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Subject: Re: Volunteering for porting Rockbox

Re: Volunteering for porting Rockbox

From: Daniel Stenberg <>
Date: Fri, 27 Aug 2004 11:07:17 +0200 (CEST)

On Thu, 26 Aug 2004, sophana wrote:

> When you say 'restructure a lot of things' did you mean restructure
> everything?

Perhaps. I think the point is the same. Move around lots of source code to
make it easier to port.

> When I have a look into rockbox architecture, it is so much related to the
> archos hardware that I wonder what is the percentage of code that can be
> shared between 2 or more architectures...

Then you have less belief in the Rockbox coding department than I have.

We have not been forced to deal with this level of portability in the Rockbox
code before, thus it is far from perfect at this moment. It doesn't mean we
can't fix it, given some thoughts and efforts.

> A good example is the display: between the players and recorders, there are
> already 2 branches, and the common code does contain lots of 'IFDEF'.

Yes? #ifdefs is part of portable programming.

> A common architecture is not so easy to find... Or should I say the most
> standard architecture is ... posix, so porting rockbox into linux (posix
> complient) would help a lot, and you could then run rockbox on ipods.

POSIX is not an architecture, it is a set of API:s. We have already tried to
use the POSIX APIs for several of our internal functions just because people
are used to them and they have been used successfully on many platforms for
many years.

> I know linux is not the smallest kernel ever seen. But there should be other
> open source micro kernels with pseudo standard API that rockbox could rely
> on.

What would be the benefit of porting Rockbox over to a new kernel? It already
has a "micro kernel" that is portable.

> One other big difference between hardware platforms is the memory size: if
> linux could be ported to ipods, this probably means that ipods have
> suffucient memory to host linux.

32MB ram should be able to run basicly any OS except windows! ;-)

Sure, if booting Linux on a device and having it run there is easier, quicker
and makes a better music player, then there's no need for Rockbox on such a

But, compared to for example the ipodlinux effort as documented on their site,
Rockbox is a superiour music player than what they offer.

> Bringing an open source kernel into the archos should be the first stage in
> improving rockbox portability.

I don't see why you think the kernel is the biggest portability issue. I think
the drivers are: LCD, sound (mp3, ogg, wav, etc) and USB for example.

> seems that avos have made a lot of work. they can play mp3 without rockbox.
> it seems that this platform is the most reverse engineered.

IIRC, the AV-series use a MAS for mp3.

  Daniel Stenberg -- --
Received on 2004-08-27

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