[coreboot] Now Proposal for cross-compiler Re: Simnow & payloads (Was: something else)

Segher Boessenkool segher at kernel.crashing.org
Fri May 16 18:53:39 CEST 2008

> I feel very strongly that this should not be mandatory.  I appreciate
> the trouble you have had, but I think that adding a mandatory 
> cross-compile
> toolchain is too high a barrier for entry for novice buildrom users.

It's also wholly unnecessary.  The only thing it would do is replace
some build machinery that detects what specific toolchain commands to
use with build machinery that detects how to build a specific toolchain.

> I have always believed, and I will always believe that the reason that
> any given toolchain doesn't work out of the box is the fault of the 
> software
> you are compiling and not the fault of the toolchain.

Strongly agreed, with the caveat that the toolchain *can* have bugs --
but it's childish to start blaming the toolchain until you have proof
it's doing something wrong.  Much more often it's pilot error.

> The moment we start
> to turn a blind eye to our own faults and start blaming toolchains, 
> then we
> have started down a slippery slope.  Eventually, coreboot and buildrom 
> and
> the payloads will only be compilable with a special toolchain that is 
> six
> years old and we'll be content to sit around and blame it all on the 
> compiler
> team.

Hey, coreboot runs into a broken linker more often than into a broken
compiler, even ;-)

> That all said, I would be perfectly happy to let the user specify a
> local toolchain to compile buildrom, as long as that behavior is 
> configurable
> and the default remains to use the system toolchain.

The default should be to try to find some toolchain if nothing was
specified, sure.  A few lines of script for a lot of user-friendliness.

> I'm sure that your
> experience with crosstools will be good for a wiki page describing the
> care and feeding of a cross-compile toolchain and how to use it with
> buildrom.  I look forward to seeing that.


> But I beg you, please give us as much information as you have about 
> your
> failures so that we can try to fix them in the code.  And everybody 
> else,
> we need to stop throwing our hands up when we encounter toolchain 
> issues -
> we need to understand them and why there is a much better then average
> chance that it is our code that is to blame.

Better than 95% chance?  :-)


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