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Finishing notes: MTD Embedded Onboard flash Partitioning and Installion


The short story:

I did not achieve my proposed goal for my Google Summer of
Cod project because of things I did not know about I wrote the
proposal. Flip-side: There is now a solid foundation for future work.

I have learned a lot, met a lot of interesting people, and will
continue my involvment with Debian.

(Read the long story!!)

The long story:

I started out with a project proposal to add support to Debian
installer (d-i) for UBI [0,1]. My original thought was that this was
possible to do entirely by packaging existing tools and adding
a mechanism for configuring UBI to d-i/partman.

By the mid-term evaluation I had a hackish showcase monolithic iso,
showing this as a proof of concept. I also realized that this might not
be enough. The thing I did not understand when I wrote my proposal
was that d-i/partman is very dependent on GNU Parted [2], and if
support for a device is not in Parted it will be very awkward to add it
to d-i/partman.

The week after mid-term (and during DebConf9) I perfomed a thorough
investigation and decided that the way to go was to add support for MTD
and UBI to GNU Parted. Wookey and I also re-evaluated the goals and
 schedule for the rest of the project. The new goal was to have at least
GNU Parted understanding MTD flash by the end of summer.

Since mid-term this is what I have been working with, the first week or
so was mainly struggling with getting it building at all. Otavio and Colin
helped out with during DebConf9, big thanks! The started out with me
researching how Parted works and an assesment of what was needed.
The remaining time I have been adding support for MTD to Parted and
tuning the same. I have pushed my work so far to Alioth. [3]

Results, outline for future work, and instructions to build are on the
Debian wiki. [4]

Best regards,

[0] Unsorted Block Images
[1] http://www.linux-mtd.infradead.org/doc/ubi.html
[2] http://www.gnu.org/software/parted/index.shtml
[3] http://git.debian.org/?p=users/avtobiff-guest/parted.git;a=summary
[4] http://wiki.debian.org/DebianInstaller/MTD

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