f.holop - Wed, 29 April 2020 at 14:57:46
> i'll try to make a similar test with some linux live distro to see
> if i get similar results.

I have tested MX linux install ISO that also doubles as a Live distro.

In the end it's apples and oranges because I use the openbsd USB key to
boot the system from the internal drive ("boot hd1a:bsd"),
while the Live Linux boots from the USB key and runs from RAM (so more
like a beefed up "boot hd0a:bsd.rd")...

Nevertheless linux detects the nvme drive in all cases (entering
BIOS/not entering BIOS).


This inspired me to let the openbsd USB key boot up all the way when the
internal drive was not detected in the first stage boot.  The internal
drive was right there in `dmesg`, `sysctl hw`, `disklabel`, etc.  I
could mount it while running off of the USB key.

I think this makes the case less clear cut... Who knows what the BIOS
is doing with/without entering, but the kernel has no difficulties
seeing the drive in either case, just like linux.


Astute readers will notice that there is discrepancy in my story:

I said I can't change the boot order without entering the BIOS, but
entering the BIOS makes the internal disk show up. How could I have
this then:

probing: pc0 mem[636k 1928M 14304M]
disk: hd0


"Elemental."  With all these reboots I have worked out how this sorry
excuse for a BIOS's boot order mechanism works, and it's horrible:

It is not possible to select a generic slot like "USB media" or such.
Only when the device is bootable and is recognized by the BIOS, only
then does it show up in the dropdown and can be put in the first boot
slot.  Even then, it is remembered between reboots only until it's not
removed from the port.

It is between these types of reboots (not entering the BIOS, but the USB
key is still "remembered") that the system is booting from USB (without
entering the BIOS), however the internal drive does not show up in first
stage boot.

I wonder how many of the newer ASUS notebooks behave like this and if
this is the future, or just some frankenstein experiment...

When clearing the secure boot keys disappears from the BIOS menus,
I guess it's game over.

-f
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