SPARC NetBSD on Qemu 0.14.0

I came across this link, in some kind of vain search to see if NetBSD Sparc could run on Qemu.  And the answer is a resounding yes!

I have to admit it was pretty simple to setup too. I did a network install, so all I needed in a minimal config was a GENERIC kernel, and the miniroot. I did it this way because booting with the inserted kernel lets me easily choose my root…

First I created a 2GB data disk, then start up Qemu like this…

qemu-system-sparc.exe -kernel netbsd-GENERIC -L pc-bios -hda sparc.disk -hdb miniroot.fs -net nic -net user

And it’ll boot up!

I specify the root to be sd1c, I’m not sure if it’d pick up on sd1, or sd1a but at any rate sd1c certainly works. The other gotcha I found was the keyboard, sun-type4 worked best. I also had to configure the network manually (maybe I missed something?) but the settings are simple for NAT.

mask 0xffffff00

Any attempt to ping the gateway will fail. But it’s nothing to worry about, and the install can continue normally. I pulled the rest of NetBSD down via HTTP, and it booted up!

I should also add that the CD-ROM iso install works as well. And the NetBSD site has lots of ways of getting the install ISO for the sparc.

And of course, will it run Zork?

Yes it does!

4 thoughts on “SPARC NetBSD on Qemu 0.14.0

  1. Thank’s for the tip. I’m desperately trying to get a big endian BSD up and running to finally throw growfs on my enlarged harddisk. Your post asserted me, it must be working somehow.
    And it eventually did, after using a probably newer openbios version for qemu…

    • Cool! Qemu 0.14 is kind of ancient … Although I haven’t tried any of the newer builds of Qemu with the SPARC stuff.. OpenBIOS has made large strides going forward…

      Oddly enough today though, I was loading up Solaris 2.4 on Qemu to see what I could get working, although it seems to be a lot of nothing… 🙁

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