man(1) Manual page archive

     PLAN9.INI(8)                                         PLAN9.INI(8)

          plan9.ini - configuration file primarily for PCs


          When booting Plan 9 on a PC, the bootstrap programs
          described in 9boot(8) first read, via TFTP or a FAT filesys-
          tem on the boot disk, a file containing configuration infor-
          mation.  This file, /cfg/pxe/hex-digits (TFTP; see 9boot(8))
          or plan9.ini (FAT), looks like a shell script containing
          lines of the form


          each of which defines a kernel or device parameter.

          Blank lines and Carriage Returns (\r) are ignored.  # com-
          ments are ignored, but are only recognised if `#' appears at
          the start of a line.

          For devices, the generic format of value is

               type=TYPE [port=N] [irq=N] [mem=N] [size=N] [dma=N] [ea=N]

          specifying the controller type, the base I/O port of the
          interface, its interrupt level, the physical starting
          address of any mapped memory, the length in bytes of that
          memory, the DMA channel, and for Ethernets an override of
          the physical network address.  Not all elements are relevant
          to all devices; the relevant values and their defaults are
          defined below in the description of each device.

          The file is used by the bootstrap programs and the kernel to
          configure the hardware available, although nowadays the ker-
          nel can usually detect the attached hardware by itself.  The
          information it contains is also passed to the boot process,
          and subsequently other programs, as environment variables
          (see boot(8)). However, values whose names begin with an
          asterisk `*' are used by the kernel and are stored in `#ec'
          rather than `#e'.

          The following sections describe how variables are used.

          This defines an Ethernet interface.  X, a unique monotoni-
          cally increasing number beginning at 0, identifies an Ether-
          net card to be probed at system boot.  Probing stops when a

     PLAN9.INI(8)                                         PLAN9.INI(8)

          card is found or there is no line for etherX+1.  After prob-
          ing as directed by the etherX lines, any remaining Ethernet
          cards that can be automatically detected are added.  Almost
          all cards can be automatically detected.  For debugging pur-
          poses, automatic probing can be disabled by specifying the
          line `*noetherprobe='.

          Many cards are software configurable and do not require all
          options.  Unspecified options default to the factory

          Known TYPEs are

          igbe    The Intel 8254X Gigabit Ethernet controllers, as
                  found on the Intel PRO/1000 adapters for copper (not
                  fiber).  Completely configurable.

                  The Intel 8256[36], 8257[12], and 82573[ev] Gigabit
                  Ethernet PCI-Express controllers.  Completely con-

          rtl8169 The Realtek 8169 Gigabit Ethernet controller.  Com-
                  pletely configurable.

          ga620   Netgear GA620 and GA620T Gigabit Ethernet cards, and
                  other cards using the Alteon Acenic chip such as the
                  Alteon Acenic fiber and copper cards, the DEC
                  DEGPA-SA and the SGI Acenic.  Completely config-

          dp83820 National Semiconductor DP83820-based Gigabit Ether-
                  net adapters, notably the D-Link DGE-500T.  Com-
                  pletely configurable.

          vgbe    The VIA Velocity Gigabit Ethernet controller.  Known
                  to drive the VIA8237 (ABIT AV8), but at 100Mb/s
                  full-duplex only.

          m10g    The Myricom 10-Gigabit Ethernet 10G-PCIE-8A con-
                  troller.  Completely configurable.

          i82598  The Intel 8259[89] 10-Gigabit Ethernet PCI-Express
                  controllers.  Completely configurable.

          i82557  Cards using the Intel 8255[789] Fast Ethernet PCI
                  Bus LAN Controller such as the Intel EtherExpress
                  PRO/100B.  Completely configurable, no options need
                  be given.  If you need to force the media, specify
                  one of the options (no value) 10BASE-T, 10BASE-2,
                  10BASE-5, 100BASE-TX, 10BASE-TFD, 100BASE-TXFD,

     PLAN9.INI(8)                                         PLAN9.INI(8)

                  100BASE-T4, 100BASE-FX, or 100BASE-FXFD.  Completely

          2114x   Cards using the Digital Equipment (now Intel) 2114x
                  PCI Fast Ethernet Adapter Controller, for example
                  the Netgear FA310.  Completely configurable, no
                  options need be given.  Media can be specified the
                  same was as for the i82557.  Some cards using the
                  PNIC and PNIC2 near-clone chips may also work.

