[Lazarus] FPC and Lazarus on ARM

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[Lazarus] FPC and Lazarus on ARM

Tobias Giesen
Hello,

I now have a netbook computer with an ARM processor running Ubuntu.
Ideally I would like to install FPC and Lazarus on it and do native
ARM development. I wonder if it might be possible. Can I cross-compile
FPC to get a native FPC running on ARM?

Or at least can I cross-compile my app?

The target will be ARM-Ubuntu, not ARM-WinCE ;=)

Cheers,
Tobias



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Re: [Lazarus] FPC and Lazarus on ARM

Kjow
2011/3/23 Tobias Giesen <[hidden email]>:
> Or at least can I cross-compile my app?
>
> The target will be ARM-Ubuntu, not ARM-WinCE ;=)

http://wiki.lazarus.freepascal.org/Setup_Cross_Compile_For_ARM

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Re: [Lazarus] FPC and Lazarus on ARM

Mark Morgan Lloyd
In reply to this post by Tobias Giesen
Tobias Giesen wrote:

> Hello,
>
> I now have a netbook computer with an ARM processor running Ubuntu.
> Ideally I would like to install FPC and Lazarus on it and do native
> ARM development. I wonder if it might be possible. Can I cross-compile
> FPC to get a native FPC running on ARM?
>
> Or at least can I cross-compile my app?
>
> The target will be ARM-Ubuntu, not ARM-WinCE ;=)

I run both FPC and Lazarus natively on ARM. The major issue is ensuring
that enough memory is available- a Lazarus build wants about 512Mb
during link. I've got a couple of issues with the Lazarus IDE that I
need to get to the stage where I can raise bug reports but lazbuild
works fine.

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Re: [Lazarus] FPC and Lazarus on ARM

Michael Schnell
On 03/24/2011 08:55 AM, Mark Morgan Lloyd wrote:
> I run both FPC and Lazarus natively on ARM.
There is a Wiki page about cross compiling. It would be great to have a
wiki page on how to set up a native FPC environment on ARM/Linux.

-Michael

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Re: [Lazarus] FPC and Lazarus on ARM

Mark Morgan Lloyd
Michael Schnell wrote:
> On 03/24/2011 08:55 AM, Mark Morgan Lloyd wrote:
>> I run both FPC and Lazarus natively on ARM.
> There is a Wiki page about cross compiling. It would be great to have a
> wiki page on how to set up a native FPC environment on ARM/Linux.

e.g. an "ARM-based development systems" page referenced at
http://wiki.lazarus.freepascal.org/Platform_list#Supported_targets_for_ARM

I'd be happy to contribute what I know, but in short the major issue is
getting a distro running on the available hardware. And, it must be
said, keeping it running: I've seen tales of woe from Sheevaplug users
who've ended up with corrupt or bricked systems.

In my case I'm using NSLU2 "Slugs", which are supported by a variant of
Debian- once running they can use the standard Debian package
repositories. I've made some recent progress towards getting something
running on some "PC-like" ARM development boards I've got, but I won't
have those up for a few weeks due to other demands on my time.

--
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markMLl .AT. telemetry.co .DOT. uk

[Opinions above are the author's, not those of his employers or colleagues]

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Re: [Lazarus] FPC and Lazarus on ARM

Michael Schnell
On 03/24/2011 10:37 AM, Mark Morgan Lloyd wrote:
>
> e.g. an "ARM-based development systems" page referenced at
> http://wiki.lazarus.freepascal.org/Platform_list#Supported_targets_for_ARM
leading to http://wiki.lazarus.freepascal.org/Linux_for_ARM
which in fact leads to
http://wiki.lazarus.freepascal.org/Compile_and_Develop_on_Maemo_device

which really shows how to get Lazarus working on an Arm-Linux device.

I have no idea what is special about Maemo that might not apply to other
Arm-Linux environments, so a more general  description could help in
many cases.

>
> In my case I'm using NSLU2 "Slugs", which are supported by a variant
> of Debian- once running they can use the standard Debian package
> repositories. I've made some recent progress towards getting something
> running on some "PC-like" ARM development boards I've got, but I won't
> have those up for a few weeks due to other demands on my time.
>
:-) :-) I, too have an old slug at home and did load debian on same. I
fear it is quite low on memory for complex userland stuff.

Completely Off-Topic: (please answer in a private mail):
As I have your attention: I want do use the slug either as a ISCSI
server or as an NFS server to provide a remote (backup)  USB-disks to my
(Suse) Linux File server. In case of NFS it would need to support
"device mapper", as the disks are managed in volume groups.

