Thomas Marteau


Deb Richardson

The Puffin Group

Thibaut Varčne

version 1.5 for DocBook V4.2 Edition


Revision History
Revision 1.52006-06-06Revised by: tv
XML cleanup, improved and reorganized contents. Updated to palo 1.5+ and kernel 2.6.
Revision 1.12003-11-01Revised by: tm
Added Jeremy Drake's Windows™ server boot howto.
Revision 1.02002-10-04Revised by: tm & tv
Content done by Thibaut. Ready for Woody release. Added Glossary and bibliography. XML conversion.
Revision 0.92002-01-15Revised by: tm
This version brings you some useful advices for compiling your own kernel on hppa systems.
Revision 0.82001-10-17Revised by: tm
This version takes care of the change of name of the official FTP and CVS sites and modify the license.
Revision 0.72001-10-13Revised by: tm
This version adds some updates due to the progress of PA/Linux.
Revision 0.6 draft2001-09-26Revised by: tm
This version contains some minor changes and complete the "obtaining bootp/tftpd" section.
Revision 0.5 draft2001-07-03Revised by: tm
This version is a large update from Deb's work.
Revision 0.3 draft1999-11-24Revised by: dlr
The initial and published version of this HOWTO.

This document outlines the procedures to get the PA-RISC/Linux kernel to boot on your PA-RISC system. It also explains the usage of PALO, the kernel loader for PA/Linux. You will find much information on how to compile a kernel from the source available at Please note that this HOWTO version is newer than Deb Richardson's and includes more accurate information because of the progress of the port. Nevertheless, it's worth mentioning that this document kept parts of Deb's original work and unveiled some remarkable information.

If you are looking for information related to HP hardware but not directly to PA-RISC, please read Bruno Cornec's HP-HOWTO.

Note: by the time this HOWTO was started, Debian was the only Linux distribution available for the PA-RISC platform, hence the "Debian color" of this document. Some times, Debian specific commands will have to be replaced by their equivalent, if any.

Table of Contents
1. Supported Hardware
2. Preparing to boot
2.2. Consoles
3. PALO, the PA/Linux kernel loader
3.1. What is PALO?
3.2. What does PALO?
3.3. PALO management tool usage
3.4. How to use PALO at early boot stage?
4. Available boot solutions
4.1. Booting from CD
4.2. Booting from hard drive
4.3. Booting from network
5. Building and installing a custom kernel
5.1. GCC compiler
5.2. Kernel configuration
5.3. Kernel installation
A. Windows™ 2003 boot server howto
A.1. Setup the DHCP service
A.2. Get & setup the TFTP server
A.3. Attempt to netboot
B. Older PALO dumps
B.1. A500 Session dump using PALO 0.97
C. HOWTO contributors