          83815   National Semiconductor DP83815-based adapters,
                  notably the Netgear FA311, Netgear FA312, and vari-
                  ous SiS built-in controllers such as the SiS900.  On
                  the SiS controllers, the Ethernet address is not
                  detected properly; specify it with an ea= attribute.
                  Completely configurable.

          rtl8139 The Realtek 8139 Fast Ethernet controller.  Com-
                  pletely configurable.

          vt6102  The VIA VT6102 Fast Ethernet Controller (Rhine II).

          vt6105m The VIA VT6105M Fast Ethernet Controller (Rhine

                  SMC 91cXX chip-based PCMCIA adapters, notably the
                  SMC EtherEZ card.

          elnk3   The 3COM Etherlink III series of cards including the
                  5x9, 59x, and 905 and 905B.  Completely config-
                  urable, no options need be given.  The media may be
                  specified by setting media= to the value 10BaseT,
                  10Base2, 100BaseTX, 100BaseFX, aui, and mii.  If you
                  need to force full duplex, because for example the
                  Ethernet switch does not negotiate correctly, just
                  name the word (no value) fullduplex or 100BASE-TXFD.
                  Similarly, to force 100Mbit operation, specify
                  force100.  Port 0x110 is used for the little ISA
                  configuration dance.

          3c589   The 3COM 3C589 series PCMCIA cards, including the
                  3C562 and the 589E.  There is no support for the
                  modem on the 3C562.  Completely configurable, no
                  options need be given.  Defaults are
                       port=0x240 irq=10
                  The media may be specified as media=10BaseT or

          ec2t    The Linksys Combo PCMCIA EthernetCard (EC2T), Ether-
                  Fast 10/100 PCMCIA cards (PCMPC100) and integrated
                  controllers (PCM100), the Netgear FA410TX 10/100

     PLAN9.INI(8)                                         PLAN9.INI(8)

                  PCMCIA card and the Accton EtherPair-PCMCIA
                  (EN2216).  Completely configurable, no options need
                  be given.  Defaults are
                       port=0x300 irq=9
                  These cards are NE2000 clones.  Other NE2000 compat-
                  ible PCMCIA cards may be tried with the option
                  where string is a unique identifier string contained
                  in the attribute memory of the card (see pcmcia(8));
                  unlike most options in plan9.ini, this string is
                  case-sensitive.  The option dummyrr=[01] can be used
                  to turn off (0) or on (1) a dummy remote read in the
                  driver in such cases, depending on how NE2000 com-
                  patible they are.

          ne2000  Not software configurable iff ISA; PCI clones or
                  supersets are software configurable; includes the
                  Realtek 8029 clone used by Parallels.  16-bit card.
                  Defaults are
                       port=0x300 irq=2 mem=0x04000 size=0x4000
                  The option (no value) nodummyrr is needed on some
                  (near) clones to turn off a dummy remote read in the

                  The AMD PCnet PCI Ethernet Adapter (AM79C970).
                  (This is the Ethernet adapter used by VMware.)  Com-
                  pletely configurable, no options need be given.

          wd8003  Includes WD8013 and SMC Elite and Elite Ultra cards.
                  There are varying degrees of software configurabil-
                  ity. Cards may be in either 8-bit or 16-bit slots.
                  Defaults are
                       port=0x280 irq=3 mem=0xD0000 size=0x2000
                  BUG: On many machines only the 16 bit card works.

          sink    A /dev/null for Ethernet packets - the interface
                  discards sent packets and never receives any.  This
                  is used to provide a test bed for some experimental
                  Ethernet bridging software.

          wavelan Lucent Wavelan (Orinoco) IEEE 802.11b and compatible
                  PCMCIA cards.  Compatible cards include the Dell
                  TrueMobile 1150 and the Linksys Instant Wireless
                  Network PC Card.  Port and IRQ defaults are 0x180
                  and 3 respectively.

                  These cards take a number of unique options to aid
                  in identifying the card correctly on the 802.11b
                  network.  The network may be ad hoc or managed (i.e.
                  use an access point):
                       mode=[adhoc, managed]

     PLAN9.INI(8)                                         PLAN9.INI(8)

                  and defaults to managed. The 802.11b network to
                  attach to (managed mode) or identify as (ad hoc
                  mode), is specified by
                  and defaults to a null string.  The card station
                  name is given by
                  and defaults to Plan 9 STA. The channel to use is
                  given by
                  where number lies in the range 1 to 16 inclusive;
                  the channel is normally negotiated automatically.