What do you think ?

Thanks,
-Michael


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Re: [Lazarus] FPC and Lazarus on ARM

Kjow
2011/3/24 Michael Schnell <[hidden email]>:
> http://wiki.lazarus.freepascal.org/Compile_and_Develop_on_Maemo_device
>
> which really shows how to get Lazarus working on an Arm-Linux device.
>
> I have no idea what is special about Maemo that might not apply to other
> Arm-Linux environments, so a more general  description could help in many
> cases.

Maemo/MeeGo are arm-linux distro, maemo is based on debian meego on
fedora. So I think that the wiki could be used to installa fpc/lazarus
on any arm-linux platform. :)

Kjow

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Re: [Lazarus] FPC and Lazarus on ARM

Michael Schnell

>   So I think that the wiki could be used to installa fpc/lazarus
> on any arm-linux platform. :)
Sounds great. So maybe Mark could do  some testing and enhance the text
to be more general.

-Michael

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Re: [Lazarus] FPC and Lazarus on ARM

Mark Morgan Lloyd
In reply to this post by Michael Schnell
Michael Schnell wrote:

> On 03/24/2011 10:37 AM, Mark Morgan Lloyd wrote:
>>
>> e.g. an "ARM-based development systems" page referenced at
>> http://wiki.lazarus.freepascal.org/Platform_list#Supported_targets_for_ARM 
>>
> leading to http://wiki.lazarus.freepascal.org/Linux_for_ARM
> which in fact leads to
> http://wiki.lazarus.freepascal.org/Compile_and_Develop_on_Maemo_device
>
> which really shows how to get Lazarus working on an Arm-Linux device.
>
> I have no idea what is special about Maemo that might not apply to other
> Arm-Linux environments, so a more general  description could help in
> many cases.

I'll try and read through that but I was thinking of something at the
top level which emphasised that it was running on something behaving as
"a computer" rather than "an appliance" or "something requiring
cross-development".

>> In my case I'm using NSLU2 "Slugs", which are supported by a variant
>> of Debian- once running they can use the standard Debian package
>> repositories. I've made some recent progress towards getting something
>> running on some "PC-like" ARM development boards I've got, but I won't
>> have those up for a few weeks due to other demands on my time.
>>
> :-) :-) I, too have an old slug at home and did load debian on same. I
> fear it is quite low on memory for complex userland stuff.
>
> Completely Off-Topic: (please answer in a private mail):
> As I have your attention: I want do use the slug either as a ISCSI
> server or as an NFS server to provide a remote (backup)  USB-disks to my
> (Suse) Linux File server. In case of NFS it would need to support
> "device mapper", as the disks are managed in volume groups.
>
> What do you think ?

Well, provided that we don't get into "distro wars" I'm sure limited
comment here is acceptable to the list owners since such a thing could
also be used for local SVN and so on. I can't speak for the device
mapper but I've had no problem at all with NFS on a Slug running Debian
"Lenny"- just install nfs-kernel-server and set up /etc/export.

I think that the one thing I'd caution is that NFS is poor at handling
symlinks, and I'm not sure where it stands on locking. If you have a
server setup that uses symlinks or a client app that requires locking
then it might be safer to consider other options [waves hands in air]
should they exist.

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[Opinions above are the author's, not those of his employers or colleagues]

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Re: [Lazarus] FPC and Lazarus on ARM

Mark Morgan Lloyd
In reply to this post by Michael Schnell
Michael Schnell wrote:
>>   So I think that the wiki could be used to installa fpc/lazarus
>> on any arm-linux platform. :)
> Sounds great. So maybe Mark could do  some testing and enhance the text
> to be more general.

I'll see what I can do, but it might be better if I started off by
transcribing my notes into a new page which could then be reconciled.

I had a lot of difficulty at the time that Debian was forcing a
transition from ABI to EABI. I think it was Jonas who pointed me at a
binary that got me out of some of the problems, but I'm very quick to
admit that I don't really know my way around the various non-production
versions.

