[Letux-kernel] Letux kernel 4.13 on OpenPandora

H. Nikolaus Schaller hns at goldelico.com
Fri Sep 8 19:33:05 CEST 2017


> Am 08.09.2017 um 19:05 schrieb Vagrant Cascadian <vagrant at debian.org>:
> On 2017-09-08, H. Nikolaus Schaller wrote:
>>> Am 08.09.2017 um 16:49 schrieb Linux-SWAT <openpandora at free.fr>:
>> Well, the official 3.2 kernel is mature and very robust so it is
>> wise to apply the "never touch a running system" rule.
> I had a 3.2 kernel build that mostly worked, based off of the debian
> kernel sources plus some openpandora patches... I used it regularly
> running Debian on the SD card, and then the SD card died.


>> On the other hand a 4.13 kernel has a lot of interesting new features.
>> And there are approx. 9 months left over until there will be no maintainance
>> by official Linux any more:
>> https://www.kernel.org/category/releases.html
> But, like you mention, given the end-of-life for 3.2, I didn't have the
> energy to keep maintaining and old kernel...
>>> And there's a lack of communication about your kernel for OP, I mean
>>> if you or ED or notaz post a pinned thread, it will add a lot of
>>> visibility.
>> I think here on this (kernel related) list there are some OpenPandora
>> owners which would be enough to test a little more and talk about it :)
> I've worked a little on and off again testing the OpenPandora on
> mainline/Debian and with the letux patchsets based on the Debian kernel
> (e.g. a mostly modular config).  I even tried just building the kernel
> with the appropriate letux defconfig, but didn't have much better luck.

Josua did some work and it was possible at some time to build the Letux
kernel using Debian tools. But AFAIR there was some bootstrapping problem
to get the kernel sources.

Anyways we regularily build .deb packages for convenience, although they
do not 100% follow Debian kernel conventions:


> I've also been using mainline u-boot on it... which only works via
> serial console. Also never been able to figure out how to load u-boot
> via SD, so it's a bit nervous updating it...

Well, that isn't difficult. You just need a special boot.scr on the SD




Or if you want to build a new SD card and give a try to our Debian images
as a starting point for further work:

	DEV=/dev/sd-reader ./makesd openpandora


>>> Does it "run" X ?
>> Yes. It can even run PyraOS (aka Debian 9 + extensions).
> I generally was able to get X to work on Debian using the LCD.

Yes, that works for a long time.

>>> What is known to be broken ?
>> Nubs. Sound. I am not sure about Bluetooth and TV-Out.
>> And power management may be weaker.
> From memory, I wasn't able to get working USB, wifi, and battery
> charging (although seemingly arbitrarily sometimes the battery would
> charge).

This works with latest Letux kernels. There had been bugs in the charger
driver. This is the good thing that Pandora and GTA04 share a lot of

> Never tried bluetooth and don't remember about sound.

Sound is missing a codec driver. And for Bluetooth I am also not sure.

> Nubs definitely
> didn't work, and the keyboard FN key didn't work at all, or didn't work
> correctly, and some of the keys were in unexpected places.

Oops. Maybe the key mapping in X was wrong.

> The SD slots worked, and I was able to access the NAND. The serial
> console worked after I wired up a cable for it. Maybe I got USB-OTG
> networking working with g_ether; can't recall for sure.

Yes, works as well.

> Long-term, it might make sense to have a wiki page with a matrix of
> tested and working features on various models, kind of like the
> linux-sunxi folks have:

Well, the Letux project has everything :)


It looks as if it is not 100% up-to date (and does not cover
some regressions).

>  https://linux-sunxi.org/Linux_mainlining_effort#Status_Matrix

Ah, interesting color scheme. Especially to include the Mainlining
status. Maybe we should rework our matrix to include that. Then it
would be obvious what is in mainline, what is in Letux and what is

> In general, it was not working well enough to use with recent kernels,
> so I haven't tested often. I can give it another whirl and summarize the
> working/broken features.

Anyways, this would be fine. Maybe you can just test the Letux kernels
a little on the OpenPandora from time to time?

This would avoid showing bugs introduced by using a different base which
even lags behind linus/master.

One key feature of the Letux project is to tightly follow linus/master
releases. If you base work on some distribution kernel, you get a quite
old base. And some bugs that have been fixed (because we upstream to
kernel.org as well) are still there.

> I'd love to get OpenPandora working with a reasonably recent kernel, so
> if testing a bit can help, happy to test patches, but probably not in a
> position to write them.

BR and thanks,

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