Bootlin engineer Alexandre Belloni co-maintainer of Linux Atmel processor support

Atmel SAMA5After becoming the co-maintainer of the Linux RTC subsystem, Bootlin engineer Alexandre Belloni also recently became a co-maintainer for the support of Atmel ARM processors in the Linux kernel.

Bootlin has been working since early 2014 with Atmel to improve support for their processors in the mainline kernel. Since this date, our work has mainly consisted in:

  • Modernizing existing code for Atmel processors: complete the switch to the Device Tree and the common clock framework for all platforms, rework all that was needed to make Atmel processor support compatible with the ARM multiplatform kernel, and do a lot of related driver and platform refactoring.
  • Implement a complete DRM/KMS driver for the display subsystem of the most recent Atmel processors.
  • Upstream support for the Atmel SAMA5D4, the latest Cortex-A5 based SoC from Atmel.

Thanks to this long-term involvement from Alexandre Belloni and Boris Brezillon, Alexandre was appointed as a co-maintainer of Atmel support, replacing Andrew Victor who hasn’t been active in kernel development since quite some time. He is joining Nicolas Ferre and Jean-Christophe Plagniol-Villard in the team of maintainers for the Atmel platform.

Alexandre has sent his first pull request as an Atmel co-maintainer on May 22, sending 9 patches to the ARM SoC maintainers, planned for the 4.2 kernel release. His pull request was quickly merged by ARM SoC maintainer Arnd Bergmann.

Bootlin is proud to have one of its engineers as the maintainer of one very popular embedded Linux platform, which has had since many years a strong commitment of upstream Linux kernel support. Alexandre is the third Bootlin engineer to become an ARM platform maintainer: Maxime Ripard is the maintainer of Allwinner ARM processor support, and Gregory Clement is the co-maintainer of Marvell EBU ARM processor support.

Embedded Linux Projects Using Yocto Project Cookbook

Embedded Linux Projects Using Yocto Project Cookbook Cover

We were kindly provided a copy of Embedded Linux Projects Using Yocto Project Cookbook, written by Alex González. It is available at Packt Publishing, either in an electronic format (DRM free) or printed.

It is written as a cookbook so it is a set of recipes that you can refer to and solve your immediate problems instead of reading it from cover to cover. While, as indicated by the title, the main topic is embedded development using Yocto Project, the book also includes generic embedded Linux tips, like debugging the kernel with ftrace or debugging a device tree from U-Boot.

The chapters cover the following topics:

  • The Build System: an introduction to Yocto Project.
  • The BSP Layer: how to build and customize the bootloader and the Linux kernel, plenty of tips on how to debug kernel related issues.
  • The Software layer: covers adding a package and its configuration, selecting the initialization manager and making a release while complying with the various licenses.
  • Application development: using the SDK, various IDEs (Eclipse, Qt creator), build systems (make, CMake, SCons).
  • Debugging, Tracing and Profiling: great examples and tips for the usage of gdb, strace, perf, systemtap, OProfile, LTTng and blktrace.

The structure of the book makes it is easy to find the answers you are looking for and also explains the underlying concepts of the solution. It is definitively of good value once you start using Yocto Project.

Bootlin is also offering a Yocto Project and OpenEmbedded training course (detailed agenda) to help you start with your projects. If you’re interested, join one of the upcoming public training sessions, or order a session at your location!

Bootlin registered as Yocto Project Participant.

Earlier this month, Bootlin applied and was elected Yocto Project Participant by the Yocto Project Advisory Board. This badge is awarded to people and companies actively participating to the Yocto Project and promoting it.

We have mainly contributed to the meta-fsl-arm and meta-fsl-arm-extra layers but we also have some contributions in OpenEmbedded Core and in the meta-ti layer.

Bootlin offers a Yocto Project and OpenEmbedded training course that we can deliver at your location, or that you can attend by joining one of our public sessions. Our engineers are also available to provide consulting and development services around the Yocto Project, to help you use this tool for your embedded Linux projects. Do not hesitate to contact us!

ELCE 2012 slides: porting Linux to new ARM SoC

We are just returning from Barcelona, Spain, after participating to the 2012 edition of the Embedded Linux Conference Europe. My colleague Thomas Petazzoni has delivered the below presentation:

Your New ARM SoC Linux Support Check-List

Since Linus Torvalds raised warnings about the state of the ARM architecture support in the Linux kernel, a huge amount of effort and reorganization has happened in the way Linux supports ARM SoCs. From the addition of the device tree to the pinctrl subsystem, from the new clock framework to the new rules in code organization and design, the changes have been significant over the last one and half year in theARM Linux kernel world.

Based on the speaker’s experience on getting the new Marvell Armada 370 and Armada XP SoC supported in the mainline Linux kernel, we will give an overview of those changes and summarize the new rules for ARM Linux support. We aim at helping developers willing to add suppot for new ARM SoCs in the Linux kernel by providing a check-list of things to do.

Thomas Petazzoni is an embedded Linux engineer and trainer at Bootlin since 2008. He has been involved with multiple projects around the Linux kernel, especially the mainlining of Marvell Armada 370/XP SoCs support. He is also a major contributor to the Buildroot embedded Linux build system with more than 1100 patches merged.

The presentation slides and their sources are now available here. We have also shot a video of Thomas’ talk and it should be available in the next weeks. Stay tuned!

Do not hesitate to contact us if you are looking for engineers to port Linux to new hardware.

Buildroot Developer Day, Brussels edition

BuildrootAround each FOSDEM conference and Embedded Linux Conference Europe event, we have been organizing a Buildroot Developer Day for a few years, in order to gather some developers and users of the Buildroot build system, in order to discuss the development of Buildroot, its features, development process, design, and more.

In Prague at the last Embedded Linux Conference Europe in October 2011, we had a very interesting meeting that gathered developers from other build systems (OE-lite, OpenBricks and PXTdist), and we published a report of this meeting.

The next Buildroot Developer Day will take place on Friday, 3rd February, just before the FOSDEM conference, in Brussels. This is the first meeting that will gather such a number of Buildroot developers: Peter Korsgaard (Buildroot maintainer), Arnout Vandecapelle (developer from Essensium/Mind, who has been contributing a lot to Buildroot lately), Thomas De Schampheleire (also a big contributor in the last year or so), Luca Ceresoli, Yann E. Morin (developer of Crosstool-NG), my colleague Maxime Ripard (who contributed package enhancements and improvements of the package infrastructure) and myself.

This meeting is open to all Buildroot developers and users, and will take place in a location easily accessible in the center of Brussels. Do not hesitate to contact me at if you want to take part to this meeting.