[coreboot] coreboot and embedded controllers, for example OLPC and its OpenEC code

Jordan Crouse jordan.crouse at amd.com
Thu Jun 19 23:17:53 CEST 2008

On 19/06/08 23:07 +0200, Peter Stuge wrote:
> On Thu, Jun 19, 2008 at 03:55:53PM -0500, bari wrote:
> > Jordan Crouse wrote:
> > > When done right, the embedded controller will be transparent to
> > > coreboot.
> How common is that in your experience?

Very common.  But I have to qualify my answer - when I say transparent, 
I don't mean that there might not be special registers implemented
by the embedded controller for that particular platform.

What I mean by "transparent" is that it shouldn't matter to coreboot
if the embedded controller is running OpenEC or a proprietary version.
It should look and feel the same.

> > To develop open firmware for embedded controllers that oem's and
> > odm's will use in new designs in the future?
> > 
> > I understand why someone that enjoys tinkering with laptops and
> > servers might like this. I'm not sure that the odm's and oem's will
> > be interested in an open solution unless it is very stable and very
> > well supported.
> Well there's still the binary blob problem.
> If the EC has it's own firmware then coreboot just needs to know how
> to cooperate with it, but for ones where EC firmware is stored in the
> BIOS flash - there's a bit of a problem with coreboot..

Let us be careful with definitions.  None of these things are problems
with the coreboot code itself, but rather with the management of the
ROM in general.  And yes, we have problems with figuring out ROM
partitioning and management, but we are working on those.

> Granted, those ECs don't seem to be so popular. (yet?)

They will be, sooner then you think. 

Jordan Crouse
Systems Software Development Engineer 
Advanced Micro Devices, Inc.

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