Difference between revisions of "SELF"

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(Segment Table: Seesh, who wrote this thing?)
(Description: Corrected speeling grammar and)
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== Description ==
 
== Description ==
Each SELF file is defined as a group of different segments.  Each segment either loads data into memory, zeros a section of memory, or provides information to coreboot or the payload. The segments can be one of the following types:
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Each SELF file is defined as a group of different segments.  Each segment either loads data into memory, zeroes a section of memory, or provides information to coreboot or the payload. The segments can be one of the following types:
  
 
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{| border="1"
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!Description
 
!Description
 
|-
 
|-
| 1 || CODE || This segment has executable code to be copied from the data section to memory (segement data may be compressed)
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| 1 || CODE || This segment has executable code to be copied from the data section to memory (segment data may be compressed)
 
|-
 
|-
| 2 || DATA || This segment has non-executable data to be copied from the data section into memory (sigment data may be compressed)  
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| 2 || DATA || This segment has non-executable data to be copied from the data section into memory (segment data may be compressed)  
 
|-
 
|-
| 3 || BSS || This segment has defines a section of memory to be zeroed.  Noting is copied into memory.
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| 3 || BSS || This segment defines a section of memory to be zeroed.  Nothing is copied into memory.
 
|-
 
|-
| 4 || NAME || This segment contains a descriptive string in the data section that is used by the pyaload loader to identify the current payload.  Noting is copied into memory (segment data must '''not''' be compressed)
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| 4 || NAME || This segment contains a descriptive string in the data section that is used by the payload loader to identify the current payload.  Nothing is copied into memory (segment data must '''not''' be compressed)
 
|-
 
|-
| 5 || NOTES || This segment contains the contents of the .notes section in the data segment.  This is for the use the payload loader. Nothing is copied into memory (segment data must '''not''' be compressed)
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| 5 || NOTES || This segment contains the contents of the .notes section in the data segment.  This is for use by the payload loader. Nothing is copied into memory (segment data must '''not''' be compressed)
 
|-
 
|-
 
| 6 || ENTRY || This segment defines the entry point for execution.  This type signifies the end of the list of segments.  It is mandatory and can only be used once.
 
| 6 || ENTRY || This segment defines the entry point for execution.  This type signifies the end of the list of segments.  It is mandatory and can only be used once.

Revision as of 00:03, 12 April 2008

SELF stands for Simple Executable Loader Format. It is a very simple take on the standard [ELF] executable format. It is proposed that SELF be the the standard format for payload code stored in a LAR file and loaded and executed by coreboot-v3. The bayou chooser will also load and run payloads in the SELF format.

Description

Each SELF file is defined as a group of different segments. Each segment either loads data into memory, zeroes a section of memory, or provides information to coreboot or the payload. The segments can be one of the following types:

ID Segment Description
1 CODE This segment has executable code to be copied from the data section to memory (segment data may be compressed)
2 DATA This segment has non-executable data to be copied from the data section into memory (segment data may be compressed)
3 BSS This segment defines a section of memory to be zeroed. Nothing is copied into memory.
4 NAME This segment contains a descriptive string in the data section that is used by the payload loader to identify the current payload. Nothing is copied into memory (segment data must not be compressed)
5 NOTES This segment contains the contents of the .notes section in the data segment. This is for use by the payload loader. Nothing is copied into memory (segment data must not be compressed)
6 ENTRY This segment defines the entry point for execution. This type signifies the end of the list of segments. It is mandatory and can only be used once.

Format

A SELF file is conprised of two parts: the segment table and the data section. Each is described below.

Segment Table

The segment table is located at the start of the ELF file, with one entry per segement. Each segment is identified by its type (as listed above). The structure of the header entry is as follows:

struct self_header {
    unsigned long type;
    unsigned long offset;
    unsigned long load_addr;
    unsigned long len;
    unsigned long mem_len;
};

All fields are present in each segment entry, though not every field will be valid for every segment type. The following table lists which members are used and what they mean:

Type offset load_addr len mem_len
CODE Offset of the segment in the SELF file address where the code should be copied in memory length of the data in the segment data section length of the data in memory
DATA Offset of the segment in the SELF file address where the code should be copied in memory length of the data in the segment data section length of the data in memory
BSS N/A Start address of the block in memory to be zeroed N/A Length of the block in memory to be zeroed
NAME Offset of the segment in the SELF file N/A length of the data in the segment data section N/A
NOTES Offset of the segment in the SELF file N/A length of the data in the segment data section N/A
ENTRY N/A Address where execution should start N/A N/A

Segment Section

The data section immediately follows the final entry in the segment table. Each block of segment data is written sequentially in this section. CODE and DATA sections may be compressed, NAME and NOTES sections must be uncompressed.

Typical Use

There are two usage models for the SELF. The first is the payload loader that wishes to determine the name of the payload for a graphical chooser. The following is the psuedo code for accomplishing this:

get_name(char *name) {
  ptr = SELF_start;
  struct self_header *header;

  do {
    header = (struct self_header *) ptr;

    if (header->type == SELF_NAME) {
           memcpy(name, SELF_start + header->offset, header->size);
           return 0;
    }
    
    ptr += sizeof(*header);
  } while(header->type != SELF_ENTRY);

  return -1;
}
   

The second usage model is actually loading and running the code - this is accomplished in a stream fashion like so:

decompress_and_run(void) {
  ptr = SELF_start;

  while(1) {
    header = (struct self_header *) ptr;
    switch(header->type) {
       case TYPE_CODE:
       case TYPE_DATA:
           dlen = decompress(SELF_start + header->offset, header->load_addr, header->len);
           memset(header->load_addr + dlen, 0, header->mem_len - dlen);
           break;
       case BSS:
            memset(header->load_addr, 0, header->len);
            break;
       case LOAD:
            return jump_to(header->load_addr);
    }
    
    ptr += sizeof(*header);
  }
}