Re: [PATCH 2/4] of: DT quirks infrastructure

From: Frank Rowand
Date: Thu Feb 19 2015 - 11:48:47 EST

On 2/19/2015 6:29 AM, Pantelis Antoniou wrote:
> Hi Mark,
>> On Feb 18, 2015, at 19:31 , Mark Rutland <mark.rutland@xxxxxxx> wrote:
>>>>> +While this may in theory work, in practice it is very cumbersome
>>>>> +for the following reasons:
>>>>> +
>>>>> +1. The act of selecting a different boot device tree blob requires
>>>>> +a reasonably advanced bootloader with some kind of configuration or
>>>>> +scripting capabilities. Sadly this is not the case many times, the
>>>>> +bootloader is extremely dumb and can only use a single dt blob.
>>>> You can have several bootloader builds, or even a single build with
>>>> something like appended DTB to get an appropriate DTB if the same binary
>>>> will otherwise work across all variants of a board.
>>> No, the same DTB will not work across all the variants of a board.
>> I wasn't on about the DTB. I was on about the loader binary, in the case
>> the FW/bootloader could be common even if the DTB couldn't.
>> To some extent there must be a DTB that will work across all variants
>> (albeit with limited utility) or the quirk approach wouldn't workâ
> Thatâs not correct; the only part of the DTB that needs to be common
> is the model property that would allow the quirk detection logic to fire.
> So, there is a base DTB that will work on all variants, but that only means
> that it will work only up to the point that the quirk detector method
> can work. So while in recommended practice there are common subsets
> of the DTB that might work, they might be unsafe.
> For instance on the beaglebone the regulator configuration is different
> between white and black, it is imperative you get them right otherwise
> you risk board damage.
>>>> So it's not necessarily true that you need a complex bootloader.
>>>>> +2. On many instances boot time is extremely critical; in some cases
>>>>> +there are hard requirements like having working video feeds in under
>>>>> +2 seconds from power-up. This leaves an extremely small time budget for
>>>>> +boot-up, as low as 500ms to kernel entry. The sanest way to get there
>>>>> +is by removing the standard bootloader from the normal boot sequence
>>>>> +altogether by having a very small boot shim that loads the kernel and
>>>>> +immediately jumps to kernel, like falcon-boot mode in u-boot does.
>>>> Given my previous comments above I don't see why this is relevant.
>>>> You're already passing _some_ DTB here, so if you can organise for the
>>>> board to statically provide a sane DTB that's fine, or you can resort to
>>>> appended DTB if it's not possible to update the board configuration.
>>> Youâre missing the point. I canât use the same DTB for each revision of the
>>> board. Each board is similar but itâs not identical.
>> I think you've misunderstood my point. If you program the board with the
>> relevant DTB, or use appended DTB, then you will pass the correct DTB to
>> the kernel without need for quirks.
>> I understand that each variant is somewhat incompatible (and hence needs
>> its own DTB).
> In theory it might work, in practice this does not. Ludovic mentioned that they
> have 27 different DTBs in use at the moment. At a relatively common 60k per DTB
> thatâs 27x60k = 1.6MB of DTBs, that need to be installed.

< snip >

Or you can install the correct DTB on the board. You trust your manufacturing line
to install the correct resistors. You trust your manufacturing line to install the
correct kernel version (eg an updated version to resolve a security issue).

I thought the DT blob was supposed to follow the same standard that other OS's or
bootloaders understood. Are you willing to break that? (This is one of those
ripples I mentioned in my other emails.)

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