[Buildroot] [PATCH] linux-headers: Account for LINUX_OVERRIDE_SRCDIR

Andrey Smirnov andrew.smirnov at gmail.com
Fri Jan 13 16:19:02 UTC 2017

On Thu, Jan 12, 2017 at 2:18 PM, Arnout Vandecappelle <arnout at mind.be> wrote:
> On 12-01-17 18:19, Andrey Smirnov wrote:
>> On Thu, Jan 12, 2017 at 12:17 AM, Arnout Vandecappelle <arnout at mind.be> wrote:
>>> On 11-01-17 20:56, Andrey Smirnov wrote:
>>>> Use the value of LINUX_OVERRIDE_SRCDIR as override directory when
>>>> BR2_KERNEL_HEADERS_AS_KERNEL is specified.
>>>  Good catch! However, I'm not entirely convinced that we really want this.
>>>  A typical workflow would be to start from an upstream kernel, build a toolchain
>>> and userspace with it, and then begin with hacking on the kernel to e.g. add a
>>> driver. In that case it's rather unlikely that we really want to rebuild the
>>> toolchain, because the headers don't change.
>> I agree that typical "good day" workflow would be just as you
>> described. However, IMHO, there's also a "bad day" variant of that
>> workflow where "hacking on the kernel" implies "hacking on kernel
>> headers"(*cough* custom ioctls *cough*), which is also followed up by
>> a user-space tool that uses those changes and as such has
>> 'linux-headers' as a dependency.
>  Certainly, but in that specific case you can easily set both

There doesn't seem to be any configuration option that requires the
user to ever change the source of linux-headers, and this particular
quirk doesn't seem to be described in OVERRIDE_SRCDIR section either,
so how would I know that I need to do what you describe?

The only way that I see, which was precisely my personal experience,
is to get my package built with incorrect version of the headers (best
case scenario build failure, worst you go and debug "issues", that are
really not and are just a result of a broken assumption about
code-changes propagation) and then spend some quality time looking
into Buildroot source and trying to understand what going on, and
_then_ learn.

IMHO, this behavior of Buildroot is a _bug_ in either its
documentation or source code, and I find it a bit confusing that so
far we were discussing this as if it were a feature.

>>>  That said, another possible scenario is that you don't configure any kernel
>>> version but just use the OVERRIDE_SRCDIR to point to a local directory. Since we
>>> removed the BR2_LINUX_KERNEL_CUSTOM_LOCAL, it's the only way to support that
>>> scenario. In addition, the principle of least surprise would suggest that
>>> BR2_KERNEL_HEADERS_AS_KERNEL would really work all the time, even if
>>>  In short, I'm not really sure what is the best thing to do here. On thing though...
>>>> Signed-off-by: Andrey Smirnov <andrew.smirnov at gmail.com>
>>>> ---
>>>>  package/linux-headers/linux-headers.mk | 1 +
>>>>  1 file changed, 1 insertion(+)
>>>> diff --git a/package/linux-headers/linux-headers.mk b/package/linux-headers/linux-headers.mk
>>>> index 0900778..197efb4 100644
>>>> --- a/package/linux-headers/linux-headers.mk
>>>> +++ b/package/linux-headers/linux-headers.mk
>>>> @@ -10,6 +10,7 @@
>>>>  ifeq ($(BR2_KERNEL_HEADERS_AS_KERNEL),y)
>>>  ... At least we should use ?= here so it is still possible to override each one
>>> separately.
>> I am more than happy to replace '=' with '?=', but I have to ask, why
>> would you ever want to do that? Why would you configure your build
>> system such that kernel headers are "Same as kernel being build" and
>> then set you kernel source and kernel header source to point at
>> different locations?
>  Because the canonical way to work is that your BR2_LINUX_KERNEL_CUSTOM_REPO_URL
> points to your custom repository, and you just use LINUX_OVERRIDE_SRCDIR while
> doing the kernel development. So the application developers only use the updated
> kernel after it's explicitly been released. The kernel developer typically
> doesn't want to rebuild the toolchain when he switches on LINUX_OVERRIDE_SRCDIR.

OK, I guess I'd argue that the kernel developer typically doesn't want
to rebuild the toolchain when they do any minor kernel version change,
not just when that version happened to be set to "custom", why does
this have to be a special case?

Can't the speedup be accomplished by either "cp -r
build/linux-headers-blah build/linux-headers-custom" or "override
LINUX_HEADERS_OVERRIDE_SRCDIR = " without adding any special
provisions for that?


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