[Gta04-owner] QtMoko v49

Neil Jerram neil at ossau.homelinux.net
Thu Nov 22 14:36:23 CET 2012

On Thursday, November 22, 2012 12:32:03, Radek Polak wrote:
> On Thursday, November 22, 2012 12:57:52 PM Neil Jerram wrote:
> > I'm inclined to prefer more simplicity here.  I'd like:
> > 
> > p1: distro 1 e.g. QtMoko
> > p2: distro 2 e.g. SHR
> > p3: distro 3 e.g. Replicant
> > p4: media, maps, docs
> > NAND: bootloader, Debian/LXDE
> > 
> > Demonstrating multiple OSes is important for me as part of showing off how
> > cool the GTA04 is.  (And also when there are specific applications only
> > provided by one OS.)
> With the gta04 init you can demonstrate booting between 10 oses.

OK, that's nice.

> > For rescue I'm happy to use a separate SD card, so I don't need an initial
> > FAT partition in my main card.
> Right, then you need 2 sdcards and i have to completely rewrite the gta04 init 
> code which uses config file in FAT on p1.
> > If the bootloader already allows me to choose between the distros, I don't
> > think I need gta04-init anymore - Radek, does gta04-init have other
> > benefits that I'm missing?
> Yes, i have written this like 3 times. E.g. copy paste from this [1]
> * you can select partition that you want to reboot to from QtMoko gui
> * you can boot to subdir on partition (2 or more systems on one partition)
> * it can autodetect rootfs type and it can boot e.g. from btrfs
> * it can boot from extended partitions
> * you can to write scripts (1.sh and 2.sh) to boot from network, squashfs or 
> whatever

I'm sorry for missing that. I didn't review the whole thread carefully enough.

None of those are important points for me right now, but I can see that gta04-init is more flexible, and that that flexibility may well be widely useful in future.

Out of interest, could it also help with simulating a multiple partition environment, to allow the current Replicant to run without really having the separate partitions that it requires?

> i could add few more like using rootsf which is compiled as module... but it 
> seems no one now wants it.
> I spent a lot of time on it and i am regullary using it. Until now it was only 
> solution for multiboot.
> The uboot menu is nice but it cant alone do what i am daily using. Currently i 
> have installed qtmoko-v48, qtmoko-v49, qtmoko with qt 4.9, qtmoko on armhf 
> rootfs, SHR and media partition. It's simply not possible with uboot.
> I can completely remove gta04-init from QtMoko and try to live with with just 
> 2 rootfses.
> I can finish gta04-init changes to play nice with uboot. Please note that your 
> partition where qtmoko is on p1 will work in this case too, but you will loose 
> gta04-init abilities.

I have two thoughts now.

1. We need to go back to the points that kicked off this discussion, namely (a) that some new GTA04 owners had accidentally messed up their boot system, and (b) that we want an overall setup that nicely supports multiple distributions.

Can you describe a gta04-init-based setup that addresses (a) ?  (It obviously already addresses (b).)

2. I don't like the asymmetry in your recommended partitioning scheme - i.e. that a distribution can go in four slightly different places: primary/root, primary/subdir, extended/root and extended/subdir.  It makes gta04 more difficult to understand, and appears to require foresight in partition planning.

If primary/subdir has no disadvantages, can gta04-init be simplified to support only that method, and still allow any number of OSes?

Then we could just have:

p1: gta04-init and rescue
p2: distributions
p3: media etc.

In the hope that this is helpful...


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