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Old 04-28-2012, 05:53 AM   #1
caduqued
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" Is it really needed in 2012 to support using a non-SMP i486 kernel on Slackware? "


Well, the question is not mine. It is actually Pat's question, posed in extra folder... and the suggestion to open a thread is also Pat's. So I am just taking the initiative, and let's hear some thoughts...

In slackware-current/extra/linux-3.2.13-nosmp-sdk/ , Pat asks...

Quote:
"... is it really needed in 2012 to support using a non-SMP i486 kernel on Slackware? I'm thinking it isn't, and considering dropping this on the x86 IA32 side, where about the most minimal instruction set likely to be encountered these days is an Atom or something along those lines.

Thoughts appreciated on this! Perhaps a thread on LinuxQuestions.org?

- Pat "

Last edited by caduqued; 04-28-2012 at 06:41 AM.
 
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Old 04-28-2012, 06:26 AM   #2
the3dfxdude
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The actual quote:

"But is it really needed in 2012 to support using a
non-SMP i486 kernel on Slackware?"

So we are talking about removing non-smp i486 kernel? Fine by me.
 
Old 04-28-2012, 06:57 AM   #3
GazL
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Was it ever "needed"? My understanding is that the smp-enabled kernels work fine on uni-processor machines.


IMO the huge/generic split doesn't have much value either. I'd be in favour of simplifying this further and just having a single kernel option..
 
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Old 04-28-2012, 07:05 AM   #4
caduqued
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GazL View Post
Was it ever "needed"? My understanding is that the smp-enabled kernels work fine on uni-processor machines.


IMO the huge/generic split doesn't have much value either. I'd be in favour of simplifying this further and just having a single kernel option..
Yes, I agree... even several ARM processors are SMP-capable, so I don't see any point in keeping this in the current mainstream of Slackware. Architectures with memory exclusively dedicated to a single or uni-processor are extremely rare nowadays...

I would vote for a "just drop it"...
 
Old 04-28-2012, 07:27 AM   #5
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As far as I understand the SMP kernel requires i686 at minimum. While I don't see the specific need for a non-SMP kernel, there is still i486 SoC hardware out there, like Soekris. As long as the Linux developers support these, there should at least be left an option in Slackware.

Last edited by jtsn; 04-28-2012 at 07:28 AM.
 
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Old 04-28-2012, 07:40 AM   #6
caduqued
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I am not really an expert, but sticking to Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Symmetric_multiprocessing) even since those days of 486 and Pentium-Pro processors, a good bunch of them were already smp-capable.
 
Old 04-28-2012, 08:50 AM   #7
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As long as the Linux developers support these, there should at least be left an option in Slackware. <--- amen to that!
 
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Old 04-28-2012, 10:01 AM   #8
guzzi
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The distribution needs to have as an install option a kernel that will boot on a non-SMP system of the lowest order. This could be a very limited kernel which would allow a older unit to boot, and then it would be up to the user to configure and compile it as required for their system.

I suspect that Slackers are quite capable of building their own kernels.
 
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Old 04-28-2012, 12:25 PM   #9
allend
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There was a poll on this in late 2010. http://www.linuxquestions.org/questi...o-i686-834806/

I did have a simple server running 13.37 http://www.linuxquestions.org/questi...3/#post4448588 that required the non-SMP kernel, but it was reverted to running Windows98 late last year. As Hangdog42 pointed out in that thread
Quote:
I forget, is that CPU abacus based or do you have to bang the rocks together?
I also have some old machines running Windows that I have imaged by booting using the non-SMP kernel from a Slackware 12 install disk with additional support for NTFS added. I actually needed to use an earlier version of Slackware for this as 13.37 requires 128MB RAM. A typical live CD like SystemRescueCd requires even more RAM to boot. I mention this to qualify the point that guzzi made. The distribution already has support for non-SMP systems of the lowest order via the earlier versions, but such systems have physical limits that cannot accommodate the latest huge kernel and associated binaries in the installer.
 
Old 04-28-2012, 12:51 PM   #10
SergMarkov
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duron 900 512 mb
 
Old 04-28-2012, 02:31 PM   #11
yars
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IMHO, in topic: no, non-SMP kernels today is not needed for PC's, but need to leave the opportunity to build your own kernel.
 
Old 04-28-2012, 10:53 PM   #12
rigelan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GazL View Post
IMO the huge/generic split doesn't have much value either. I'd be in favour of simplifying this further and just having a single kernel option..
Perhaps. But the generic is needed by some (like those who need to disable NOUVEAU to run the NVIDIA proprietary).
 
Old 04-29-2012, 12:16 AM   #13
kingbeowulf
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I vote for smp only. This will provide a fine excuse for me to clean out my office! I can run older slackware or build my own kernel if needed. A huge kernel is ok, esp. for boot install, as most systems these days have plenty of RAM. The generic kernel should stay, since one doesn't need to load every tom, dick and harry module into memory if you don't have it.
 
Old 04-29-2012, 12:19 AM   #14
wildwizard
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rigelan View Post
Perhaps. But the generic is needed by some (like those who need to disable NOUVEAU to run the NVIDIA proprietary).
Er no you don't NOUVEAU is a module in both kernels.
 
Old 04-29-2012, 12:36 AM   #15
kingbeowulf
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wildwizard View Post
Er no you don't NOUVEAU is a module in both kernels.
Correct. If you want Nvidia you need to blacklist nouveau regardless of kernel, or compile a new kernel.
 
  


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