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Success! HPPA, K570 & DistCC.
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Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 29

PostPosted: Fri Dec 23, 2005 5:01 am    Post subject: Success! HPPA, K570 & DistCC. Reply with quote

Well, I've gotten Gentoo HPPA Linux finally running smoothly and working wonderfully on my K570.

The box has the following hardware:

1x Core IO
1x 2 Slot HSC Backplane Card
6x 200mhz HPPA 2.0/64 Bit Processors
2x Memory Carriers (4.5GB Total)
4x Quantum 9.1GB Ultra 2 Drives (LSI HVD->UltraSE Converter)
1x Exabyte Mammoth 20/40GB Tape Drive
1x Pioneer DVDRom Drive
1x Agilent GBIC FC Card (unsupported?)
1x HP/DEC Tulip Dual Port 100baseT Card (Eth1)

Running 2.6.15 from (SMP).

The machine boots in about ~25 minutes. All PDC tests are enabled (as well as Memory testing).

My main rig' is a Dual Opteron 244 (1.8ghz), running Fedora Core 4 x86_64.
I crosscompiled GCC 3.3.3, Binutils 2.15, and GLIBC 2.3.2 targeted at HPPA Arch. DistCCd is setup and running w/4 Jobs Max.

The K570 uses GCC 3.3.6, Binutils 2.16.1, and GLIBC 2.3.4-20040808-r1. This one uses DistCC (in place of gcc or g++). DistCC is setup for 6 Jobs Max.

DistCC was configured with: "distcc-configure --set-hosts "localhost/6" where is my Opteron box.

The two machines hold hands nicely and compile merrily along. For some extreemly crude tests:
Building the Linux Kernel:
K570, 'make && make modules_install': 1 Hour 45 Minutes
K570, 'make -j6 && make modules_install": 1 Hour 6 Minutes
K570, 'make -j10 CC="distcc gcc" CCX="distcc gcc" && make modules_install": Under ~25 Minutes

DistCC speeds things up nicely here. Portage seems to randomly work, many packages completly ignore DistCC and -j10 under MAKEOPTS. Those that do utilize DistCC you can noticably notice scrolling faster :).

I plan on building a VMWare Image for VMWarePlayer of TinyGentoo with the HPPA Cross Compiler and DistCC, see how fast I can really get things going here.

If anyone wants any additional information on my setup, let me know. I'll see what I can dig up for you.

-ScottishCaptain (dabinka)
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Retired Dev
Retired Dev

Joined: 23 Jan 2005
Posts: 1324

PostPosted: Fri Dec 23, 2005 6:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A 25 minute boot? Is this typical for your arch, or for your machine's particular usage and/or configuration?

This question comes from a surprised x86 user. :)
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Tux's lil' helper
Tux's lil' helper

Joined: 02 Feb 2005
Posts: 96
Location: KA, Germany

PostPosted: Fri Dec 23, 2005 9:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

PA-RISC boxes take some time to boot, depending on the installed hardware ans memory, as the hardware initialization and testing is dome somewhat more thorough than on normal x86 boxes, but 25 minutes is a lot of time even for an hppa box.
You have to consider one additional thing: On normal x86 boxes, you are using cheap mainstream equipment. If you've ever seen the initialization process of a professional SCSI RAID controller in an x86 server, then you will understand the longer bootup process of box packed with professional equiment, as are the K class machines from HP.
We are talking about a 6 way 64 bit machine with 200 MHz and 4.5 GB of RAM as well as SCSI disks and a tape drive.
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Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 29

PostPosted: Sat Dec 24, 2005 2:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote


This isn't any x86 computer by a long shot.

This particular system (in the rackmount metal case) is about the size of a small home furnace. It weighs in at over 300lb parked under my particular shelfs on a metal dolly so I can wheel it out for maintenence. The powersource alone weighs over 50lb and is stuffed with some unflatteringly large capacitors and resistors, and some other High voltage parts I've never seen before.

Just for perspective, your typical x86 system runs at around 30 Amps on the 3.3v line.

This system runs at 290 Amps on the 3.3v Line (!!!!!!). Yes, Two Hundred and Ninety Amperes. It takes well over a minute for the PSU just to "apply the DC Power" when you turn the keyswitch (!!) to turn the system on.

The system tests just about every bit it can test in terms of Memory. Thats 4MB/L1*6 Processors, and 4.5GB RAM. It also verifies the operation of every IO port and the internal operation of each processor core. Afaik your typical x86 system bootup is as basic as "Are you there Video Card?" "Yes." "Okay lets boot". Whereas with these machines they test everything physically possible to test.

Otherwise, its a fun box to play with. Dwarfs my opteron, isn't nearly as fast, but I guess part of it is the satisfaction that I saved a K Class from being shipped back to HP for recycling :).
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