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Hi All, First of thank you to all for helping and providing support to each other. I have bare board with iMX21 (processor), Bluetooth, RF, GSM, WiFi chip on it. ...
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  1. #1
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    How to bringup bare computing board with Linux on it


    Hi All,

    First of thank you to all for helping and providing support to each other.

    I have bare board with iMX21 (processor), Bluetooth, RF, GSM, WiFi chip on it. Apart from ICs, I have SW in terms on uBoot on processors ROM.

    Can you please suggest me how should I go ahead with bringing up this board with fully functional Linux on it.

    Thank you all in advance.

    DM

  2. #2
    Linux Guru Rubberman's Avatar
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    I take it that this is the Freescale ARM9 chip? I also assume that it will boot from flash rom? I would suggest going to the freescale website and get their Linux stack for this device, along with the assorted documentation, as in how to reflash the rom so it can boot linux. The process isn't difficult, but it isn't simple. If the board is manufactured by someone other than freescale, then you should probably go to their web site for support on installing/running Linux on it.
    Sometimes, real fast is almost as good as real time.
    Just remember, Semper Gumbi - always be flexible!

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    Thank You Rubberman for your prompt response.

    I take it that this is the Freescale ARM9 chip?
    Answer: Yes thats true.

    I also assume that it will boot from flash rom?
    Answer: Yes I too assumed same before I actually connected board with my Linux Development board.

    Actually, board has been manufactured by some other company and now they are refusing any kind of support for it.

    The only thing I have with me is:
    a) Board Schematic
    b) Documentation from Freescale
    c) and offcourse board.

    with just few lines of comments from manufacturer.

    Thanks once again.

    DM

  4. #4
    Linux Guru Rubberman's Avatar
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    Who is the board manufacturer, and what is its part/model number? Perhaps we can help you find out more about the particulars. If the board was built to freescale, or some other major manufacturer's specs, then the software/docs from the other manufacturer (freescale) may be applicable.
    Sometimes, real fast is almost as good as real time.
    Just remember, Semper Gumbi - always be flexible!

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    Actually board is custom made with iMX21, GSM, RF, WiFi, Bluetooth, memory, USB on board. It was manufactured by small company in Europe.

    The manufacturing company forward us just the HAB tool kit thats it. Nothing else.

    Just few minutes back, I tried connecting board through USB to my Linux Development machine and tried connecting it through Kermit. However, after swtiching it on, nothing appears on the kermit console.

    Then I tried connecting the board to my Windows machine and tried connections through Teraterm but still console shows me some junk characters. I tried changing baud rate but no improvement.

    Is it possible that USB they have provided cannot be used as Debugging?

    Thank You,
    Dhaval

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    Linux Guru Rubberman's Avatar
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    Is there a serial console port? I would not be surprised if the USB cannot be used for debugging. Normally, such boards use JTAG hardware interfaces for debugging and uploading initial flash boot images in order to get to where you have a kernel installed that will boot and bring up (initialize and integrate) the other devices such as USB, ethernet, etc. Myself I use boards from a US manufacturer, Technologic Systems (Technologic Systems PC/104 Single Board Computers and Peripherals) that provides all the documentation you need to get their boards running, plus a full Linux (Debian) kernel with compiler tool chain and device drivers for their hardware components. There are other ARM board manufacturers that provide similar information, software, and tool chains.
    Sometimes, real fast is almost as good as real time.
    Just remember, Semper Gumbi - always be flexible!

  7. #7
    Linux Enthusiast Mudgen's Avatar
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    You continue to amaze me, Rub.

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    Thank you once again.

    Manufacturer of my board forwarded us documents present at Freescale site. He has not provided any of the additional documentation.

    Now I have is Board with Freescale iMX21 on it, with freescale HAB's tool on my local PC, boot binary. Using this can I install:

    a) uMon
    b) Linux?

  9. #9
    Linux Guru Rubberman's Avatar
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    Hmmm. Well, if they are forwarding Freescale docs, then you might want to try their Linux distribution and tool chain.
    Sometimes, real fast is almost as good as real time.
    Just remember, Semper Gumbi - always be flexible!

  10. #10
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    FWIW, I have a Freescale iMX31 board (from Phytec) and it came with Pengutronix distribution of Linux (embedded Debian derivative). I managed to put Fedora 8 on it using the packages from this repo.

    It wasn't too bad, I just had to make a custom initscript that mounted an SD Card which had my Fedora 8 filesystem ready, then I pivotroot into it and I'm up and running.

    I did brick it in the process of course, and had to make my own JTAG cable (like Rubberman said) so I could upload a good ROM and start over - fun times.

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