[OpenBIOS] Program state and elf/linux/a.out/Fcode loaders

Mark Cave-Ayland mark.cave-ayland at siriusit.co.uk
Sun Mar 14 22:50:01 CET 2010

Hi everyone,

Having spent a lot of time learning about how OpenBIOS is organised this 
weekend, it seems quite obvious that the ELF, Linux, a.out and Fcode 
loaders currently duplicated for each architecture really should live in 

A quick diff of the loader code in each of the arch/* directories shows 
that there are only trivial differences between each version, and so it 
would make a lot of sense to have just one copy of the loader code and 
then use headers and/or callbacks to make the loader code work across 
all architectures.

This also ties in with some of the work I've been doing for SPARC64 in 
that in order to implement the "go" word, we need to reorganise the boot 
word and hence implement the "program state" concept from the OF 
documentation. If all of the loaders are in one place then this 
shouldn't be too complicated a fix.

Can anyone think of a reason why we wouldn't want to move the loaders 
into libopenbios? And also, how I would I be able to get hold of the 
various types of file (ELF, Linux, a.out) for each platform in order 
verify that I hadn't made a mistake in the merge?



Mark Cave-Ayland - Senior Technical Architect
PostgreSQL - PostGIS
Sirius Corporation plc - control through freedom
t: +44 870 608 0063

Sirius Labs: http://www.siriusit.co.uk/labs

More information about the OpenBIOS mailing list