                  If the card is capable of encryption, the following
                  options may be used:
                       crypt=[off, on]
                  and defaults to on.
                  sets the encryption key N (where N is in the range 1
                  to 4 inclusive) to string; this will also set the
                  transmit key to N (see below).  There are two for-
                  mats for string which depend on the length of the
                  string.  If it is exactly 5 or 13 characters long it
                  is assumed to be an alphanumeric key; if it is
                  exactly 10 or 26 characters long the key is assumed
                  to be in hex format (without a leading 0x). The
                  lengths are checked, as is the format of a hex key.
                  sets the transmit key to use to be number in the
                  range 1 to 4 inclusive.  If it is desired to exclude
                  or include unencrypted packets
                       clear=[off, on]
                  configures reception and defaults to inclusion.

                  The defaults are intended to match the common case
                  of a managed network with encryption and a typical
                  entry would only require, for example
                       essid=left-armpit key1=afish key2=calledraawaru
                  if the port and IRQ defaults are used.  These
                  options may be set after boot by writing to the
                  device's ctl file using a space as the separator
                  between option and value, e.g.
                       echo 'key2 1d8f65c9a52d83c8e4b43f94af' >/net/ether0/0/ctl

                  Card-specific power management may be
                  enabled/disabled by
                       pm=[on, off]

                  PCI Ethernet adapters that use the same Wavelan pro-
                  gramming interface.  Currently the only tested cards
                  are those based on the Intersil Prism 2.5 chipset.

     PLAN9.INI(8)                                         PLAN9.INI(8)

        DISKS, TAPES
          (S)ATA controllers are autodetected.

          This specifies the settings for a USB UHCI, OHCI or EHCI
          controller.  Like the Ethernet controllers, USB controllers
          are autodetected after scanning for the ones listed in
          plan9.ini. Thus, most systems will not need a usbX line.
          Also like the Ethernet controllers, USB autoprobing can be
          disabled by specifying the line *nousbprobe=.

          This defines a SCSI interface which cannot be automatically
          detected by the kernel.

          Known TYPEs are

               Adaptec 154x series of controllers (and clones).
               Almost completely configurable, only the
               option need be given.

          NCR/Symbios/LSI-Logic 53c8xx-based adapters and Mylex Multi-
          Master (Buslogic BT-*) adapters are automatically detected
          and need no entries.

          By default, the NCR 53c8xx driver searches for up to 32 con-
          trollers.  This can be changed by setting the variable

          By default the Mylex driver resets SCSI cards by using both
          the hard reset and SCSI bus reset flags in the driver inter-
          face.  If a variable *noscsireset is defined, the SCSI bus
          reset flag is omitted.

          This specifies a space-separated list of Ethernet interfaces
          to be bound at boot to the ATA-over-Ethernet driver, aoe(3).
          For example, `aoeif=ether0 ether1'.  Only interfaces on this
          list will initially be accessible via AoE.

          This specifies an ATA-over-Ethernet device accessible via
          the interfaces named in aoeif on AoE shelf and slot to use
          as a root device for bootstrapping.

          This defines a pre-USB sound interface.

     PLAN9.INI(8)                                         PLAN9.INI(8)

          Known types are

          sb16     Sound Blaster 16.

          ess1688  A Sound Blaster clone.

          The DMA channel may be any of 5, 6, or 7.  The defaults are

               port=0x220 irq=7 dma=5

          Plan 9 automatically configures COM1 and COM2, if found, as
          eia0 (port 0x3F8, IRQ4) and eia1 (port 0x2F8, IRQ3) respec-
          tively.  These devices can be disabled by adding a line:


          This is typically done in order to reuse the IRQ for another

          Plan 9 used to support various serial concentrators, includ-
          ing the TTC 8 serial line card and various models in the
          Star Gate Avanstar series of intelligent serial boards.
          These are no longer supported; the much simpler Perle PCI-
          Fast4, PCI-Fast8, and PCI-Fast16 controllers have taken
          their places.  These latter cards are automatically detected
          and need no configuration lines.

          The line serial=type=com can be used to specify settings for
          a PCMCIA modem.

          This specifies where the mouse is attached.  Value can be

          ps2  the PS2 mouse/keyboard port.  The BIOS setup procedure
               should be used to configure the machine appropriately.

               an Intellimouse on the PS2 port.

          0    for COM1

          1    for COM2

          Picks the UART line to call out on.  This is used when con-
          necting to a file server over an async line.  Value is the
          number of the port.

        console=value params
          This is used to specify the console device.  The default

     PLAN9.INI(8)                                         PLAN9.INI(8)

          value is cga; a number 0 or 1 specifies COM1 or COM2 respec-
          tively.  A serial console is initially configured with the
          uart(3) configuration string b9600 l8 pn s1, specifying 9600
          baud, 8 bit bytes, no parity, and one stop bit.  If params
          is given, it will be used to further configure the uart.
          Notice that there is no = sign in the params syntax.  For

               console=0 b19200 po

          would use COM1 at 19,200 baud with odd parity.

