Differences between revisions 18 and 19
Revision 18 as of 2006-04-23 03:14:09
Size: 4490
Editor: wookey
Revision 19 as of 2006-05-17 18:15:01
Size: 4514
Editor: HectorOron
Comment: added category emdebian
Deletions are marked like this. Additions are marked like this.
Line 96: Line 96:

Adapted Debian tools so you can build/cross-compile DebianPackage s or adapted packages with info on how to cross-build and build smaller packages.

Emdebian is experimenting with different approaches to cross-building and small-system-friendly packages in order to produce sustainable and robust long-term solutions. For cross-building there are two main approaches: ["Scratchbox"], which allows cross-builds to appear to be native to the apps being built, and dpkg-cross which allows conventional cross-builds to occur in a Debian-compatible way. [ SLIND | EmdebianSlind ] is a distribution built using dpkg-cross, and STAGE is built using scratchbox.

For package meta-data making packages more suitable for shrinking, two approaches are currently being investigated. The STAG approach uses a $(DEBIAN_DIR) directory to overlay changed info from the /debian directory, and is used by STAGE. The udeb approach of Debian-installer gives a tighter integration with Debian, with embedded packages having changed names so they can exist in the debian package namespace. Both mechanisms have pros and cons which are discussed in EmdebianMetaData.

Project Website


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)


Cross Toolchains

Emdebian builds cross-toolchains for use on standard Debian development machines. Currently tools for i386 to arm, powerpc, mips, mipsel and m68k are built for stable, testing and unstable.

Add whichever of these lines your need to your /etc/apt/sources.list:

 deb http://www.emdebian.org/emdebian-tools/stable ./
 deb http://www.emdebian.org/emdebian-tools/testing ./
deb http://www.emdebian.org/emdebian-tools/unstable ./

The "testing" and "unstable" distributions should be considered experimental at this time, and are currently poorly synced with Debian mainstream, so you may have to force things a bit. A system to keep the testing and unstable versions in sync with Debian-proper is being set up.

To install the full toolchain (binutils, gcc, cpp, glibc), for e.g. ARM do:

 aptitude update
 aptitude install gcc-3.4-arm-linux

You will also need the development libraries (which will be brought in automatically if you auto-install Recommends:):

 aptitude install libc6-dev-arm-cross

You can alternatively install gcc-3.3-arm-linux, or for arches where it all builds, gcc-4.0-arm-linux


EmdebianPackagingGuidelines is a document explaining to package maintainers the sorts of things they should be aware of in their packaging to make their packages 'Embedded-friendly'. This includes cross-building and small-system-building.


  • http://lists.debian.org/debian-embedded/2005/11/msg00014.html

    • Current state of affairs.
  • bring Ed's framework upto date with Etch.
  • create configurations for various devices and document howto do it
  • promote DEBUILD_OPTIONS=nodocs flag for not building docs
  • promote DEBUILD_OPTIONS=notest for skipping tests
  • co-operate with i386-uclibc team and embedded arch porters
  • Kill scratchbox in it's current form and make a better scratchbox2
  • Settle and stick in to one of: familiar/ipkg, emdebian or udebs

Set-up a buildd inside scratchbox (which should be possible as I heard that it has already been done) to start building more packages. (This will hopefully be possible when the emdebian server is back up). (Once I find out how to silence my proliant server I might hook it up to my internet line and provide a secondary build env)

Document setting up the buildd so ["people"]/ ["dev"]s can try it out for themselves.

Integrate ["uclibc"] in the story. This will definitely give some size boost toward smaller footprint to the packages.

Once we have proven that this works start pushing things into Debian proper.

Optional :

  • Make sure everything works with the successors of scratchbox
  • Check the ARM build of Ubuntu

Well I hope I can open a fruitfull discussion with this and hope to see some more people starting to work on this.

See also: BootUsb , DebianRobot , EmDebian/DeBootstrap , EmDebian/CrossDebootstrap .

Work Sessions

February 25&26th [http://wiki.debian.org/EmDebian/Fosdem2006 Fosdem2006]

April 12-16 DebianEmbeddedWorkSessionExtremadura2006

May 14th - May 21st DebConf6EmdebianStuff