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Porting Linux to IA-64

Stephane Eranian, Hewlett-Packard
David Mosberger, Hewlett-Packard

At HP Labs, we have been working to port Linux to the IA-64 platform since February, 1998, an activity which is now part of a broader industry effort to build a fully optimized Linux distribution for IA-64 for release to the open source community. In this talk we'll present the steps we've taken at HP Labs so far in developing this port and describe some of the lessons learned.

We explain the work we did on porting the GNU toolchain to generate IA-64 code. Then we describe the simulation environment. It should be noted that this is among the first times a full Linux system is being ported before the target hardware is available. This has some interesting problems which we'll also describe.

Then, we explain our work on the kernel and the various milestones we've reached over the last few months: starting from a simple kernel banner printf to getting VM, interrupts, context switch, syscalls,signals, networking, ptrace... We'll also talk about the work at the user level with the port of the GNU C library and others as well as how we're building the standard linux packages. We'll finish with a current status report and also a demo of the kernel booting under the simulator hosted on a laptop running Linux/x86.


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