LPI Linux Certification/Setup Different PC Expansion Cards

Setup Different PC Expansion Cards edit

Detailed Objective edit

Weight: 3

Candidates should be able to configure various cards for the various expansion slots.
  • Key knowledge area(s):
    • Know the differences between coldplug and hotplug devices.
    • Determine hardware recourses for devices.
  • The following is a partial list of the used files, terms and utilities:
    • The appropriate subdirectories of /proc
    • hotplug configuration files, terms and utilities
    • lspci
    • lsusb

Hotplug edit

With proper support from the operating system, some devices can be added and/or removed without shutting the system down, much like a CD-ROM or floppy disk can be mounted or unmounted. USB was designed to be hot-pluggable, but the operating system must still be prepared to deal with the possibility of devices appearing and disappearing.

Some server motherboards support a hot-pluggable PCI slot standard, intended to reduce downtime by allowing administrators to replace failed components without shutting-down the entire server. A few server vendors even go as far as to allow swapping-out bad RAM while the system is running, but this is very rare and expensive. Both the hardware and the operating system must support hot-plugging components in order for the system to work. (There's a limited amount of repair that can be done on an airplane while flying at 10,000 feet.)

Coldplug edit

It is much less confusing to your computer if you shutdown the power before making any changes to hardware you are connecting.

PCI edit

All PCI cards are normally detected by the BIOS. At boot time the BIOS probes the PCI configuration space and detects all the different devices and bridges. To insure that the BIOS has detected all the PCI devices, use lspci. Check for bridges, special devices, and functions.

All ISA cards are also normally detected with the respected drivers. The utilities that allow you to manually configure any ISA cards are pnpdump, pnpisa and /etc/pnpisa.conf file. The pnpdump program allows you to dump information on all the detected ISA cards. The isapnp works with a configuration file /etc/pnpisa.conf that has the same syntax of the output of pnpdump and it allows you to customize any ISA card settings.

Exercises edit