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Re: Debian powerpc binary compatibility?

On Fri, Sep 17, 2010 at 01:48:19PM +0400, Sergei Poselenov wrote:
> - What exact target CPU it is built for? I see here
>   http://www.debian.org/ports/powerpc/inst/install the list of
>   supported machines, but how can I understand will the Debian binaries
>   work on my board with the specific CPU?
>   Is it possible, knowing only the specific CPU type (440, 603, 8540,
>   8560, etc) to say will it run Debian PowerPC Distro or not?
>   (I understand that there should be a kernel supporting the specific
>   board; I'm rather interested in the instructions set used by GCC to
>   build the binary images for Debian powerpc distro. In short - what
>   "-mcpu=" GCC option is used for build?)

I believe "-mcpu=generic" is used, except for perhaps certain kernels.
As you pointed out, if there's a kernel for it, Debian powerpc will run
on that type of chip.  There may be specially-compiled versions of some
packages that use Altivec, but there should be a generic version for
those as well.

You can try running "gcc -v" and see what host, build, target, and
with-tune are set to.

> - We are considering to rebuild the Debian distribution, to
>   tune the packages for the specific CPU type (enable hardware FP
>   support, etc).
>   I now the Debian powerpc distro is built natively. Are there any
>   details of the build process available, so we could use it in our
>   build system?

Normally when you build a package with dpkg-buildpackage, it sets
certain environment variables to a default value (for example, CFLAGS=-g
-O2).  You may be able to modify that slightly for your needs.  Note
that that doesn't guarantee that the package in question won't override

brian m. carlson / brian with sandals: Houston, Texas, US
+1 832 623 2791 | http://www.crustytoothpaste.net/~bmc | My opinion only
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