What's the trick for Dell firmware updates on RHEL-like OSes?

Matt Domsch Matt_Domsch at dell.com
Wed Feb 2 20:04:08 CST 2011

On Wed, Feb 02, 2011 at 10:27:01AM -0700, Stephen Dowdy wrote:
> Bond,
> If you're interested, i completely avoid using the Dell .BIN files
> directly, as they do not work at all on Debian based distros and
> often failed on the intended Redhat platforms (they're better now,
> but used to always say things like "Can't allocate 1MB of contiguous
> RAM" on my 8th gen systems (WHAT?!).

Correct - the older systems required that the entire BIOS payload
image be stored in physically contiguous RAM, to be easily discovered
after reboot during POST where the actual flash occurs.  We recognized
that as a shortcoming - you can't get 1MB physically contiguous RAM
several minutes or later after a boot into Linux, the memory is too
fragmented by that point - and devised the method used on 9G and newer
(we call it "packet mode" vs the original "monolithic mode") where the
image is split into the necessary number of pages, and re-assembled
during POST.

Matt Domsch
Technology Strategist
Dell | Office of the CTO

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