[OpenBIOS] This list?

Gregory Gerard ggerard at flash.net
Sat Apr 11 23:03:32 CEST 1998

OpenFirmware hurts!  Don't go down this path.  As a former Apple employee 
where OF was law, it causes more problems than it solves.  The Forth 
derivation is baroque and tends to only bring back unmaintainable code 
(you though asm could be bad?!?  You ain't seen nothing yet!)  Also 
talking with Sun people (where OF originally began, though in a slightly 
derivitive and sometime incompatible language known as OpenBoot) who code 
it on regular basis, they hate the horribly restrictive environment and 
the debugging facilities suck wind, but they are stuck with it.

Being able to initialize an OF card is okay, but doing a full OF 
implementation on the host ROM side is a nightmare.


>On Sat, 11 Apr 1998, David Freeman wrote:
>> Wouldn't that be an OpenFirmware clone?  I know that most modern PPC
>> systems now use OpenFirmware, as well as newer SPARC systems.  An
>> OpenFirmware clone would be cool...
>This isn't exactly what I thought of at first, but it sounds like the best
>thing to do now that I think about it. This would probably help out some
>people trying to run LinuxPPC on Winbloze-NT only Motorola PowerStack
>machines (You can flash a new bios onto them from a floppy, I believe)
>Maybe we can even add some cool features like control from an ethernet
>interface.. Have it look for a bootp server at boot, and then allow telnet
>configuration.. This would be *great* for setting up a cluster.. Take the
>machine out of the box, hook it up, and configure it without ever hooking
>up a monitor, keyboard, or inserting a floppy. There are some security
>issues with this though, but I think those can be dealt with.
>Something like my previous idea is possible with a fully open-source
>firware code.. What company would want to bother with something like that
>anyway? I personally think it would be very useful.
>> And it isn't exactly proprietary either, independent companies make
>> their own implementations of OpenFirmware, so I guess it would be
>> possible to get the specs, and write clone, eh?
>> Troy Benjegerdes wrote:
>> > 
>> > Does this list exist at all? I haven't seen any activity for about 2 weeks
>> > or something.
>> > 
>> > Anyway, would anyone like to develop a GNU bios for PPC systems? I *might*
>> > be in a position to get all the needed specifications and actually get the
>> > developed *used* when it is stable.
>| Troy Benjegerdes    |    troybenj at iastate.edu    |    hozer at dodds.net    |
>|    Unix is user friendly... You just have to be friendly to it first.    |
>| This message composed with 100% free software.     http://www.linux.org  |
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