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Re: [Lazarus] FPC and Lazarus on ARM

Michael Schnell
In reply to this post by Mark Morgan Lloyd
On 03/24/2011 02:22 PM, Mark Morgan Lloyd wrote:
>
> I think that the one thing I'd caution is that NFS is poor at handling
> symlinks, and I'm not sure where it stands on locking. If you have a
> server setup that uses symlinks or a client app that requires locking
> then it might be safer to consider other options [waves hands in air]
> should they exist.
My intention is to install it as a remote backup device using "Dirvish",
just moving the now local USB disk box to a remote location on the
Ethernet. So my first preference used to be ISCSI, as the Server PC now
still just sees some "local" disks below the device manager layer. But
NFS should work as well (providing a single disk above the device
manager layer), as I _thought_ NFS would easily support hard links (this
is what Dirvish heavily relies on) and symlinks (Dirvish backups the
symlinks as they are, not following them).

In fact I have no experience at all with any of ISCSI, NFS and Debian,
so I did not dare to start the migration yet.

Thanks,
-Michael


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Re: [Lazarus] FPC and Lazarus on ARM

Den Jean
In reply to this post by Kjow
On Thursday 24 March 2011 12:58:40 Kjow wrote:
> Maemo/MeeGo are arm-linux distro, maemo is based on debian meego on
> fedora. So I think that the wiki could be used to installa fpc/lazarus
> on any arm-linux platform. :)

This one also contains arm platform instructions
http://wiki.freepascal.org/Qt4_Maemo_Binding
|

I did not try the following, but perhaps interesting
http://vserver.rosseaux.net/tutorials/fpcn900.php
http://wiki.maemo.org/Compile_FreePascal_on_device
http://wiki.freepascal.org/Compile_and_Develop_on_Maemo_device


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Re: [Lazarus] FPC and Lazarus on ARM

Marco van de Voort
In reply to this post by Mark Morgan Lloyd
On Thu, Mar 24, 2011 at 09:37:52AM +0000, Mark Morgan Lloyd wrote:

> > wiki page on how to set up a native FPC environment on ARM/Linux.
>
> e.g. an "ARM-based development systems" page referenced at
> http://wiki.lazarus.freepascal.org/Platform_list#Supported_targets_for_ARM
>
> I'd be happy to contribute what I know, but in short the major issue is
> getting a distro running on the available hardware. And, it must be
> said, keeping it running: I've seen tales of woe from Sheevaplug users
> who've ended up with corrupt or bricked systems.
>
> In my case I'm using NSLU2 "Slugs", which are supported by a variant of
> Debian- once running they can use the standard Debian package
> repositories. I've made some recent progress towards getting something
> running on some "PC-like" ARM development boards I've got, but I won't
> have those up for a few weeks due to other demands on my time.

Some other interesting devices (all Marvell kirkwood based):

- WD GOflex.NET: 128MB but two 2.5" sata ports. First attempt at rooting it
  failed, and I am waiting for a jtag cable
- IOMega IConnect - 256 MB.

Besides that I have GlobalScale reference equipment, SheevaPlug (512MB) and
since about a month an OpenRD.

The latter is particularly interesting since it is effectively a desktop
(sata + lots of USB + VGA). I'm planning to install the just new Fedora 13
and need to set up a crosscompile kernel.

Still, I wouldn't advise bying the kirkwood based reference stuff. Quite
expensive (specially when ordered from Europe), and the panda board with its
dual core and armv7 is more interesting. (but I'm told that the DVI from the
Beagle/Panda is digital only)


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Re: [Lazarus] FPC and Lazarus on ARM

Mark Morgan Lloyd
Marco van de Voort wrote:

> On Thu, Mar 24, 2011 at 09:37:52AM +0000, Mark Morgan Lloyd wrote:
>>> wiki page on how to set up a native FPC environment on ARM/Linux.
>> e.g. an "ARM-based development systems" page referenced at
>> http://wiki.lazarus.freepascal.org/Platform_list#Supported_targets_for_ARM
>>
>> I'd be happy to contribute what I know, but in short the major issue is
>> getting a distro running on the available hardware. And, it must be
>> said, keeping it running: I've seen tales of woe from Sheevaplug users
>> who've ended up with corrupt or bricked systems.
>>
>> In my case I'm using NSLU2 "Slugs", which are supported by a variant of
>> Debian- once running they can use the standard Debian package
>> repositories. I've made some recent progress towards getting something
>> running on some "PC-like" ARM development boards I've got, but I won't
>> have those up for a few weeks due to other demands on my time.
>
> Some other interesting devices (all Marvell kirkwood based):
>
> - WD GOflex.NET: 128MB but two 2.5" sata ports. First attempt at rooting it
>   failed, and I am waiting for a jtag cable
> - IOMega IConnect - 256 MB.
>
> Besides that I have GlobalScale reference equipment, SheevaPlug (512MB) and
> since about a month an OpenRD.
>
> The latter is particularly interesting since it is effectively a desktop
> (sata + lots of USB + VGA). I'm planning to install the just new Fedora 13
> and need to set up a crosscompile kernel.
>
> Still, I wouldn't advise bying the kirkwood based reference stuff. Quite
> expensive (specially when ordered from Europe), and the panda board with its
> dual core and armv7 is more interesting. (but I'm told that the DVI from the
> Beagle/Panda is digital only)

