[coreboot] r3406 - trunk/util/flashrom

Peter Stuge peter at stuge.se
Wed Jul 2 18:39:33 CEST 2008

On Wed, Jul 02, 2008 at 06:14:39PM +0200, Stefan Reinauer wrote:
> >On looking closer, all drivers do this. Erase before write. I
> >don't think that is right?
> I think a write of a given block should always automatically erase
> that very block first, but not more.

I disagree.

> There should not be a situation where the user has to know that she
> can only write the flash after she set all the bits to 1 by erasing
> it.

This stands in contrast with the layout and (current) -s/-e options.

If I tell flashrom to only write to a six-byte area in the chip - I
sure do not want the eraseblock to be erased.

> That's hardware knowledge that the tool must have, not the user.

I disagree. This is a major characteristic of flash technology and I
don't think we should be hiding it.

Look at the GALEP software for comparison. They have a check box for
enabling/disabling automatic erase on chip program. Their software
does not sport the same layout/-s/-e features as flashrom does, they
only deal with full chip operations, yet IIRC they still have
erase-before-write disabled by default.

> (Otherwise she would use dd for the task)

Not really true, because the write sequence is still annoying to do
by hand.

> But I agree the way we do deleting + writing is ugly.
> granularity

Not good enough I think. I do not want flashrom to ever erase flash
cells that the user did not explicitly request.

> >>>Better make -Ewv work then, and apply the swapopts patch for -ewv. :)
> >>>      
> >>and -ezytgrl !
> >
> >Hm? :)
> That's what I thought, too, when I read that line. What's Ewv, ewv
> and why is swapopts involved in automatically erasing flash chips?

-E currently does erase, -w write and -v verify.

When running flashrom with -E, it will exit() after the erase is
finished, and so -Ewv does not work.

Because all flash drivers (incorrectly IMO) erase before write, -Ewv
is not needed, but since I want to change that, I also have to let
flashrom do -Ewv in one go.

Swapopts is involved, because I would like to change -E into -e, to
have lowercase options for all common commands.

> >I have been contemplating adding -T to run a full test cycle
> Something that prints out TEST_OK_PREW or the human understandable
> version of that in the end? I love this idea.


> -T should print a big warning "You are going to destroy the data on
> this chip if you run the command again with -f"

Yep, that's what I had in mind too.

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