[Gta04-owner] Second Debian Status Update

Josua Mayer josua.mayer97 at gmail.com
Mon Sep 18 22:25:11 CEST 2017


Greetings everybody,

After a long pause I have yet again found some freetime to tinker with
the gta04.
So first I'd like to revisit the current status (tested on an A4):

Stretch:
No changes from last update
- integration with flash-kernel package is missing
- charging doesn't work (as expected)
  cat /sys/class/power_supply/twl4030_ac/status
  Not charging
- WiFi doesn't work. Hmm. Attaching a log of booting stretch with the
4.9.0-3 Debian kernel.

Testing:
- currently on kernel 4.12.6
- charging doesn't work

experimental linux-image-4.13.0-trunk-armmp_4.13.1-1~exp1_armhf.deb:
- charging doesn't work here either
  Any ideas why?
- WiFi doesn't work
  Neither does it work on the A5, but there not even the wl18xx module
comes up on its own.
This is the one I think we should work on fixing, if it is just a matter
of missing kernel config options. There is little need for thoroughly
testing the earlier kernel packages.

To Do:
- figure out nand flash partitionining (see below)
- update the big gta04 boot.txt to properly integrate Distro-Boot feature
- integrate with flash-kernel - see #871792
- try making the debian kernel package smaller - see #772628 for one idea
- is it feasible to get the required patchsets that made it into 4.13,
included in the Stretch kernel package?

#871792: https://bugs.debian.org/cgi-bin/bugreport.cgi?bug=871792
#772628: https://bugs.debian.org/cgi-bin/bugreport.cgi?bug=772628

And now a few notes on what I mean by figuring out nand flash:
- who figures out the root= argument: u-boot? Debian? flash-kernel package?
- where does the kernel come from? the kernel partition in nand-flash?
If so, is it an uImage or a zImage?
- where does the initrd come from? How does u-boot know its name on
filesystem, or location in flash?
- should u-boot just load a boot.scr or extlinux.conf from the rootfs in
nand? That might mean kernel and initrd are both in the rootfs.
- And finally a short-coming of flash-kernel package: It does understand
putting an uImage to nand-flash, but it does *not* differentiate where
the rootfs is.
  So either we get a database entry into flash-kernel for uImage in nand
flash, or we get an entry in there for generating a boot.scr.
  Note that this is the real reason for all questions above!

I would propose this solution:
- remove kernel partition in favor of a slightly bigger rootfs
- fetch boot-script, kernel and initrd from whatever filesystem is on there
- let u-boot come up with the bootargs, including root= set to whatever
parttiion is being booted
This way the process looks the same for nand flash and microSD, and the
flash-kernel entry would be sane.

What are your opinions here?
Any ideas how Debian should be installed in nand flash, and how
flash-kernel package should take care of updates?

On another note: What is my time best spent on now?
Going through the FSO packages and checking why they do(don't) currently
work on Debian, and are not even properly in testing?

Revisit QtMoko?

best regards
Josua Mayer

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