[sclug] Network startup on Debian

David Given dg at cowlark.com
Mon Oct 23 19:10:28 UTC 2006

Here's a good old fashioned Linux question!

I've got this Debian box. (My Amstrad E3, if anyone cares.) It's hardware
clock is borked, so every time it boots it resets to 1970.

Fine, I think. This is what ntpdate and openntpd is for. A quick (well, very
slow) aptitude run later, and ntpdate is working fine.

Reboot. Oh, dear.

There are two things going on: firstly, the boot sequence only runs ntpdate
*after* the filesystem is mounted, which means that it continually things it's
been several thousand days since the filesystem was last fscked, and so it
sits there for half an hour grinding through it; and secondly, this thing is
connected to the 'net via a zd1201 USB wireless thingy, which wants firmware.
Linux's idiotic firmware loader runs in user space. The USB driver tries to
find the firmware when the kernel boots, before the firmware loader has
loaded. So after booting I have to unplug and reinsert the thingy in order to
make the network come up.

Any suggestions?

+- David Given --McQ-+ "Gaping from its single obling socket was
|  dg at cowlark.com    | scintillating, many fauceted scarlet emerald..."
| (dg at tao-group.com) | --- Jim Theis, _The Eye of Argon_ (spelling
+- www.cowlark.com --+ original)

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