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Mandrake 9.2 and LG-Based CD-ROM Drives: A Marriage Made in Hell
Mandrake team posts 'error scenarios' on its site, regrets that many Dells have CD-ROM drives from LG Electronics

[Here are the main points of the note - reproduced  verbatim]

 

Mandrake Linux 9.2 - Errata
[Note to 9.1 users: Mandrake 9.1 Errata is still available here.]

Some users have encountered problems installing or using the 9.2 release due to specific configuration situations that we did not have an opportunity to fully test. Please use the patches or recommendations included below for each scenario if it applies to you.

Note on using Patches: To use any of the patch.pl patches that are noted below, you must copy the appropriate patch onto a floppy disk, with the name patch.pl. Then you can boot off of your CD-ROM with the "patch" command at the boot prompt (obtained by pressing F1 at the splash screen), and making sure that the floppy containing the patch is in the floppy disk drive. If you boot off of floppy instead of the CD-ROM, copy the patch.pl onto your boot floppy and boot off of the floppy with the "patch" command at the boot prompt.

On this page you will find:

Mandrake Linux 9.2 Installation Notes

Mandrake Linux 9.2 Usage Notes


Mandrake Linux 9.2 Installation Notes

Potential hardware damage doing install with LG-based CD-ROM drives

When doing a network install, the network card does not seem to respond

Unable to install security updates during install

 

Error scenario: Installing 9.2 and being told unable to install the base system and subsequent reboot reveals that CD-ROM drive is physically dead.

Why: According to LG Electronics, their ODD (Optical Disc Drive) products do not support Linux nor do they test with Linux. Unfortunately, many Dell computers (possibly others) come with these CD-ROM drives.

Solution: Currently there is no solution or work-around for this issue; it is still under investigation. Damage occurs even when doing a network install. At this point, please do not install Mandrake Linux 9.2 on any computer containing a LG-based CD-ROM drive or it will damage your CD-ROM drive! We are actively looking for a solution to this problem.

 

Error scenario: When doing a network install, on some recent machines, the network card seems to not respond (ie. no DHCP response received).

Why: Certain motherboards still have problems with enabling APIC.

Solution: When booting the installer, press F1 at the splashscreen and type "linux noapic" to disable APIC support.

 

Error scenario: When trying to install security updates during installation, after having used multiple CD-ROMs, the security updates are impossible to add.

Why: A bug prevents importing the pubkey file containing the GPG signature of the security updates packages.

Solution: Format a floppy disk with a DOS filesystem (in Linux, you can use the command "mkdosfs /dev/fd0"). Copy patch.pl to the floppy disk. Remove the floppy and reboot using the Mandrake Linux 9.2 CD1 to do a CD-ROM installation. During boot, press F1 at the splash screen, then place your floppy disk that contains patch.pl in the floppy drive. At the prompt, type "patch", then follow the installation as usual.

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Reader Feedback: Page 1 of 2

FYI - found out the hard way that Ark Linux 10 alpha also wipes LG 8322b CDROM firmware. Just killed 4 drives doing this before I figured this out - who'da thunk??!! (a bunch of older IBM 300GL P2-400's being refurbed with Linux for a charity)

Once the LG CDROM drive has been flushed by Ark Linux, its permanently dead. You cannot flash new bios to it - it does not power up or anything. Another whammy: these are IBM OEM units of the 8322b drive - the latest firmware (v 1.12) warns that it is not intended for OEM drives.

Well, at least I've learned.

Peace,
AD from Canada (June 2004)

Osmorphyus, I suggest you read what the problem being discussed here is. Then maybe you could contribute something meaningful.

i have used that redhat crap and i never saw what was so overwhelmingly grad about it. the look and feel was as if a twelth grader did it up. i have been using win xp vlk for over two years and *myself* i havent had any issues with it. i still believe that the majority of users who have issues with windows (after me/98 that is) comes from themselves not having any idea of what they are doing with their computers. "whered i download that too?" "i just downloaded something and everything went to hell". the facts remain, with pc's, OS regardless, it's usually the owner/operators own unintelligence/misuse that winds them up in hot water. ive never *ever* had anything flash a bios to any component without my knowledge. you would first have to have said bios file vailable ande on your machine to start!

With the exception of NVidia drivers, Most Printers, Even (with Mandrake at least) most WinModems and WinPrinters. And lets face it, only If you know what you are doing, you will have NO problems with Linux. Even if you know what you are doing with Windows, it still makes your life a misery. And yes, Windows is capable of killing hardware too

First experience with Linux OS period. Tryed installing Madrake 9.2 on my IBM aptive 2153 E3U, I do had the LG CD-ROM drive MOdel CRD-8322B, piece of garbage crashed on me immidiately.
I had to pry cd from drive. What a piece of garbage, I didn't know you could fry equipment like that with software, well, now I must find CD-ROM replacement that works with IBMs proprietory BIOS system.

Hi davcefai,

I have al LG CD-Rom drive that is fried. The model # is CRD-8322B and it is in the "CD-Rom affected list".

