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Re: Resurrecting Debian on SPARC

On Tue, Sep 15, 2015 at 9:32 AM, John Paul Adrian Glaubitz <glaubitz@physik.fu-berlin.de> wrote:
On 09/15/2015 04:10 PM, waz0wski wrote:
> I would love to see Debian-on-SPARC continue on, even if not fully
> supported, similar to how the FreeBSD project handles sparc64[1]

Ok, the question is: Do we want sparc32 as well or just sparc64? As
I mentioned already, sparc32 (32-bit userland and 64-bit kernel -
where supported) most likely needs less porting and should be
easier to be kept up-to-date than sparc64.

My two cents: if you have limited efforts, then 64-bit sparc only is the most future proof. Ideally though, you would not use 64-bit binaries unless it made sense, because 64-bit binaries on sparc are usually slower. There is no magic "64-bit is faster" on sparc like there is on x86. 32-bit binaries are not the same as supporting ancient SPARC CPUs which are 32-bit only. All binaries should be built for SPARCv9 ISA, which is the ISA that supports 64-bit processing. 32-bit sparc binaries using v9 ISA is more similar to the new(ish) "x32" ISA for x86 CPUs, where pointers are mapped <= 4GB, but registers are still 64-bits wide.

However, both 32-bit and 64-bit SPARC packages can be built on
64-bit machines using different build chroots.

> I have access to a couple of UltraSPARC T2 systems (T5220/T5440) which
> could be made available for development and testing purposes -- ping me
> off-list for more info.

I will come back to that.


 .''`.  John Paul Adrian Glaubitz
: :' :  Debian Developer - glaubitz@debian.org
`. `'   Freie Universitaet Berlin - glaubitz@physik.fu-berlin.de
  `-    GPG: 62FF 8A75 84E0 2956 9546  0006 7426 3B37 F5B5 F913

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