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Re: Sarge on WRT54G-like Embedded Device?

Quantum Scientific wrote:
> We are investigating the possibility of installing Sarge into an embedded 
> device with a Broadcom BCM4704KPB MIPS processor.
> I see that, although I believe MIPS processors are endian-agnostic, there are 
> two Debian releases?  I don't know which is suited to the 4704.  I've been 
> unable to get the datasheet.

MIPS CPUs can run in both endianness modes, this is determined by either
the board wiring or by the firmware. As a rule of thumb, the small
Broadcom CPUs tend to be used in little endian mode.

> This embedded device has the Broadcom processor with hardware IPSec and two 
> ethernet ports, 32MB flash, 128MB DDR SDRAM, a BCM5325A2 switch, JTag and 
> what looks like a serial port.

A basic Debian installation needs about 128 MB disk space, so you will
have to remove unwanted packages and documentation.

> My plan is to install Debian Sarge into a UML image for it and compile the 
> basic apps usually used in embedded devices. But how to determine which 
> drivers are appropriate, by just looking at the board?  I'd rather Debian 
> autosize the hardware if possible for things I don't know exist, in the 
> processor for example.  Which driver is best for this hardware IPSec?  The 
> Wifi radio is as yet unsupported in Linux, so has anyone used NDisWrapper in 
> embedded?

I have a hard time to understand this paragraph. What exactly do you
want to do?

> Am I best advised to set up Sarge and trim out the unneeded files (docs, etc), 
> or to just use a distro like OpenWRT?

This depends on the purpose. If you just want to run it as a WAP, then
OpenWRT seems to be a good choice.

> Are there any special toolchain 
> considerations for this processor/ would Broadcom have a free toolchain?

The processor is to my knowledge MIPS32 ISA compatible, this shouldn't
pose any problem.


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