Re: FatELF patches...

From: Mikael Pettersson
Date: Mon Nov 02 2009 - 20:36:13 EST

david@xxxxxxx writes:
> > FatELF means you have to compile for many archs. Do you even have the
> > necessary compilers? Extra time and disk space used for what, to solve
> > a non-problem?
> you don't have to compile multiple arches anymore than you have to provide
> any other support for that arch. FatELF is a way to bundle the binaries
> that you were already creating, not something to force you to support an
> arch you otherwise wouldn't (although if it did make it easy enough for
> you to do so that you started to support additional arches, that would be
> a good thing)

'bundle' by gluing .o files together rather than using what we already have:
directories, search paths, $VARIABLES in search paths, and ELF interpreters
and .so loaders that know to look in $ARCH subdirectories first (I used that
feature to perform an incremental upgrade from OABI to EABI on my ARM/Linux
systems last winter).

Someone, somewhere, has to inspect $ARCH and make a decision. Moving that
decision from user-space to kernel-space for ELF file loading is neither
necessary nor sufficient. Consider .a and .h files for instance.

> > I'm surprised this idea made it here. It certainly has merit for
> > installation medium, but it's called directory tree and/or .tar or .zip
> > there.
> if you have a 1M binary with 500M data, repeated for 5 arches it is not a
> win vs a single 505M FatELF package in all cases.

If I have a 1M binary with 500M non-arch data I'll split the package because
I'm not a complete moron.

IMNSHO FatELF is a technology pretending to be a solution to "problems"
that don't exist or have user-space solutions. Either way, it doesn't
belong in the Linux kernel.
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