Bootloaders - part 2

Paul Fertser fercerpav at
Tue Jan 5 20:28:08 CET 2010

Torfinn Ingolfsen <tingox at> writes:

> On Thu, Dec 31, 2009 at 1:51 AM, Al Johnson <openmoko at> wrote:
>     I guess Android only needs a forked Qi because it needed different boot
>     parameters, and Qi can't read them from file when booting from NAND.
> It makes me wonder why the missing functionality (ability to read
> parameters from a file o something else in nand) wasn't implemented
> in the main Qi instead of forking it.

It wasn't implemented anywhere. Wasn't implemented in koolu's
fork. Just because flash filesystems like jffs2 and ubifs are not as
simple to read as ext2. Also Qi was designed to primarily provide a
means to boot rootfs from uSD. And be dead simple.

>     I find uboot very easy for multibooting.
> Interesting. Care to tell more about your setup?
> Which distributions are yu multibooting? Android, SHR, QtMoko, Hackable?
> One in NAND and three or four on a sd card?
> If you decide to switch sd card, do you hve to update uboot
> settings?

Come on, u-boot is well-known among embedded devs, there's a u-boot
manual etc. BTW, it doesn't have any problems with big kernels. So if
you want it, you get it. An old u-boot fork still works on
Freerunners. What else do you want? Hack on u-boot to make it more
grub-like? First you'll need to push om-specific parts mainline and
then persuade the u-boot devs that embedded is ready for grub-like
functionality. And then reimplement many of the kernel drivers etc
etc. I don't get you guys. If you want boot menu, go for a simple
framebuffer menu in initramfs. Reliable, debuggable, easy.

Be free, use free ( software!
mailto:fercerpav at

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