JP Vossen on 6 Feb 2013 02:26:30 -0800

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[PLUG] CentOS-5.x console font troubles

I'm have a problem that's driving me crazy and I'm really hoping someone here has a clue. I can't get the console font to behave. Stock CentOS-5.x 64-bit, stock kernel, runlevel 3 only, no GUI, no X (not even installed). Except... 5.2 and 5.6 work, and 5.8 and 5.9 don't.

This is not a VM issue because I have the same problem on real hardware (Dell R710/R720), it's just easier to try and solve using the VMs and the VMs are more consistent, since it's actually the *same* VM. So...

I have a CentOS-5.6 VM that gives me an 80x60 console font. This is good, I need this. But I can't figure out where it is set. '/boot/grub/menu.lst' does NOT have "vga=6" and '/etc/sysconfig/i18n' and '/etc/sysconfig/init' are stock, as is the kernel. Note, it doesn't switch font size until it says the following during boot (kudzu), but once it switches it stays switched.
	Welcome to CentOS release 5.6 (Final)
	Press I to enter interactive startup
	Setting clock

After taking a snapshot I upgraded the VM to CentOS-5.9 and now it's odd. The font starts normal VGA, switches to the small font I need at "Welcome to CentOS release 5.9 (Final)", immediately switches back to VGA and does a clear screen, does some more things, does a clear screen and switches to small again at "Entering non-interactive...", does some stuff, clear screen, switches to large, then at "Starting iSCSI daemon..." it goes back and stays at large VGA. (I'm assuming the "clear screens" are really resolution or mode switches and not deliberate 'clear' commands.)

All I did was upgrade from CentOS-5.6 to 5.9, though admittedly that changes a whole lot.

If I add "vga=6" or "nomodeset vga=6" to '/boot/grub/menu.lst' it gets really weird. The font switches right away, but then still flips back and forth while udev is running, then I end up with normal VGA which is not what I need.

Anyone have a clue how to force 80x60 to stay in effect on CentOS-5.9? I need it to not flip around because that looks ugly and I am losing boot messages during the "clear screens" and then I need it to stay at 80x60 because I'm displaying data on the TTYs after boot that won't fit otherwise.

JP Vossen, CISSP            |:::======|
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