Booting with TFTP
On machines with OpenBoot, simply enter the boot monitor on the
machine which is being installed (see
Use the command boot net to boot from a TFTP
and RARP server, or try boot net:bootp or
boot net:dhcp to boot from a TFTP and BOOTP
or DHCP server. Some older OpenBoot revisions require using
the device name, such as boot le(); these
probably don't support BOOTP nor DHCP.
Booting from a CD-ROM
Most OpenBoot versions support the boot cdrom
command which is simply an alias to boot from the SCSI device on ID 6
(or the secondary master for IDE based systems). You may have to use
the actual device name for older OpenBoot versions that don't support
this special command. Note that some problems have been reported on Sun4m
(e.g., Sparc 10s and Sparc 20s) systems booting from CD-ROM.
Booting from Floppies
To boot from floppy on a Sparc, use
Stop-A -> OpenBoot: "boot floppy"
Be warned that the newer Sun4u (ultra) architecture does not support
floppy booting. A typical error message is Bad magic
number in disk label - Can't open disk label package.
Furthermore, a number of Sun4c models (such as the IPX) do not support
the compressed images found on the disks, so also are not supported.
Several Sparcs (e.g. Ultra 10) have an OBP bug that prevents them from
booting (instead of not supporting booting at all). The appropriate
OBP update can be downloaded as product ID 106121 from
If you are booting from the floppy, and you see messages such as
Fatal error: Cannot read partition
Illegal or malformed device name
then it is possible that floppy booting is simply not supported on
If you cannot boot because you get messages about a problem with
``IDPROM'', then it's possible that your NVRAM battery, which holds
configuration information for you firmware, has run out. See the
Sun NVRAM FAQ for more