[Buildroot] [RFC] ti-gfx: add new package

Charles Krinke charles.krinke at gmail.com
Fri Jun 14 20:58:57 UTC 2013

Dear Thomas:

Behind my comments is the issue of TI's practices and I hope we dont
make it worse by tweaking buildroot in an unusual direction, but I
will, as usual, follow your lead.

My perspective is from working with the TI AM3517_evm for the last
year. One of the issues is the fact that TI supplies their kernel
source out-of-tree as a distribution release. As a consequence no one
cannot expect kernel.org kernels to work properly for at least this
reference design.  That is, the TI kernel modifications never made it
into the mainline kernel, so we have a non-kernel.org situation to
start with. This should cause buildroot to tread carefully unless we
also get the patches from TI that change a standard kernel into a
TI-special kernel.

On the Graphics_SDK, since this is a product that TI releases along
with their kernel from time-to-time. Since this is also not an
opensource project, I have some angst with patching the released
Graphics_SDK. This doesnt make any sense to me since this product
along with the kernel are releases from TI.

So, I guess the key issue is mixing distribution releases from a
vendor with traditional, well-known opensource projects and how
buildroot can best move forward.

On 6/14/13, Thomas Petazzoni <thomas.petazzoni at free-electrons.com> wrote:
> Dear Charles Krinke,
> On Thu, 13 Jun 2013 07:11:18 -0700, Charles Krinke wrote:
>> On Spenser's patch, my comments to the RFC remain the same and those
>> are 1) Graphics_SDK should not be a part of buildroot and 2) A kernel
>> build should be independent of the root file system.
> Sorry, but you're wrong on both points I believe:
>  (1) The whole point of the ti-gfx package that Spenser is doing, and
>      the whole point of the GSoC project Spenser is working on is
>      *precisely* to create Buildroot packages for many binary blobs /
>      special kernel modules that are needed to enable OpenGL, EGL and
>      other similar technologies on ARM SoCs. So, we definitely want
>      such packages to automatically download, extract, configure, build
>      and install whatever is necessary to enable the usage of such
>      technologies, and this, without requiring special intervention
>      from the Buildroot user. Just like all the other packages we have.
>      The fact that the Graphics_SDK thing is pretty huge to download is
>      just due to the poor TI practices in terms of packaging and
>      releases, and there's not much we can do about it. And anyway,
>      Buildroot users willing to enable complex technologies such as
>      OpenGL are most likely ready to download fairly large packages.
>  (2) The Graphics_SDK contains some kernel modules. They have to be
>      built against a Linux kernel tree that has been configured and
>      built. The only way to do that in Buildroot is to depend on the
>      'linux' package, which triggers a build of the Linux kernel. This
>      is completely normal, and I really don't see how it could be done
>      otherwise. That's already what we do for a number of other
>      packages that contain kernel modules, such as linux-fusion,
>      lttng-modules or rtai.
>      So the build of the root filesystem (which contains kernel
>      modules) cannot be fully independent from the build of the kernel.
> It would be interesting if you could expand on why (1) or (2) are
> causing problems for you, in the light of the above explanations.
> Best regards,
> Thomas Petazzoni
> --
> Thomas Petazzoni, Free Electrons
> Kernel, drivers, real-time and embedded Linux
> development, consulting, training and support.
> http://free-electrons.com

Charles Krinke

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