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Re: REQUEST: Official Debian AmigaOne support


Thanks for answering!

-------- Original-Nachricht --------
Datum: Tue, 17 Apr 2007 23:20:13 +0200
Von: Frans Pop <elendil@planet.nl>
An: debian-boot@lists.debian.org
CC: Gerhard Pircher <gerhard_pircher@gmx.net>
Betreff: Re: REQUEST: Official Debian AmigaOne support

> (I'm CC'ing you on this first mail; for any follow-ups I'll assume you
> are subscribed to the list.)
I'm only subscribed to debian-powerpc until now.

> On Tuesday 17 April 2007 22:22, Gerhard Pircher wrote:
> > I know that cross-posting is not wanted (I posted this message already
> > on debian-powerpc with the title "Help needed for Debian AmigaOne
> > support"), but I guess debian-powerpc is more "user" oriented (correct
> > me if I'm wrong).
> No, the debian-powerpc list should also be a porter list and be able to 
> help with porting issues, but in general you can just not force people to 
> care about your pet project: if nobody replies that could just mean that 
> nobody was interested enough in the issue...
I know, but obviously only debian-boot is attended by the developers I
wanted to get through to.

> > I'm asking for help to add support for the AmigaOne (desktop PPC) to
> > Debian GNU/Linux. Currently AmigaOne users have to install a Debian
> > Woody base system, before they can upgrade to/install sarge or etch
> > (also there is no other GNU/Linux distribution available for the A1 ATM
> > and therefore A1 users are pushing me to create a Debian install CD ;)
> > ).
> As long as you realize that you (AmigaOne community, not necessarily you 
> personally) will have to do most of the actual work and research 
> yourself, you are very welcome to do so.
Okay, if you think of AmigaOne community as the poeple working on Linux 
support for the A1, well then I'm the only one...unfortunately. :(
I know that I would have to do most of the work, but Debian support for the 
AmigaOne would help the platform to get into the official kernel tree.

> The first step is the kernel. Without official support in the current 
> Debian kernel packages there is no point in even starting on inclusion in 
> the installer. For help with the kernel you should contact the
> debian-kernel list, or possibly the debian-powerpc list.
That's bad. The patch for kernel 2.6.16.x would have been adequate for
inclusion in the official kernel tree (IMHO), but the ppc to powerpc arch 
change made that impossible (it's hard to keep up with kernel development
these days, as it's just a hobby for me).

> Note that for Debian kernel support any patches to the kernel source code 
> will need to be pushed upstream into official kernel releases. The kernel 
> team does not accept major patches just for Debian.
> You also say that "support for A1 firmware" needs to be included. 
> Inclusion of firmware itself is in general an extremely difficult subject 
> because of licencing and sourcecode issues; it's not completely clear 
> what you mean by "support" though.
I just thought about support for U-boot kernel images (U-boot is GPL). That
would include a debian package for the mkimage program (converts a zImage 
to a uImage, it's GPL, too) and the necessary modifications for the 
make-kpkg program to compile kernel packages that includes a kernel image 
in the uImage format.

> There is also the issue that the powerpc kernel already has a lot of 
> different flavors and there may be some resistance to adding another one 
> if that should be needed.
Well, the powerpc kernel tree supports newer U-boots (with support for device trees) and kernel 2.6.22 should include a new bootwrapper for old U-boots (for firmware that can't be upgraded for some reason). I don't see 
any reason why the A1 shouldn't be support in the Linux kernel, as it is 
a normal G3/G4 PPC system (with some bugs for which the Linux kernel 
already provides workarounds).

> Cheers,



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