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Re: [MirageOS-devel] Mirage ARM port

On 10 Apr 2014, at 16:39, Andy Ray <andy.ray@xxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

> Hi,
> I've been discussing the ARM port of Mirage with Anil recently and
> would like to get involved helping to bring that up.
> Initially it would be to target a Raspberry Pi (finally something I
> can use it for!) but eventually I'm interested in getting it running
> on an Altera Cyclone V Soc with dual-core ARM Cortex-A9s.

Interesting -- is there a particular dev board that I can get that
embeds this SoC?

> I understand there are 2 approaches - using a FreeBSD kernel module or
> building up from scratch with a mini OS and implementing some device
> drivers.  I'm easy either way.
> I've never used a BSD but I have hacked a realtime linux OS onto an
> ARM Soc before so I know there be dragons ahead...

The BSD dragons are far more cuddly than the Linux ones :-)

I'd say that upstreaming the FreeBSD kernel module prototype would be
a good intermediate step before a full port because:

- it's mostly already there due to Gabor Pali's excellent work last summer.
- can progressively swap out physical device drivers with OCaml equivalents.
- good opportunity to tidy up the MiniOS layer and cross-compilation bits
  before cramming it all into a SoC.
- can mostly work on x86 (e.g. in a VM) and then swap over to ARM after.
  I find this easier but the reverse may be true if you're an ARM guru...
- there's already a good FreeBSD rPi port -- and maybe for the Cyclone?

To figure out how to upstream this properly, we do need to figure out the
state of the various MiniOS branches.  Thomas Leonard is currently working
on a Xen/ARM/MiniOS port as a fairly standalone effort, and Hwanju Kim
is looking at a PVHVM MiniOS port -- both are in early days so far, but
any comments or trees we should look at?

I put Gabor's instructions for his prototype up at:

Installing a FreeBSD VM in the background now to recreate it...it managed
to serve the full mirage-www website when he left it.


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