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Re: Status of armel in the archive?

2008/1/30, Luk Claes <luk@debian.org>:
> On Wed, Jan 02, 2008 at 10:32:55AM +0100, Marc 'HE' Brockschmidt wrote:
> > [armel]'s quality is at least matching the current arm port

> > Could you please comment on the current status and list outstanding
> > issues blocking the inclusion of armel in the archive?

Well, since no one else has actually answered the question...

In unstable, arm is at 95.69% of the archive, while armel is at 91.94%

Of the lacking packages, the lion's share is due to lack of language support.
gcc-3 is not supported in armel and never will be, which excludes g77
and everything that uses it. The success of armel therefore depends on
the success of the g77->gfortran transition.

Objective C does not work on armel, which knocks out gnustep. ARM are
now funding CodeSourcery to make the necessary modifications to gcc.
It remains to be seen which mainline version this will go into -
probably gcc-4.4, since 4.3 is now open only to regression fixes,
while lenny's current default gcc is 4.2 with some people pressing for
it to be 4.3. Debian may have to carry these modifications as patches.

Other packages either don't compile or don't work on armel, including
some that are included in the repository but do not work at all, of
which the most high-profile are iceweasel and iceape-browser.
Unfortunately there is currently no public bug tracker for issues
other than the wiki pages; that would be one advantage of inclusion in

The advantage of armel over arm from a normal user's point of view is
the immense increase in floating point speed (a factor of 11) plus the
possibility of using current hardware FPUs (for a further factor of
between 2.5 and 7)
The disadvantage is that it requires armv4t processors, excluding
older ARMv4-based systems (CATS, NetWinder, Balloon 2). The simplest
way to circumvent this would be to patch the kernel to emulate the
missing BX instruction.

wiki.debian.org/armelLennyReleaseRecertification summarises its
certification status
wiki.debian.org/ArmEabiTodo givean overview of the main issues
wiki.debian.org/ArmEabiProblems is the closest we have to a public bug

> arm will be supported on lenny...
I think that is highly desirable. The arm port is more mature and more
functional at present


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