New training course: embedded Linux boot time optimization

For many embedded products, the issue of how much time it takes from power-on to the application being fully usable by the end-user is an important challenge. Bootlin has been providing its expertise and experience in this area to its customers for many years through numerous boot time optimization projects, and we have shared this knowledge through a number of talks at several conferences over the past years.

We are now happy to announce that we have a new training course Embedded Linux boot time optimization, open for public registration. This training course was already given to selected Bootlin customers and is now available for everyone.

Embedded Linux boot time optimization

The training course will be lead by Michael Opdenacker, Bootlin’s founder, and author of several publications on the topic of boot time optimization. The course is organized over 4 sessions of 4 hours, with a significant fraction of time spent on practical demonstrations showing on a real-life example the techniques to measure and reduce the boot time of an embedded Linux system.

As usual with Bootlin, the training materials are fully available: Agenda, Slides and Practical lab instructions.

Boot time optimization slide

Our first course open for public registration will take place from April 6th to April 9th, 2021, from 14:00 to 18:00 UTC+2 (Paris time) on each day. The session cost is 519 EUR if you take advantage of the early bird price available until March 9th. Otherwise, the regular rate is 619 EUR. You can register now for this course on Eventbrite.

Also, if you’re interested in organizing a dedicated session for your company, do not hesitate to contact us.

Online training courses in March/April 2021

Our online training courses of January are now all completed, and were again successful. So we’re happy to announce the next dates for our public training courses in March and April, for all our courses: Embedded Linux system development, Linux kernel driver development, Yocto and OpenEmbedded system development, Buildroot system development and Linux graphics stack.

It is worth mentioning that we now have an Early Bird price, which is valid up to 1 month before the course, so register early if you’re interested!

Type Dates Time Duration Cost and registration
Embedded Linux (agenda) Mar. 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 15, 16, 2021
+ extra session on Mar. 17 if needed
14:00 – 18:00 (Paris, UTC+1) 28 h Early: 829 EUR*
Regular: 929 EUR*
Register
Linux kernel (agenda) Mar. 9, 10, 11, 12, 16, 17, 18, 2021 13:30 – 17:30 (Paris time, UTC+1) 28 h Early: 829 EUR*
Regular: 929 EUR*
register
Buildroot (agenda) Mar. 8, 9, 10, 11, 2021 14:00 – 18:00 (Paris time, UTC+1) 16 h Early: 519 EUR*
Regular: 619 EUR*
Register
Yocto Project (agenda) Mar. 22, 23, 24, 25, 2021
+ extra session on Mar 26 if needed
14:00 – 18:00 (Paris time, UTC+1) 16 h Early: 519 EUR*
Regular: 619 EUR*
Register
Linux Graphics (agenda) Apr. 6, 7, 8, 9, 2021 14:00 – 18:00 (Paris time, UTC+2) 16 h Early: 519 EUR*
Regular: 619 EUR*
Register

Free “Device Tree 101” webinar, on February 9, 2021

In partnership with ST, we are organizing on February 9, 2021, a free webinar entitled “Device Tree 101”.

The Device Tree has been adopted for the ARM 32-bit Linux kernel support almost a decade ago, and since then, its usage has expanded to many other CPU architectures in Linux, as well as bootloaders such as U-Boot or Barebox. Even though Device Tree is no longer a new mechanism, developers coming into the embedded Linux world often struggle to understand what Device Trees are, what is their syntax, how they interact with the Linux kernel device drivers, what Device Tree bindings are, and more. This webinar will offer a deep dive into the Device Tree, to jump start new developers in using this description language that is now ubiquitous in the vast majority of embedded Linux projects. This webinar will be illustrated with numerous examples applicable to the STM32MP1 MPU platforms, which make extensive usage of the Device Tree.

This webinar will take place on February 9, 2021, and is proposed at two different times during the day: at 10 AM CET (UTC+1) and 5 PM CET (UTC+1). The duration of the webinar is 1 hours and 30 minutes. Registration is free at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/135964923747. The webinar itself will be hosted as a Youtube Live stream, which will allow participants to ask questions in the chat during the webinar.

Device Tree 101

The trainer for this webinar is Thomas Petazzoni, Bootlin’s CTO. Thomas is the author of the popular « Device Tree for Dummies » talk given in 2014 and which helped numerous embedded Linux developers get started with the Device Tree. Thomas has contributed over 900 patches to the official Linux kernel, mainly around ARM hardware platform support. He is also the co-maintainer of the Buildroot open-source project.

Bootlin at FOSDEM 2021: two talks, member of Embedded program committee

FOSDEM21Like all conferences in these times, FOSDEM will take place as an online, virtual event. For all the FOSDEM regular attendees, it will certainly be a very different experience, and for sure, we will all miss the chocolate, waffles, beer, mussels as well as the rainy, muddy, snowy, foggy and cold weather that characterize Brussels in early February. But nevertheless, knowledge sharing and discussions must go on, and FOSDEM will take place! As usual, FOSDEM takes place the first week-end of February, on February 6-7, and the event is completely free, with no registration required.

This time around, Bootlin is once again contributing to FOSDEM:

Make sure to check out the rest of the Embedded Devroom schedule, as well as the overall FOSDEM schedule.

Bootlin toolchains integration in Buildroot

Since 2017, Bootlin is freely providing ready-to-use pre-built cross-compilation toolchains at https://toolchains.bootlin.com/. We are now providing over 150 toolchains, for a wide range of CPU architectures, covering the glibc, uClibc-ng and musl C libraries, with up-to-date gcc, binutils, gdb and C library support.

We recently contributed an improvement to Buildroot that allows those toolchains to very easily be used in Buildroot configurations: the Bootlin toolchains are now all known by Buildroot as existing external toolchains, next to toolchains from other vendors such as ARM, Synopsys and others.

If you are building a Buildroot system for a CPU architecture variant that has a matching toolchain available from bootlin.toolchains.com, then Bootlin toolchains will naturally show up in the Toolchain sub-menu, when the selected Toolchain type is External toolchain. For example, if the selected CPU architecture is ARM little endian Cortex-A9, with VFP you will see:

Bootlin toolchain selection

Once Bootlin toolchains is selected, a new sub-option Bootlin toolchain variant appears, which allows to choose between the different toolchains applicable to the selected CPU architecture:

Bootlin toolchain choice

This hopefully should make Bootlin toolchains easier to use for Buildroot users.

Internally, this support for Bootlin toolchains in Buildroot is generated and updated using the support/scripts/gen-bootlin-toolchains script. In addition to making the toolchains available to the user, it allows generates some Buildroot test cases for each toolchain, so that each of those configuration is tested by Buildroot continuous integration, see support/testing/tests/toolchain/test_external_bootlin.py.