mkboot, rmboot - install, update or remove boot programs from disk
/usr/sbin/mkboot [-b boot_file_path] [-c [-u] | -f | -h | -u]
[-i included_lif_file] [-p preserved_lif_file] [-l | -H | -W] [-v]
/usr/sbin/mkboot [-a auto_file_string] [-v] device
mkboot is used to install or update boot programs on the specified
The position on device at which boot programs are installed depends on
the disk layout of the device. mkboot examines device to discover the
current layout and uses this as the default. If the disk is
uninitialized, the default is LVM layout. The default can be
overridden by the -l, -H, or -W options.
Boot programs are stored in the boot area in Logical Interchange
Format (LIF), which is similar to a file system. For a device to be
bootable, the LIF volume on that device must contain at least the ISL
(the initial system loader) and HPUX (the HP-UX bootstrap utility) LIF
files. If, in addition, the device is an LVM physical volume, the
LABEL file must be present (see lvlnboot(1M) ).
mkboot recognizes the following options:
-a auto_file_string If the -a option is specified, mkboot
creates an autoexecute file AUTO on
device, if none exists. mkboot deposits
auto_file_string in that file. If this
string contains spaces, it must be quoted
so that it is a single parameter.
-b boot_file_path If this option is given, boot programs in
the pathname specified by boot_file_path
are installed on the given device.
-c If this option is specified, mkboot
checks if the available space on device
is sufficient for the boot programs. If
the -i option is also specified, mkboot
checks if each included_lif_file is
present in the boot programs. If the -p
option is specified, it checks if each
preserved_lif_file is present on the
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device. If all these checks succeed,
mkboot exits with a status code of 0. If
any of these checks fail, mkboot exits
with a status code of 1. If the verbose
option is also selected, a message is
also displayed on the standard output.
-f This option forces the information
contained in the boot programs to be
placed on the specified device without
regard to the current swapping status.
Its intended use is to allow the boot
area to grow without having to boot the
system twice (see -h option).
This option should only be used when the
system is in the single user state.
This could be a dangerous operation
because swap space that is already
allocated and possibly in use will be
overwritten by the new boot program
information. A message is also displayed
to the standard output stating that the
operator should immediately reboot the
system to avoid system corruption and to
reflect new information on the running
A safer method for reapportioning space
is to use the -h option.
This option is valid only if device has
the Whole Disk layout.
-h Specifying this option shrinks the
available space allocated to swap in the
LIF header by the amount required to
allow the installation of the new boot
programs specified by boot_file_path.
After the LIF header has been modified,
reboot the system to reflect the new swap
space on the running system. At this
point, the new boot programs can be
installed and the system rebooted again
to reflect the new boot programs on the
running system. This is the safe method
for accomplishing the capability of the
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This option is valid only if device has
the Whole Disk layout.
-H If this option is specified, mkboot
treats device to be a Hard Partition
layout disk. This option cannot be used
along with the -l and -W options.
-i included_lif_file If the -i option is specified one or more
times, mkboot copies each
included_lif_file and ignores any other
LIF files in the boot programs. The sole
exceptions to this rule are the files ISL
and HPUX, which are copied without regard
to the -i options. If included_lif_file
is also specified with the -p option, the
-i option is ignored. If the -i option is
used with LABEL as its argument and the
file LABEL does not exist in the boot
programs, and device is an LVM layout
disk or the -l option is used, mkboot
creates a minimal LABEL file on device
which will permit the system to boot on
device, possibly without swap or dump.
-l If this option is used, mkboot treats
device as a volume layout disk,
regardless of whether or not it is
currently set up as one. This option
cannot be used along with the -H and -W
options. Use the -l option for any
volume manager, including the VERITAS
Volume Manager (VxVM) as well as LVM.
-p preserved_lif_file If the -p option is specified one or more
times, mkboot keeps each specified
preserved_lif_file intact on device. If
preserved_lif_file also appears as an
argument to the -i option, that -i option
is ignored. This option is typically used
with the autoexecute file, AUTO, and with
the LVM file, LABEL.
If LABEL is specified as an argument to
the -p option and LABEL does not exist on
the device, and if the layout is LVM,
mkboot creates a minimal LABEL file. In
general, if preserved_lif_file is not on
the device, mkboot fails. An exception to
this condition is if the
preserved_lif_file is LABEL and the
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layout is not LVM, in which case the
LABEL file is ignored.
-u If -u is specified, mkboot uses the
information contained in the LIF header
to identify the location of the swap
area, boot area, and raw I/O so that
installation of the boot programs does
not violate any user data.
Normally, the LIF header information is
overwritten on each invocation of mkboot.
This option is typically used with the -W
option, to modify boot programs on a disk
that is actively supporting swap and/or
-v If this option is specified, mkboot
displays its actions, including the
amount of swap space available on the
-W If this option is specified, mkboot
treats device as a disk having the Whole
Disk layout. This option cannot be used
along with the -l and -H options. This
option will also fail on a disk having
large-file enabled HFS filesystem.
device Install the boot programs on the given
device special file. The specified device
can identify either a character-special
or block-special device. However, mkboot
requires that both the block and
character device special files be
present. mkboot attempts to determine
whether device is character or block
special by examining the specified path
name. For this reason, the complete path
name must be supplied. If mkboot is
unable to determine the corresponding
device file, a message is written to the
display, and mkboot exits.
rmboot removes the boot programs from the boot area.
Install default boot programs on the specified disk, treating it as an
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mkboot -l /dev/dsk/c0t5d0
Use the existing layout, and install only SYSLIB and ODE files and
preserve the EST file on the disk:
mkboot -i SYSLIB -i ODE -p EST /dev/rdsk/c0t5d0
Install only the SYSLIB file and retain the ODE file on the disk. Use
the Whole Disk layout. Use the file /tmp/bootlf to get the boot
programs rather than the default. (The -i ODE option will be ignored):
mkboot -b /tmp/bootlf -i SYSLIB -i ODE -p ODE -W /dev/rdsk/c0t5d0
If device has a Whole Disk layout, a file system must reside on the
device being modified.
When executing from a recovery system, the mkboot command (if used)
must be invoked with the -f option; otherwise it will not be able to
replace the boot area on your disk.
If device is, or is intended to become an LVM physical volume, device
must specify the whole disk.
If device is, or is intended to become a Hard Partitioned disk, device
must specify section 6.
mkboot and rmboot fail if file system type on device is not HFS.
LVM and Hard Partition Layouts
The -f, -h, and -u options are not supported.
mkboot and rmboot were developed by HP.
/usr/lib/uxbootlf file containing default boot programs
ISL initial system loader
HPUX HP-UX bootstrap and installation utility
AUTO defines default/automatic boot behavior
LABEL used by LVM
RDB diagnostics tool
IOMAP diagnostics tool
boot(1M), hpux(1M), isl(1M), lif(4), lvlnboot(1M), mkfs(1M),
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