Mailinglist Archive: opensuse-arm (3 mails)

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RE: [opensuse-arm] timeline?
-----Original Message-----
From: Bill Merriam [mailto:lists@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx]
Sent: Saturday, August 27, 2011 9:58 PM
To: opensuse-arm@xxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: Re: [opensuse-arm] timeline?


I too (and others) have wondered about this. The recently approved
openSUSE strategy said, I think, that mobile devices are not a goal for
openSUSE. You and I know that most mobile devices use ARM processors
but there are a few desktop class devices that do also. More ARM
desktop and server devices are expected in the near future.

Ubuntu has announced that they intend to support ARM servers. They are
current testing using Pandaboards.

In the mean time I believe the openSUSE project's response to your
question is "Thank you for volunteering". That have said a port to ARM
is welcome but they can provide only general assistance.

The Linaro foundation has links to development hardware.

Compulab is offering discounts on their Trimslice desktops is you can
convince them you will use it to port an open source project to ARM.

Marvell has a number of development kits available for purchase. Most
of them are ARM5 processors but the not-yet-available D2plug is an ARM7

As you know the OBS can build ARM packages. openSUSE uses kiwi to turn
those packages in to deploy-able images. I don't think it has been
tested on ARM but it is written in PERL and should be easy to port.

So there you go. Talk your employer into buying a few development kits.
Install another distribution on it. Port kiwi to that and try to build
an openSUSE image for it. In days, weeks, months or years you will
have a working openSUSE distribution.

I am sure you win a t-shirt for that :).

-----Original Message-----

Tnx for the reply Bill,

Yeah, I think I can understand their strategy. For the end-user-market, there
is little love to gain employing a full arm-based distro: few people will be
willing to play with their phone this way.
OTOH, seeing the rising popularity of tablets, we are at the starting point of
a fast rising market share.
And for larger organizations/companies, using those ultra-thin clients, could
be an answer to rising maintenance costs for desktops/laptops. I got people who
are fed-up with picking up their laptop from their locker in the morning, and
putting them back in the evening. A cheap (sub $100) thin-client would be ideal:
-all identical configured
-no hardware maintenance : just replace faulty one's
If (...) SuSE could produce a bootable thinclient, it could promote business
for their remote desktops on SLES.

Regarding hardware, I already got a couple of HP's and Athena boxes.
They were given to my team with a note "see what you can do with them".

Indeed I noticed the presence of ARM packages on the OBS, but I've got no idea
how much is already there.
I mean for a thinclient, you need networking (net-boot), simple X-server and
remote desktopclient. (actually I wonder how the builders ever tested their

As for kiwi, afaicr you can do a cross-build (at least I managed to create a
bootable 32-system, created on a 64-bit build environment). But here also: I
can not determine if everything kiwi needs is there.
Perhaps I should ask Andreas Schaeffer on/or the kiwi-list.

Kind regards, Hans

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