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Linux boots on Sun's Niagara chip

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Linux

Dave Miller, the lead programmer for Linux on Sun Microsystems' Sparc processors, said on his blog Friday he has fired up the open-source operating system on Sun's new UltraSparc T1 "Niagara"-based server. The move is an early milestone in Sun's effort, not just to make Linux functioning on its Sparc-based computers, but also to foster a useful software environment for Linux on Sparc.

In his blog, Miller published a log showing Linux recognized the system as a 32-processor machine with the words, "total of 32 processors activated." The appearance of 32 separate processors for a single chip derives from the fact that the UltraSparc T1 has eight processing engines called cores, each able to handle four separate instruction sequences called threads.

The boot didn't go entirely swimmingly, however: Later in the process, the file system caused a serious problem called a kernel panic.

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