I just went out and bought a used CD-Rom drive (Not an LG), it's a Panasonic. I paid $25.00 for it. I'm NOT planning to install Mandrake 9.2 Linux anymore.

It's gonna be Red Hat Linux 9.0 which what I was running for sometime.

I think there's something not quite right here. The original problem was that LG BURNERS got toasted. In your case the CD-ROM bought it. Have I understood your post correctly, you have a CD-ROM, not a CD-Writer?

I don't really know who to blame after reading so many different stories and opinions.

I had Red Hat Linux 9 running omn my Test PC for a month. NO problems what soever.

The past weekend, I decided to download Mandrake 9.2. It took me more than 3 days to doenload 3 cds. Damn sites were very busy.

I started the install over my working copy of Red Hat Linux. Deleted the partions (only test machine), created new ones. Got some funny message and all of a sudden my CD-Rom drive just froze. I had to poke a needle to get the cd out of the drive. Tried to boot many times, but no luck. Mandrake 9.2 couldn't install. CD-Rom drive, fried or toasted.

I have a HP Pavillion 4550Z
192 mb Ram
10gb hdd

and ofcourse, LG CRD-8322B cd-rom drive.

I've done all the searches over the net and tried all the procedures as posted. NO luck.

Compaq Deskpro EP and Mandrake 9.2 - two CD drives fired during experiments prior to reading linuxworld.
Compaq model CRD-832B(CP1) GD FactoryID: GR, made in Korea (Compaq part no. 179137-706).
The label on a drive does not mention LG.

No only mandrake... Gentoo fried my LG 8480C too!!!

OMFG!!!
I just finished using my LG gsa4040b to install mandrake 9.2.
my drives firmware was updated in last couple of weeks luckily, and so far it still works ok..
Talk about re-assuring articles!

...TICK.....TICK.....TICK.....TICK..... .

An attempt to a rational approach.
Usually, the writing to the flash on ANY device, requires:

1) Some kind of password, or complex sequence.
As a matter of fact evry flash memory on the market does require this.
2) Some feedback to the initiator.
3) Optinally a way to "lock" the device again, so it cannot be written by accident.
4) Note that several flash memory devices have a write protected segment (Including Korean Samsung devices) to never allow overwriting of the basic firmware.

I suspect that the LG drives do not have this safety build in them.
Well instead of beaching and screaming, I would say:
Allow to write the latest (safer) firmware by providing on the internet:
a) Software to write the CD drive firmware.
b) The "Right" firmware code.
This is vey common, and should fix the problem.

If this is not possible, just replace the CD drives under warranty, but this is obvious to me: allowing overwritting the basic flash code without protection is just a basic design flaw. This should be prettty cheap anyway.

LG should be grateful to Linux to have detected this problem at early stage: a lot easier to deal with.

LU2K

http://www.mandrakelinux.com/en/lgerrata.php3

and LG _is_ acknowledging the problem.

I find it alarming that LG should make a cdrom thats not 100% ATAPI? After all thats what we all pay for!

I am glad that Mandrake are flushing buffers - it can only be a responsible and thorough thing to do.

I will never buy LG!

I wonder if, in fact, LG drives _have_ been trashed by windows. Maybe windows only uses flush_cache occasionnally and then when the drive dies there is no "smoking gun" like, in this case, an OS installation.


Feedback Pages:


