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Re: Multi-Processor support

On Wed, 23 Oct 1996, Markus Illenseer wrote:

> > Currently the BeBox is PReP, but it is supposed to become CHRP/whatever
> > almost as soon as its name and definition are fixed. If that includes
> > OFW then the BeBox will support it.
>  Normally PowerPC-Platform (PPCP, aka CHRP) should integrate OFW. Let's see.

BeBox uses some PReP chips, but they do not yet support Open Firmware.
Their FAQ Web page says, "We don't yet use OpenBoot.  We are actively
working to support it."  They have a flash ROM, so hopefully existing
boxes will be upgradable through software.  Let's cross our fingers and

> > There is currently a Linux version for the BeBox. It boots by using a
> > floppy that masquerades as a BeOS boot disk. I have read that it has SMP
> > support but in the very crude form of a single lock around the kernel.
> > I have not verified that or tried it yet, but if this is true I'd say
> > that NetBSD can do better ;-)
>  I have heard about that. NetBSD already does better than that, the biggest
> problem for the Be-folks is the non-standard hardware and the missing
> documentations. 

Be would like to provide documentation to developers, but I am under the
impression that they are far too busy to be of much help right now.  They
have a BeOS for PowerMac release to get out the door, and for DR9 they are
completely reimplementing the filesystem layer!  The Linux port was during
a period of time when Be was far less frantic with their other deadlines,
and therefore able to support the porting team.

>  Currently I do not know how to deal with two processors, I believe that
> you need to enable SMP (that is symetric multiprocessing) anyway, so
> by default only one CPU is working?

I believe so.  I haven't tried Linux on BeBox yet.  I have a 486 PC
running FreeBSD sitting next to the BeBox and connected by Ethernet, so
I'd rather run BeOS and telnet into a real UNIX box for the things I can't
do natively with BeOS (which has a POSIX layer in addition to a GUI and
native C++ API).

-- Jake

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