Table of contents
This is probably the most complicated topic of all related to embedded
development but we need to deal with it at the beginning. I read a lot about
toolchains but still don’t know enough to explain details. I think that best
answers are in crosstool-ng documentation.
What is toolchain ?
Toolchain as the name said is a set of tools chained together, so output of
one tool is the input for different tool. This is well known concept in
Linux (eg. pipes). In embedded environment toolchain is called cross-toolchain or
cross-compiler, because usually it compiles on one architecture and generate
code for another (eg. it compiles on x86 and generate code for arm).
Why we need cross-toolchain ?
I suspect that your laptop/PC is not based on ARM processor, most probably it based on
x86 architecture so you cannot simply compile code and run it in our
virtual-arm-based environment. To prepare operating system and tools for it we
How to create toolchain ?
Process of creating cross-toolchain from scratch is not easy and takes some
time. There are few other ways to get toolchain, than creating it from scratch.
First we can use prebuilt toolchain providers like:
Emdebian. Second we can create toolchain using special building system like:
Bitbake. I will not deal with preparing toolchain in this series
because procedure for creating it takes pretty long. So we have two options:
Add below lines to you
deb http://ftp.uk.debian.org/emdebian/toolchains unstable main
Install Emdebian keys, update and install cross-compiler with all related
sudo apt-get install emdebian-archive-keyring
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install gcc-4.7-arm-linux-gnueabi
Dependency problems during installation
If above attempt to install cross-compiler ends with:
pietrushnic@eglarest:~/src$ sudo apt-get install gcc-4.7-arm-linux-gnueabi
Reading package lists... Done
Building dependency tree
Reading state information... Done
Some packages could not be installed. This may mean that you have
requested an impossible situation or if you are using the unstable
distribution that some required packages have not yet been created
or been moved out of Incoming.
The following information may help to resolve the situation:
The following packages have unmet dependencies:
gcc-4.7-arm-linux-gnueabi : Depends: libgomp1-armel-cross (>= 4.7.2-5) but it
is not going to be installed
E: Unable to correct problems, you have held broken packages.
This means that Debian ustable cross-compiler is not available for you
configuration. You can read more about that
To fix that issue simply change emdebian toochain repository to testing in
deb http://ftp.uk.debian.org/emdebian/toolchains testing main
Emdebian toolchain configuration
arm-linux-eabi-gcc-4.7 was installed:
arm-linux-gnueabi-gcc-4: /usr/bin/arm-linux-gnueabi-gcc-4.7 /usr/bin/X11/arm-linux-gnueabi-gcc-4.7
It is not linked to
arm-linux-gnueabi-gcc, so we cannot give its prefix as
variable value, which is needed for bootloader and kernel compilation. We have to link
sudo ln -s /usr/bin/arm-linux-gnueabi-gcc-4.7 /usr/bin/arm-linux-gnueabi-gcc
Toolchain is ready to use.
Note: I tried
but it contain
binutils defect that not allow correctly build kernel. If you see
something like this in log:
Error: selected processor does not support ARM mode `ldralt lr,[r1],#4'
That means you experience same thing, please use
Note 2: If you’re
Ubuntu user I have to suggest experiments with toolchain
build by your own, because I get really hard times trying to go through this
tutorial with Ubuntu/Linaro cross compiler provided in repository. Finally I
to push things forward. U-boot compiled with Ubuntu/Linaro toolchain had problem
__udivsi3 instruction. This cause loop in initialization process.
If you take effort of creating toolchain using
congratulations. But for simplifying whole Virtual Development Board
series I will use
Emdebian toolchain in further posts. Of course you can use
your brand new
Crosstool-NG toolchain by simply remember that tools prefixes are
Crosstool-NG was created with
arm-unknown-linux-gnueabi-. Replace one with another every time when needed.
In next post we will deal with