That OpenRD Ultimate looks interesting. I've got a small number of
development boards with most of that (no video) but they're unusual in
that they've got PC-style BIOSes and boot CE from a partitioned
CompactFlash. I'm hoping to be able to put Open Firmware on the CF which
will make it look very much like the Sun etc. systems I'm used to and
will save messing around with internal firmware, and from there I should
be able to boot Linux from USB.

At this point I need to come clean: I'm aware of one and possibly two
bugs that affect the Lazarus IDE on both ARM and SPARC: basically, an
exception when switching projects and when closing the IDE. It doesn't
happen on x86 and PPC, which suggests to me that it could be an
alignment issue. I was hoping to get more familiar with the innards of
FPC and Lazarus (not to mention Mantis etc.) before reporting this,
meanwhile lazbuild works fine as do generated apps.

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Re: [Lazarus] FPC and Lazarus on ARM

Henry Vermaak
In reply to this post by Marco van de Voort
On 25 March 2011 08:09, Marco van de Voort <[hidden email]> wrote:

> On Thu, Mar 24, 2011 at 09:37:52AM +0000, Mark Morgan Lloyd wrote:
>> > wiki page on how to set up a native FPC environment on ARM/Linux.
>>
>> e.g. an "ARM-based development systems" page referenced at
>> http://wiki.lazarus.freepascal.org/Platform_list#Supported_targets_for_ARM
>>
>> I'd be happy to contribute what I know, but in short the major issue is
>> getting a distro running on the available hardware. And, it must be
>> said, keeping it running: I've seen tales of woe from Sheevaplug users
>> who've ended up with corrupt or bricked systems.
>>
>> In my case I'm using NSLU2 "Slugs", which are supported by a variant of
>> Debian- once running they can use the standard Debian package
>> repositories. I've made some recent progress towards getting something
>> running on some "PC-like" ARM development boards I've got, but I won't
>> have those up for a few weeks due to other demands on my time.
>
> Some other interesting devices (all Marvell kirkwood based):
>
> - WD GOflex.NET: 128MB but two 2.5" sata ports. First attempt at rooting it
>  failed, and I am waiting for a jtag cable
> - IOMega IConnect - 256 MB.
>
> Besides that I have GlobalScale reference equipment, SheevaPlug (512MB) and
> since about a month an OpenRD.
>
> The latter is particularly interesting since it is effectively a desktop
> (sata + lots of USB + VGA). I'm planning to install the just new Fedora 13
> and need to set up a crosscompile kernel.

I've been thinking about getting one of these:

http://www.genesi-usa.com/products/efika

I need something small and quiet to drive my projector and with the
new debian armhf port, the performance could be quite nice, too.
Cortex A8 seems like the thing to go for now, with linaro and debian
focusing on armv7 + vfp3 mainly.

Henry

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Re: [Lazarus] FPC and Lazarus on ARM

Mark Morgan Lloyd
In reply to this post by Mark Morgan Lloyd
Mark Morgan Lloyd wrote:

> Michael Schnell wrote:
>>>   So I think that the wiki could be used to installa fpc/lazarus
>>> on any arm-linux platform. :)
>> Sounds great. So maybe Mark could do  some testing and enhance the
>> text to be more general.
>
> I'll see what I can do, but it might be better if I started off by
> transcribing my notes into a new page which could then be reconciled.
>
> I had a lot of difficulty at the time that Debian was forcing a
> transition from ABI to EABI. I think it was Jonas who pointed me at a
> binary that got me out of some of the problems, but I'm very quick to
> admit that I don't really know my way around the various non-production
> versions.

I've hacked something into
http://wiki.lazarus.freepascal.org/Native_ARM_Systems based on my notes
and an audit of what I've installed on development systems. If anybody
has additional detail please add it, in particular if anybody has useful
links for things like getting FPC or Lazarus sources over Subversion
they could go in.

