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Re: Sarge on WRT54G-like Embedded Device?

Quantum Scientific wrote:
> The BCM4704KPB processor has certain peripherals built in.  Such as an IPSec 
> hardware engine, two ethernet ports, and more which I may not know about.
> I would like to load drivers for all devices, but may not know them all, 
> because I cannot find a datasheet for the 4704.  Hopefully the kernel would 
> load the correct modules automatically, but I cannot depend on that.  Is 
> there a good way to determine which are the correct modules, when I do not 
> have a datasheet for the processor?

Ah, I see. Mips is a different to x86 in that regard, as there is no
generic kernel. This is due to the wide range the mips CPUs scale, and
the use of various incompatible firmware solutions instead of a single
mostly-compatible BIOS. 

Supporting this device needs an appropriate kernel binary. The support
can _probably_ be integrated with debian's xxs-1500, but I don't know
enough about the differences to say something more palpable.

> With respect to the toolchain, I would like to know whether it matters that 
> the processor has these internal peripherals?  In the manufacturer's GPL area 
> is there normally a toolchain specific to their device?  I would rather use a 
> device-specific toolchain if it is available, rather than Debian's.

This depends on what you get as toolchain. Vendors tend to use some old
gcc which was hacked up to support more modern mips CPUs better, in that
case I would prefer Debian's gcc-3.3 an day.

> In the manufacturer's GPL area, are there normally -scripts- to compile the 
> source and package it into a firmware image?  

Well, depends on the manufacturer, but generally I wouldn't expect
much help from there.

> Is user-mode linux the best way to develop for embedded devices?  Is Qemu the 
> best way to emulate MIPS little-endian on a Pentium3?

Neither is, because UML isn't there for mips, an mips support in qemu
is currently worked on. You may want to have a look at
http://www.linux-mips.org/, there is a section about emulators, and much
more useful information.

> If I wanted to add something like the newest USAGI IPV6 to a 2.4 kernel, would 
> there likely be a problem in compiling?

No mips-specific one.


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