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What do I want:

  • A running xen on a headless raspberry 4 preferably running from the external hdd (but i'm already glad if it runs from an SDcard.)

So what do I have:

  • a raspberry pi 4 with 4 gigs
  • a thinkpad with intel i5 and 8 gigs of ram in it. OS is archlinux
  • an SD card (32Gigs)
  • an external HDD drive (I've tried to make this work with SD, because I was affraid that it might complicate things more, but ultimately I'd like to run my raspi from this hdd. I'm not sure what difference it makes, but I remember that it did when I first played around with my raspberry)

and what I don't have:

  • UART
  • micro hdmi and compatible monitor
  • and i lost my clear mind...

It would be too much of a task to list all the things I tried, but my last attempt was to get this script working.

[EDIT4 I opened an issue on the github repo, and I managed to make the script working. See the github issue link, if you ran into the same problem. Although I managed to get over this bump, my question is still relevant, since I still don't know how to go forward from here. See continuation of the "EDIT4" at the bottom of the post]


So will this script turn my dreams true? If so, what do I need to make it work, and what are the extra steps I need to make to adjust it for a headless configuration? Or you can provide me the instructions I should follow to make it work ( I'd prefer this way, so I'll actually know what I'm doing. Generally I don't like letting a script do magic for me so I can learn, but this time I got to a point when I don't really care I just want to make this finally work. )


Not strictly relevant

I know I should list the other things that I've tried here, but I'm trying to get this work for days, and I'm asking this question here because I'd like to get instructions about in what order should I do things. I've tried to use parts of various articles to learn what should I do, but the result was that I just got more confused. Probably I wasn't so unsure about things If I know what differentiates raspberry from a "normal" desktop computer other than it has a different chip. I guess I should also know more about bootloaders in general too. Trial and error gets pretty nerv wrecking with headless configurations, but on the other hand I got aware of the things I took for granted before. I'll list the articles I thought might be helpful for the problem.

Sources I was trying to use, but got confused by them instead:


[EDIT4: I managed to create the image. I didn't get much further though, I put the sd card, and after booting (I'm headless, so by booting I mean "intensive led flash parade") it get's to a state where the red led is off, the green have really short - I'd say "nano" to empathize how short - flashes. It would be great to know at least what stage I've got now.]

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  • 1
    "the script exited with an error" - this is what you should describe in details, not various pages you have consulted. Jan 29 at 10:11
  • I'll try to do it again, but as I wrote, I did it on my friends laptop. Also as I have mentioned I was not sure if I need ubuntu be on my computer. I'm trying to get an ubuntu vm to run on my machine RN, but I still posted this question because I was not even sure if I need this script, and It feels like I'm doing the same rounds I was doing for the last couple of days. It's really getting annoying this trial and error what I'm doing for a while now, and I hoped finally I can get an answer what method should I choose among the several ones
    – zoldseges
    Jan 29 at 15:00
  • Even if you can get xen to run I don't believe that you will be happy with the limited performance of a RasPi and without virtual hardware support by the processor. I will not say that it's unposible, bit it's totally unusable. Instead of running virtual machines on one RasPi just purchase additional RasPis. They are cheap enough. Clustering is a better interesting project.
    – Ingo
    Jan 29 at 18:32
  • it's mostly for educational purposes, so if it's running, I'm happy. I already had some virutal machines on it, it was not too bad. for example I created a virtual machine for my brother so he could also use it as a server.
    – zoldseges
    Feb 1 at 10:29
  • @DmitryGrigoryev I managed to get over this part. What now?
    – zoldseges
    Feb 10 at 12:02
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I'm going through the same process right now and havn't compeleted it yet. For the xen-rpi-builder I think they missed the latest XEN and Kernel and I think the patches may no longer be relevant so I upgraded the contained versions to the latest 4.14 and kernel 5.10.y. Not sure yet if this is good or bad but at least I could get it to build.

I think in order to "see something" you would have to connect some GPIO pins (the ones that attach to ttyS1) to a serial2USB converter in order to see the output of the XEN itself.

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  • Great! I would retain from hacking on (I don't mean that you shouldnt, I'm talking about myself) the builder yet. I'd ask though, Do you think this is what 'd need? store.logicneed.com/product/1457 if not could you tell me what? (if you link webshop, please keep in mind that I live in hungary (amazon charges badly for shipping here). For small things I use aliexpress or wish. Also if you manage to make it run, i'd greatly appreciate if you would append it to your reply! :)
    – zoldseges
    Feb 13 at 16:17

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