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Author Topic: Emulation of TinyCore ARM  (Read 5209 times)

Offline MysticGriffin

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Emulation of TinyCore ARM
« on: May 07, 2016, 01:11:51 AM »
Hi everybody. I'm new here. I'm looking into getting one of the new CHIP computers (getchip.com) and I'm wanting to run TinyCore on it. At this moment, I don't have CHIP so I can not put TinyCore onto it. But I'm trying to familiarize myself with the whole process. What I'd like to do is emulate TinyCore on the ARM architecture, since that's what CHIP uses. However, apparently I'm a complete noob, and can't figure out how to do it on my own  :(

I have looked at PiCore, which is conveniently already set up to run without any extra fuss... but it looks very different from TinyCore, and has stuff already preloaded in to it. The reason I'm looking at TinyCore in the first place is because it doesn't have the extra stuff added in so that I can customize it myself.

So after much toying around, I think I understand that in order to emulate TinyCore ARM, I need to use qemu, with a kernel and an initrd. It seems that the kernel is zImage (http://tinycorelinux.net/dCore/armv7/Allwinner-A20/) but there doesn't seem to be any initrd... Some research led me to http://forum.tinycorelinux.net/index.php?topic=17895.0 but honestly that article confused me more than helping. Perhaps this post should be written on that topic, I'm not sure, so I started a new one. I am currently running Windows 10 as my main OS. I can set up Ubuntu in a VM if necessary, since a lot of the stuff that I'm finding for guidance is linux based anyway. But it seems kind of silly to set up a VM in order to set up a VM, and I don't think I should need to.

If anyone can give me a clear step by step of what I need to do in order to emulate TinyCore ARM, I would really appreciate it.

Offline bmarkus

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Re: Emulation of TinyCore ARM
« Reply #1 on: May 07, 2016, 02:29:37 AM »
piCore doesn't work in QEMU, you need a custom kernel. Even with this QEMU provides only 256k RAM and it is slow even on a fast x86 machine. Such kernel was available in the beginning but not in the last 2-3 years.

I'm referring to piCore. No idea about dCore, Allwinner, etc.




« Last Edit: May 07, 2016, 02:35:12 AM by bmarkus »
Béla
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Offline MysticGriffin

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Re: Emulation of TinyCore ARM
« Reply #2 on: May 07, 2016, 08:44:14 AM »
I'm honestly not sure what the difference is between Raspberry PI and CHIP architecturally. All I know is that they are both ARM. So I'm working on the assumption that if I use the Allwinner-A20 that will work for me. But again, I am lost with the kernel and initrd. The PiCore package I have came with the custom kernel.

Do I have to build a custom kernel? And if so, would I use this same custom kernel when flashing to CHIP? And how exactly do I do that? I was under the impression, perhaps mistakenly that the TinyCore downloads had everything I need. But I'm not understanding it and/or having any luck with it on the emulator.
« Last Edit: May 07, 2016, 08:45:56 AM by MysticGriffin »

Offline curaga

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Re: Emulation of TinyCore ARM
« Reply #3 on: May 07, 2016, 09:31:04 AM »
In the ARM world, you generally need a kernel per device. So a kernel that runs in Qemu does not run on any board, and a kernel for a board will not run on another board. In this sense, you won't gain much by emulating an ARM, as things will be different on your board anyhow. If you want to get familiar with TC, a normal x86 VM works for that (and also a lot faster than ARM, as bmarkus said).
The only barriers that can stop you are the ones you create yourself.

Offline MysticGriffin

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Re: Emulation of TinyCore ARM
« Reply #4 on: May 07, 2016, 07:45:45 PM »
Curaga, I love the name!

So, if kernels are board specific, that means I can't expect to put TC onto my CHIP without having to create a kernel for the board? Am I understanding that right? And also any modules which I put together for TC on x86 will have to be rebuilt once I have TC ported over to CHIP?

How do I go about creating the kernel for CHIP?

Offline bmarkus

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Re: Emulation of TinyCore ARM
« Reply #5 on: May 07, 2016, 08:20:58 PM »

So, if kernels are board specific, that means I can't expect to put TC onto my CHIP without having to create a kernel for the board? Am I understanding that right?


Correct. I have a confirmed order for a board from Dece,ber but still no any info when it is delivered, if ever. I'm skeptic.
Béla
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Offline MysticGriffin

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Re: Emulation of TinyCore ARM
« Reply #6 on: May 08, 2016, 06:19:52 AM »
Correct. I have a confirmed order for a board from Dece,ber but still no any info when it is delivered, if ever. I'm skeptic.

@bmarkus: I have been in contact with them, and they're confident that all the preorders will be shipped in June.

Offline bmarkus

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Re: Emulation of TinyCore ARM
« Reply #7 on: May 09, 2016, 04:25:42 AM »
When I receive the board I will try to port TC.
Béla
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Offline MysticGriffin

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Re: Emulation of TinyCore ARM
« Reply #8 on: May 10, 2016, 02:27:05 AM »
@bmarkus - I look forward to hearing of your success!