[uClinux-dev] Adding new board support [& other questions]

Bruce Paterson bruce at tele-ip.com
Sun Nov 18 21:38:04 EST 2001

Tom Walsh wrote:
> First of all, let me apologize for the tone of the reply, you deserved
> more respect.  I was having a bad day and really should have been more
> carefull in the wording.

Apology accepted -:)
> of time in collecting together information about uClinux.  His site is
> at: http://uClinux.home.at

I've been there. Someone mentioned on the list recently and thats how I
it. Someone also said it shoudl be pointed to by the official site.
Can't agree
Unfortunately it didn't have much in the way of application
which is what I'm after. 
Greg suggested I google on each one, and at the very least I will put
all the bookmarks I find useful and throw that in a document for the
No doubt it will experience link rot quickly, but it'll be a start.
It may be hard to make comparisons still though, since developers tend
to be
quite upbeat about their own creations of course (ever read all the
comments in
a standard distribution install ?).

> The current distro, done by Greg Ungerer, is a quantum leap above what
> we had been working with before.  The distro is well put together of
> apps, and kernels (2.0 & 2.4) that work together.  Before Greg started
> issuing these distros, we had a hodge-podge of libraries and apps that
> were problematic to use.

Yes. I tried the to compile the latest CVS 2.4 uClibc and 2.4 kernel and
into all sorts of errors, but Greg's distro seems much cleaner.
> Porting to a new platform is not documented (AFAIK), but is relatively
> easy.  One of the first platforms to use uClinux was the uCsimm.  When I

Actually I'm already past that stage. I have 2.0.31 running fine on my
with some pre-packaged apps from the original 68360 release. I actually
exactly the "find" you suggested to find all the files I had to mod.
since mod-ed all the similar files in Gregs 2.4 release prior to
the make, and made my own vendor tree entry.

> ported uClinux to my M68EZ328 platform, I simply did a:
> find . -type f | xargs fgrep -l CONFIG_UCSIMM
> in the root of the uClinux kernel source tree.  This gave me a list of
> files to consider as to what changes I had to make for my platform (then
> the CONFIG_EZ328SIMM).  I then edited the files, found the conditionals
> for UCSIMM and added my own conditionals as needed.  The crt0.S (system
> kernel startup) is the one file you will have to write to match your
> platform (hardware initialization, placing the .bss, .text, and .data
> sections into their proper place in RAM).  The adjustments / additions
> made to the kernel source are  relatively minor and is just to map your
> RAM to the kernel resources (memory management and romfs location).

Make the above paragraph a starting point for a document about porting
submit it to the website.
> > > > It would certainly help if every module had a footprint size (rom & ram)
> > > > and an
> > > > indicator of functionality (maybe peg standard linux distribution
> > > > versions as 100%)

I can see the problem with different platforms/memory options changing
the size
of the code. It's probably rare, though, that application
will "swap" positions in a size comparison when moving architectures. 
Possibly a size as compiled for an Intel PC might at least provide a
basis for comparisons. I agree it's a bastard to have to do this though.

At the end of the day everyone has to make these choices, be it by size,
required, reliability or rumour. 
Anyone suggest a better way ?

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