Re: Status of NetBSD port?
On Mon, Jan 19, 2004 at 05:16:42PM +0000, Matthew Garrett wrote:
> On Mon, Jan 19, 2004 at 09:00:05AM -0600, John Goerzen wrote:
> > 1. Exactly how much of the NetBSD port comes from NetBSD and how much
> > comes from Debian? Is, for example, the NetBSD base system used in its
> > entirety, or are only necessary things like ifconfig pulled in from
> > there?
> There's two answers to that. The original port would be based on the
> NetBSD kernel and C library. The way I'd envisioned it would be that
> base software like ifconfig and mount would be brought in from NetBSD,
> with Debian magic wrapping software like ifupdown modified to suit. The
> rest of the base system would probably be GNU. Basically, stuff that
> needs to know what kernel it's on would be NetBSD except in the cases of
> a generic GNU version existing and being used in Debian.
That sounds excellent to me. It makes a lot of sense.
> The second effort was started up by Robert Millan and uses glibc. I'm
> not clear on how this interacts with stuff that's more tightly bound to
> the kernel, but I'd expect it to contain at least as much GNU userland
> as the other one.
This confuses me; http://www.gnu.org/software/libc/porting.html doesn't
mention that glibc runs on any BSD platform.
But then it brings up the question: say I want to install Debian
GNU/NetBSD to do some experimentation. How do I choose which option I
want? There Debian NetBSD port page doesn't seem to differentiate.
> > 3. Where could I best contribute to the port? Would an autobuilder be
> > useful? (I do have experience running those; I used to run the one for
> > our Alpha port.)
> Ha :) An autobuilder would certainly be useful, but currently the main
> trick would be installing one. My previous hacked install system isn't
> going to be much use at the moment.
I have no problem with installing NetBSD on a machine, then untarring or
unpacking some .debs into a chrooted area, and going from there. What
about the "experimental install floppies" from October 2002?
> > 4. Is there any infrastructure on debian.org machines for this? (Areas
> > on sid, etc.) or does one have to use the ucam.org repository?
> The ucam.org repository should probably be considered a historical
> artifact at this point - I should really lose it and update the website.
In that case, it appears there are no repositories at all (the
lightbearer.com one appears unreachable). Is that correct?
> "Official" infrastructure is likely to be waiting until the ftpmasters
> decide what the best approach to the potential proliferation of
> architectures is.
Makes sense, but maybe we can hurry them along (heh).
> > 5. Has any thought been given to supporting the non-i386 ports of
> > NetBSD?
> I did some preliminary work on Alpha and Sparc. It involves a small
> amount of toolchain pain, but other than that there didn't seem to be
> much that was platform specific. Alpha has the advantage that it
I have an Alpha supported by Debian and NetBSD. It should be noted,
though, that Linux also supports some Alpha hardware that NetBSD doesn't
(anything that must boot through MILO is unsupported in BSDland)
Anyway, it was more of an aside. I have access to vmware so I am in a
good position to try out stuff on i386 without blowing up any important
Speaking of the toolchain... given that gcc is used directly by the
NetBSD folks, what exactly is the pain in this department? Couldn't we
just build our .debs of it the same way they build and install it?