Your Feedback
AD wrote: FYI - found out the hard way that Ark Linux 10 alpha also wipes LG 8322b CDROM firmware. Just killed 4 drives doing this before I figured this out - who'da thunk??!! (a bunch of older IBM 300GL P2-400's being refurbed with Linux for a charity) Once the LG CDROM drive has been flushed by Ark Linux, its permanently dead. You cannot flash new bios to it - it does not power up or anything. Another whammy: these are IBM OEM units of the 8322b drive - the latest firmware (v 1.12) warns that it is not intended for OEM drives. Well, at least I've learned. Peace, AD from Canada (June 2004)
davcefai wrote: Osmorphyus, I suggest you read what the problem being discussed here is. Then maybe you could contribute something meaningful.
osmorphyus wrote: i have used that redhat crap and i never saw what was so overwhelmingly grad about it. the look and feel was as if a twelth grader did it up. i have been using win xp vlk for over two years and *myself* i havent had any issues with it. i still believe that the majority of users who have issues with windows (after me/98 that is) comes from themselves not having any idea of what they are doing with their computers. "whered i download that too?" "i just downloaded something and everything went to hell". the facts remain, with pc's, OS regardless, it's usually the owner/operators own unintelligence/misuse that winds them up in hot water. ive never *ever* had anything flash a bios to any component without my knowledge. you would first have to have said bios file vailable ande on your machine to start!
DS2K3 wrote: With the exception of NVidia drivers, Most Printers, Even (with Mandrake at least) most WinModems and WinPrinters. And lets face it, only If you know what you are doing, you will have NO problems with Linux. Even if you know what you are doing with Windows, it still makes your life a misery. And yes, Windows is capable of killing hardware too
Pete Iodence wrote: First experience with Linux OS period. Tryed installing Madrake 9.2 on my IBM aptive 2153 E3U, I do had the LG CD-ROM drive MOdel CRD-8322B, piece of garbage crashed on me immidiately. I had to pry cd from drive. What a piece of garbage, I didn't know you could fry equipment like that with software, well, now I must find CD-ROM replacement that works with IBMs proprietory BIOS system.
subhas chand wrote: Hi davcefai, I have al LG CD-Rom drive that is fried. The model # is CRD-8322B and it is in the "CD-Rom affected list". I just went out and bought a used CD-Rom drive (Not an LG), it's a Panasonic. I paid $25.00 for it. I'm NOT planning to install Mandrake 9.2 Linux anymore. It's gonna be Red Hat Linux 9.0 which what I was running for sometime.
davcefai wrote: I think there's something not quite right here. The original problem was that LG BURNERS got toasted. In your case the CD-ROM bought it. Have I understood your post correctly, you have a CD-ROM, not a CD-Writer?
subhas chand wrote: I don't really know who to blame after reading so many different stories and opinions. I had Red Hat Linux 9 running omn my Test PC for a month. NO problems what soever. The past weekend, I decided to download Mandrake 9.2. It took me more than 3 days to doenload 3 cds. Damn sites were very busy. I started the install over my working copy of Red Hat Linux. Deleted the partions (only test machine), created new ones. Got some funny message and all of a sudden my CD-Rom drive just froze. I had to poke a needle to get the cd out of the drive. Tried to boot many times, but no luck. Mandrake 9.2 couldn't install. CD-Rom drive, fried or toasted. I have a HP Pavillion 4550Z 192 mb Ram 10gb hdd and ofcourse, LG CRD-8322B cd-rom drive. I've done all the searches over the net and tried all the procedures as posted. NO luck.
Tom wrote: Compaq Deskpro EP and Mandrake 9.2 - two CD drives fired during experiments prior to reading linuxworld. Compaq model CRD-832B(CP1) GD FactoryID: GR, made in Korea (Compaq part no. 179137-706). The label on a drive does not mention LG.
TK wrote: No only mandrake... Gentoo fried my LG 8480C too!!!
timebomb? wrote: OMFG!!! I just finished using my LG gsa4040b to install mandrake 9.2. my drives firmware was updated in last couple of weeks luckily, and so far it still works ok.. Talk about re-assuring articles! ...TICK.....TICK.....TICK.....TICK..... .
Linux User wrote: An attempt to a rational approach. Usually, the writing to the flash on ANY device, requires: 1) Some kind of password, or complex sequence. As a matter of fact evry flash memory on the market does require this. 2) Some feedback to the initiator. 3) Optinally a way to "lock" the device again, so it cannot be written by accident. 4) Note that several flash memory devices have a write protected segment (Including Korean Samsung devices) to never allow overwriting of the basic firmware. I suspect that the LG drives do not have this safety build in them. Well instead of beaching and screaming, I would say: Allow to write the latest (safer) firmware by providing on the internet: a) Software to write the CD drive firmware. b) The "Right" firmware code. This is vey common, and should fix the problem. If this is not possible, just replace the CD drives under warranty,...
roeland jansen wrote: http://www.mandrakelinux.com/en/lgerrata.php3 and LG _is_ acknowledging the problem.
Vyse-Pirate Isle wrote: I find it alarming that LG should make a cdrom thats not 100% ATAPI? After all thats what we all pay for! I am glad that Mandrake are flushing buffers - it can only be a responsible and thorough thing to do. I will never buy LG!
davcefai wrote: I wonder if, in fact, LG drives _have_ been trashed by windows. Maybe windows only uses flush_cache occasionnally and then when the drive dies there is no "smoking gun" like, in this case, an OS installation.
Paul Sephton wrote: Bunch of really funny fellows you... The LG drives in question interpret the "FLUSH_CACHE" ATAPI command to mean "Upload Firmware". Sorry guys, the LG drives are just not ATAPI compliant. Whoopee it works with winners tho. Clearly Windows never tries to flush the cache buffer. LG have a newer firmware that fixes the problem. Upgrade firmware before installing Mandrake.
john wrote: linux is not better than WİNDOWS.it does not include everythıng it is unstable for anythıng
Chojin wrote: settantta: you don't know what you're talking about...why? Simply because ATAPI units are mapped as SCSI under Windows OSes, especially under NT based ones....
settantta wrote: Not necessarily. Windows doesn't use SCSI emulation, Linux sometimes does. If a drive is fully ATAPI compliant, there will be no problem (ATAPI contains a subset of the SCSI commands). Windows obviously never uses the command which causes the problem (which also means it doesn't use the full capabilities of the drive). So, LG should ensure their drives are fully ATAPI compliant, or they should put a prominent notice to that effect on the packaging. Their mistake, their fault.
Chojin wrote: Davcefai: If that was true then people using Windows OSes should see their drives failing as well....
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