        PC CARD
          Disable probing for and automatic configuration of PC card

        pcmciaX=type=XXX irq=irq
          If the default IRQ for the PCMCIA is correct, this entry can
          be omitted.  The value of type is ignored.

          Disable probing for and automatic configuration of PCMCIA

          This is used to specify an nvram device and optionally the
          length of the ram and read/write offset to use.  These val-
          ues are consulted by readnvram (see authsrv(2)). The most
          common use of the nvram is to hold a secstore(1) password
          for use by factotum(4).

          This is used by the WORM file server kernel to locate a file
          holding information to configure the file system.  The file
          cannot live on a SCSI disk.  The default is fd!0!plan9.nvr
          (sic), unless bootfile is set, in which case it is plan9.nvr
          on the same disk as bootfile.  The syntax is either
          fd!unit!name or hd!unit!name where unit is the numeric unit
          id.  This variant syntax is a vestige of the file server
          kernel's origins.

          This is used to direct the actions of the bootstrap programs
          by naming the device and file from which to load the kernel.


     PLAN9.INI(8)                                         PLAN9.INI(8)

          These are used by the bootstrap programs to identify the
          directory dir to make the root directory for the kernel, and
          the file system specifier spec (see mount in bind(2)) on
          which it can be found.  These are usually used to test vari-
          ant file systems for distributions, etc.

          The value of this variable is passed to boot(8) by the ker-
          nel as the name of the root file system.  It is typically
          used to specify additional arguments to pass to kfs(4) or
          ipconfig(8). For example, if the system is to run from a
          local kfs(4) partition, the definition might read
          bootargs=local!#S/sdC0/fs.  See boot(8) for more.

          Suppress the `root from' prompt and use root as the answer

          Suppress the `user' prompt and use user as the answer

          Causes boot(8) to start factotum with the -p option, so that
          it can be debugged.

          Causes boot(8) to start factotum with the given options,
          which must be a single word (i.e., contain no whitespace).

          When booting from a local fossil server backed by a local or
          remote venti server, this variable specifies how to estab-
          lish the connection to the venti server.  See boot(8) for

          This names the file holding the disk partition for the cache
          file system, cfs(4). Extending the bootargs example, one
          would write cfs=#S/sdC0/cache.

          This deprecated variable was used to specify the disk used
          by the cache file system and other disk-resident services.
          It is superseded by bootargs and cfs.

          This defines the partition table 9load(8) will examine to
          find disk partitioning information.  By default, a partition
          table in a Plan 9 partition is consulted; if no such table
          is found, an old-Plan 9 partition table on the next-to-last
          or last sector of the disk is consulted.  A value of new

     PLAN9.INI(8)                                         PLAN9.INI(8)

          consults only the first table, old only the second.

          Causes boot(8) to look for MBR and Plan 9 partition tables
          on all sd(3) disks, even before factotum is started, so
          NVRAM, for example, may be found.  On PCs, 9load (but not
          9boot) normally does this and passes the partitions found in

          These specify the IP address of the file and authentication
          server to use when mounting a network-provided root file
          system.  They are used only if the addresses cannot be
          determined via DHCP.

          The PC kernel switches the processor to 16-bit real mode to
          run BIOS interrupts, for example to find the memory map or
          to enable VESA.  This variable disables such switches.

          When available, the PC kernel uses the BIOS E820 memory map
          to size memory.  This variable disables the scan.

          This defines the maximum physical address that the system
          will scan when sizing memory.  By default the PC operating
          system will scan up to 3.75 gigabytes (0xF0000000, the base
          of kernel virtual address space), but setting *maxmem will
          limit the scan.  *maxmem must be less than 3.75 gigabytes.
          This variable is not consulted if using the E820 memory map.

          This defines the percentage of available memory reserved for
          the kernel allocation pool.  The remainder is left for user
          processes.  The default percent is 30 on CPU servers, 60 on
          terminals with less than 16MB of memory, and 40 on terminals
          with memories of 16MB or more.  Terminals use more kernel
          memory because draw(3) maintains its graphic images in ker-
          nel memory.  This deprecated option is rarely necessary in
          newer kernels.

          If machine check exceptions are supported by the processor,
          then they are enabled by default.  Setting this variable to
          1 causes them to be disabled even when available.

