Haiku makes progress on ARM port

There’s a new Haiku activity report, and there’s been a lot of activity over the past two months. My pick this time is progress on the ARM port.

tqh and kallisti5 are working on the ARM port. The bootloader is now running mostly fine in UEFI mode but there is some work to be done to set up the MMU before handing control over to the kernel. There are problems related to the “hardfloat” and “softfloat” ABIs on ARM, however. Until now we had worked with the “hardfloat” ABI for Haiku, assuming floating point hardware was available (as is the case on any modern CPU we could reasonably target). However, the EFI firmware does not properly handle these registers, and this seems to result in some confusion when passing data to and from the firmware. We may need to build the bootloader in soft-float mode (not using the hardware floating point processing), but that in turn creates some difficulties with properly configuring gcc.

On 64bit ARM, the floating point support is not optional, so it may be easier to move forward with the 64bit port first.

The ARM port is important for the future, since desktop and laptop ARM hardware may become far more available than it is today.

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