Re: xtensa architecture (-mm -> 2.6.13 merge status)

From: Chris Zankel
Date: Tue Jun 21 2005 - 12:26:11 EST

Andrew Morton wrote:
xtensa architecture

Is xtensa now, or will it be in the future a sufficiently popular
architecture to justify the cost of having this code in the tree?

Heaven knows. Will merge.


I understand your concern and am glad that you give Xtensa and the other smaller non-mainstream architectures a chance.

The Xtensa architecture is highly configurable and usually buried inside an SOC device. So, if you buy a new printer, digital camera, or cell phone, there is a chance that there is an Xtensa inside even though you don't know it (sometimes as a small audio-engine or as a control CPU). Linux hasn't been adopted widely with Xtensa yet, but with Linux growing in the embedded space, I am sure it will become much more important -- at least this is where I bet my time (and spare time) on.

To minimize the impact on other developers, I do understand that changes that affect all architectures will only be applied to the mainstream architectures and that the maintainers of the non-mainstream architectures then have to pick it up. Luckily, the architecture dependent files have their own confined space in the arch and asm directories.

In my opinion, as long as an architecture, driver, etc. is maintained and not obviously obsolete, it should be allowed to remain in the kernel.

I do have a few small patches in the queue but am struggling with some changes I want to make to the syscalls that might break some older code.

Thanks, ~Chris

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