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Re: FOSDEM thoughts

On Mon, 25 Feb 2008, Christian T. Steigies wrote:

> > Getting the coldfire port working would be nice, yes... I believe that 
> > would bring in fresh blood and a general boost for debian-68k/cf...
> We had a discussion with Aurelien, Geert and Sven about coldfire. The 
> consensus was that we should not make cf a separate port, since we would 
> probably loose all m68k developers in that case. I personally am 
> interested in cf only if it can help m68k,

That is my interest too. But surely that argues against your first 
statement about losing developers?

What concerns me is that both 680x0 and CF code would be compromised if 
one port were to try to support both.

I don't know if anyone can confirm this example, but it looks like no-one 
gets to use div without adding compatibility code,


It seems to me that since supporting CF will be detrimental to our port in 
terms of performance (especially when compared to aranym as a means to 
help), then it can't fly because 680x0 users just don't have performance 
to burn.

> if I want something "new", I would go powerpc, I need an excuse to get a 
> PS3 ;-) Also we would probably share the fate of arm/armel. armel will 
> be in lenny+1 but arm will be removed after lenny to not further 
> increase the load on the mirrors, I am afraid m68k would be dropped 
> completely if we ask for a new cf port.

Surely it is just a matter of CF reaching critical mass in the market. 
When that happens the necessary developers, hardware and rationale for a 
CF-only port will outweigh the objections of the FTP masters. And surely 
that has no implications for any existing ports.

The fact that Freescale and CodeSourcery have essentially given those 
hypothetical CF-only port users the ABI, and the kernel, C library and 
toolchain ports means that the best way to meet the needs of those 
hypothetical users will be a CF-only port, lest those users miss out on 
what amounts to corporate sponsorship.

And since there can be no binary compatibility between hybrid or CF-only 
code and existing code, I must agree with Michael Casadevall that the best 
way is a seperate port (or none at all in the absence of demand).

IMHO, Aranym means that 680x0 users don't stand to benefit much anymore, 
so let the hypothetical future CF users worry about their own port. 

Michael also aluded to the fact that the similarities between the two 
architectures mean that a future CF port will benefit from a healthy 680x0 
port regardless. Likewise, debian-m68k would enjoy "a general boost" (to 
borrow Ingo's words) even from a seperate debian-cf port.


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