          A multiprocessor machine will enable all processors by
          default.  Setting *nomp restricts the kernel to starting

     PLAN9.INI(8)                                         PLAN9.INI(8)

          only one processor and using the traditional interrupt con-

          Setting *ncpu restricts the kernel to starting at most cpus

          Limits the maximum bus number probed on a PCI bus (default
          7).  For example, a bno of 1 should suffice on a 'standard'
          motherboard with an AGP slot.  This, and *pcimaxdno below
          are rarely used and only on troublesome or suspect hardware.

          Limits the maximum device number probed on a PCI bus
          (default 31).

          Disable pci routing during boot.  May solve interrupt rout-
          ing problems on certain machines.

          Disable printing a stack dump on panic.  Useful if there is
          only a limited cga screen available, otherwise the textual
          information about the panic may scroll off.

          Specifies a list of ranges of I/O ports to exclude from use
          by drivers.  Ranges are inclusive on both ends and separated
          by commas.  For example:

          Specifies a list of ranges of UMB to exclude from use by
          drivers.  Ranges are inclusive on both ends and separated by
          commas.  For example:

          This enables the ``advanced power management'' interface as
          described in apm(3) and apm(8). The main feature of the
          interface is the ability to watch battery life (see
          stats(8)). It is not on by default because it causes prob-
          lems on some laptops.

          These are used not by the kernel but by termrc (see
          cpurc(8)) when starting vga(8).


     PLAN9.INI(8)                                         PLAN9.INI(8)

          This is used to specify the screen blanking behavior of the
          MGA4xx video driver.  Values are standby, suspend, and off.
          The first two specify differing levels of power saving; the
          third turns the monitor off completely.

        Multiple Configurations
          A plan9.ini file may contain multiple configurations, each
          within a block beginning with a line
          A special block with the tag menu gives a list of blocks
          from which the user may interactively select the contents of
          plan9.ini.  There may also be multiple blocks with the tag
          common which will be included in all selections; if any
          lines appear in plan9.ini before the first block, they are
          treated as a common block.

          Within the menu block the following configuration lines are

        menuitem=tag[, description]
          The block identified by tag will appear in the presented
          menu.  The menu entry will consist of the tag unless the
          optional description is given.

        menudefault=tag[, timeout]
          Identifies a default block to be given in the menu selection
          prompt.  If the optional timeout is given (in seconds), the
          default block will be selected if there is no user input
          within the timeout period.

        menuconsole=value[, baud]
          Selects a serial console upon which to present the menu as
          no console or baud configuration information will have been
          processed yet (the plan9.ini contents are still to be

          In response to the menu being printed, the user is prompted
          to select a menu item from the list.  If the numeric
          response is followed by a p, the selected configuration is
          printed and the menu presented again.

          The line
          is prefixed to the selected configuration as an aid to
          user-level initialization scripts.

          A representative plan9.ini:

               % cat /n/c:/plan9.ini

     PLAN9.INI(8)                                         PLAN9.INI(8)

               serial0=type=generic port=0x3E8 irq=5

          Minimum CONFIG.SYS and AUTOEXEC.BAT files to use COM2 as a

               % cat /n/c:/config.sys
               SHELL=COMMAND.COM COM2 /P
               % cat /n/c:/autoexec.bat
               @ECHO OFF
               PROMPT $p$g
               PATH C:\DOS;C:\BIN
               mode com2:96,n,8,1,p
               SET TEMP=C:\TMP

          Simple plan9.ini with multiple configurations:

               menuitem=vga, Plan 9 with VGA
               menuitem=novga, Plan 9 no automatic VGA



               audio0=type=sb16 port=0x220 irq=5 dma=1

          With this, the following menu will be presented on boot:

               Plan 9 Startup Menu:
                   1. Plan 9 with VGA
                   2. Plan 9 no automatic VGA

          Selecting item 1 generates the following plan9.ini to be
          used by the remainder of the bootstrap process:

               audio0=type=sb16 port=0x220 irq=5 dma=1

     PLAN9.INI(8)                                         PLAN9.INI(8)

          and selecting item 2:

               audio0=type=sb16 port=0x220 irq=5 dma=1

          9boot(8), booting(8), boot(8)

          Being able to set the console device to other than a display
          is marginally useful on file servers; MS-DOS and the pro-
          grams which run under it are so tightly bound to the display
          that it is necessary to have a display if any setup or
          reconfiguration programs need to be run.  Also, the delay
          before any messages appear at boot time is disconcerting, as
          any error messages from the BIOS are lost.

          This idea is at best an interesting experiment that needs
          another iteration.