Another useful page would be on getting/building libgdb- has anybody
done this (and if not where should it be)?

I wonder if I could make a suggestion: if anybody adds arcana related to
hardware that the rest of the community doesn't have, please initial it
so that everybody knows who the expert is :-)

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Re: [Lazarus] FPC and Lazarus on ARM

Marco van de Voort
In reply to this post by Henry Vermaak
On Fri, Mar 25, 2011 at 10:06:47AM +0000, Henry Vermaak wrote:

> > The latter is particularly interesting since it is effectively a desktop
> > (sata + lots of USB + VGA). I'm planning to install the just new Fedora 13
> > and need to set up a crosscompile kernel.
>
> I've been thinking about getting one of these:
>
> http://www.genesi-usa.com/products/efika
>
> I need something small and quiet to drive my projector and with the
> new debian armhf port, the performance could be quite nice, too.
> Cortex A8 seems like the thing to go for now, with linaro and debian
> focusing on armv7 + vfp3 mainly.

800mhz is a tad slow though.  Very affordable though.

The Openrd armv5 1.2GHz seems hardly able to run a modern browser. (I had
some embedded firefox variant on my default openrd install)

I'm not sure how much FP a browser uses though (due to scaling requirements
it might actually use FP).


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Re: [Lazarus] FPC and Lazarus on ARM

Michael Schnell
In reply to this post by Mark Morgan Lloyd
Thanks a lot !
Great Work.

I am really astonished to hear that you were to run a graphical desktop
on the slug. Could you  elaborate on that a little bit ?

Thanks,
-Michael

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Re: [Lazarus] FPC and Lazarus on ARM

Henry Vermaak
In reply to this post by Marco van de Voort
On 25/03/11 14:49, Marco van de Voort wrote:

> On Fri, Mar 25, 2011 at 10:06:47AM +0000, Henry Vermaak wrote:
>>> The latter is particularly interesting since it is effectively a desktop
>>> (sata + lots of USB + VGA). I'm planning to install the just new Fedora 13
>>> and need to set up a crosscompile kernel.
>>
>> I've been thinking about getting one of these:
>>
>> http://www.genesi-usa.com/products/efika
>>
>> I need something small and quiet to drive my projector and with the
>> new debian armhf port, the performance could be quite nice, too.
>> Cortex A8 seems like the thing to go for now, with linaro and debian
>> focusing on armv7 + vfp3 mainly.
>
> 800mhz is a tad slow though.  Very affordable though.

The Cortex A8 (armv7) is 2 generations newer than the Kirkwood processor
on open-rd (armv5).  It's got almost twice the DMIPS/MHz.  I'd be very
surprised if it's slower.

> I'm not sure how much FP a browser uses though (due to scaling requirements
> it might actually use FP).

Driving graphics is also probably a big factor.

Henry

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Re: [Lazarus] FPC and Lazarus on ARM

Mark Morgan Lloyd
In reply to this post by Marco van de Voort
Marco van de Voort wrote:

> On Fri, Mar 25, 2011 at 10:06:47AM +0000, Henry Vermaak wrote:
>>> The latter is particularly interesting since it is effectively a desktop
>>> (sata + lots of USB + VGA). I'm planning to install the just new Fedora 13
>>> and need to set up a crosscompile kernel.
>> I've been thinking about getting one of these:
>>
>> http://www.genesi-usa.com/products/efika
>>
>> I need something small and quiet to drive my projector and with the
>> new debian armhf port, the performance could be quite nice, too.
>> Cortex A8 seems like the thing to go for now, with linaro and debian
>> focusing on armv7 + vfp3 mainly.
>
> 800mhz is a tad slow though.  Very affordable though.
>
> The Openrd armv5 1.2GHz seems hardly able to run a modern browser. (I had
> some embedded firefox variant on my default openrd install)
>
> I'm not sure how much FP a browser uses though (due to scaling requirements
> it might actually use FP).

I find that surprising, since I could run Debian's Mozilla on a 32Mb
Slug /provided/ that I used FluxBox rather than KDE as the window
manager. There is always a possibility that current browsers use vastly
more resources than the one with Debian (which isn't exactly famed for
being bleeding edge)... but there's also the possibility that they've
regressed to the position they shared with Lazarus a couple of years ago
of generating far too much X-protocol traffic which made remote
operation infeasible.

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Mark Morgan Lloyd
markMLl .AT. telemetry.co .DOT. uk

[Opinions above are the author's, not those of his employers or colleagues]

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