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Re: Various kernel image flavours (Was: Re: debian on cobalt raq1)

On Wed, Dec 20, 2006 at 02:26:00PM +0100, Jens Seidel wrote:
> I know about the endian issue. But apart from it, are the
> subarchitectures really so different from each other?
> Shouldn't at least all support MIPS 1 ISA?  
> Even if we consider also 32 vs. 64 bit kernels (or can each 64 bit hardware
> run a 32 bit kernel?) I count only 2*2 = 4 possible combinations.

The problem is not only that you have 4 combinations. Some architectures
simply dont support 64 bit (R3k based). They might differ by load
address or image time (Some bootloaders/proms may only load ecoff, some
elf). Just have a look ar arch/mips/Makefile and you'll see the
different load addresses.

> I know from Intel architectures that one common kernel together with
> a set of kernel modules is sufficent!

Intel aka the PEEECEE is ALL THE SAME. The have a minimum standard what
the CPU/System has to support and since 30 years the drag the backward
compatibility around (e.g. A20 Gate). So a current kernel compiled for
i386 boots on modern hardware and on the original i386 introduced in the
stone ages.

Most mips systems are build from the ground up new and do not drag the
backward compatibility around so you need to provide a complete
different set of drivers, load addresses, boot loader interfaces, binary
format etc.

Florian Lohoff                  flo@rfc822.org             +49-171-2280134
                        Heisenberg may have been here.

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