My ARM development notes

These are my notes to get useful cross-compilation, even with autotools, and GStreamer stuff.

toolchain

The convention is to have ‘arm-linux-gcc‘ and so on, so that you can compile with ‘make CROSS_COMPILE=arm-linux-‘, the kernel and many other projects assume this is the default.

First, you would need ‘~/bin‘ to be on your path, so make sure you have it on ‘~/.bash_profile‘ (export PATH="$HOME/bin:$PATH") or whatever your favorite shell uses.

I use CodeSourcery (GNU/Linux 2009q3), you can fetch it from here.

cd ~/bin
toolchain=/opt/arm-2009q3
for x in $toolchain/bin/arm-none-linux-gnueabi-*
do
ln -s $x arm-linux-${x#$toolchain/bin/arm-none-linux-gnueabi-}
done

QEMU

This is needed for sb2 in order to kind of emulate an ARM system.

git clone git://git.savannah.nongnu.org/qemu.git
cd qemu
git checkout -b stable v0.12.5
./configure --prefix=/opt/qemu --target-list=arm-linux-user
make install

sbox2

This is needed to avoid most of the pain caused by autotools (thank you GNU… not!).

git clone git://gitorious.org/scratchbox2/scratchbox2.git
cd scratchbox2
git checkout -b stable 2.1
./autogen.sh --prefix=/opt/sb2
make install

Add sb2 to the PATH:
export PATH=/opt/sb2/bin:$PATH

sb2 target

Now it’s time to configure a target.

cd /opt/arm-2009q3/arm-none-linux-gnueabi/libc/
sb2-init -c /opt/qemu/bin/qemu-arm armv7 /opt/arm-2009q3/bin/arm-none-linux-gnueabi-gcc

You can check that it works with:
sb2 gcc --version

GStreamer

We are going to install everything into ‘/opt/arm/gst‘, so:

export PKG_CONFIG_PATH=/opt/arm/gst/lib/pkgconfig

You can skip the steps here and go directly to deployment if you download and extract this tarball on your target.

zlib

This is needed by GLib’s gio (which cannot be configured out).

wget -c http://zlib.net/zlib-1.2.5.tar.gz
tar -xf zlib-1.2.5.tar.gz
cd zlib-1.2.5
sb2 ./configure --prefix=/opt/arm/gst
sb2 make install

glib

GLib has bugs (623473, 630910) detecting zlib (thank you Mattias… not!). So either apply my patches, or do the C_INCLUDE_PATH/LDFLAGS hacks below:

export C_INCLUDE_PATH='/opt/arm/gst/include' LDFLAGS='-L/opt/arm/gst/lib'

git clone git://git.gnome.org/glib
cd glib
git checkout -b stable 2.24.1
./autogen.sh --noconfigure
sb2 ./configure --prefix=/opt/arm/gst --disable-static --with-html-dir=/tmp/dump
sb2 make install

gstreamer

git clone git://anongit.freedesktop.org/gstreamer/gstreamer
cd gstreamer
git checkout -b stable RELEASE-0.10.29
./autogen.sh --noconfigure
sb2 ./configure --prefix=/opt/arm/gst --disable-nls --disable-static --disable-loadsave --with-html-dir=/tmp/dump
sb2 make install

liboil

Needed by many GStreamer components.

git clone git://anongit.freedesktop.org/liboil
cd liboil
git checkout -b stable liboil-0.3.17
./autogen.sh --noconfigure
sb2 ./configure --prefix=/opt/arm/gst --disable-static --with-html-dir=/tmp/dump
sb2 make install

gst-plugins-base

git clone git://anongit.freedesktop.org/gstreamer/gst-plugins-base
cd gst-plugins-base
git checkout -b stable RELEASE-0.10.29
./autogen.sh --noconfigure
sb2 ./configure --prefix=/opt/arm/gst --disable-nls --disable-static --with-html-dir=/tmp/dump
sb2 make install

gst-plugins-good

git clone git://anongit.freedesktop.org/gstreamer/gst-plugins-good
cd gst-plugins-good
git checkout -b stable RELEASE-0.10.23
./autogen.sh --noconfigure
sb2 ./configure --prefix=/opt/arm/gst --disable-nls --disable-static --with-html-dir=/tmp/dump
sb2 make install

Deployment

So now we have everything installed in ‘/opt/arm/gst‘, but how to run on the target? Just copy the exact same files into the target on the exact same location, and then:

export PATH=/opt/arm/gst/bin:$PATH

That’s it, you can run gst-launch, gst-inspect, and so on.

Development

Ok, it should be clear how to do development from the previous steps, but in case it wasn’t clear, here’s how to:

gst-dsp

Each time you want to cross-compile, you need to tell pkg-config where to find the packages:

export PKG_CONFIG_PATH=/opt/arm/gst/lib/pkgconfig

git clone git://github.com/felipec/gst-dsp.git
cd gst-dsp
git checkout -b stable v0.8.0
make

Note that gst-dsp doesn’t use autotools, so sb2 is not needed.

Now, once you have the plugin (libgstdsp.so), copy to ‘/opt/arm/gst/lib/gstreamer-0.10‘ on the target.

And finally, you can run real gst-launch pipelines:
gst-launch playbin2 uri=file://$PWD/file.avi

Note: If you are missing some elements, play around with flags (flags=65 for native video-only)

Do some more development, type make, copy, repeat :)

Enjoy ;)

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3 thoughts on “My ARM development notes

  1. @Sebastian My main purpose is to have a setup that cross-compiles, my target usually has GStreamer already, I just copy the plugins I’m developing; I don’t really run what I install on /opt/arm/gst.

    Also, no pipeline in real use-cases exercises any elements that use orc/oil. I guess it’s good for testing, or certain very specific applications. But if somebody wants to use this in a production system, many things need to be changed, like disabling logging and extra checks.

    Anyway, I picked GStreamer 0.10.29 because I know it works. Maybe next time I’ll pick something above 0.10.30, or I’ll update this post, not that it will make much of a difference for cross-compilation.

  2. In case anybody wants to compile (and run) the latest upstream GStreamer with the official Fremantle SDK, after installing the needed compile-time dependencies they’ll need to modify autogen.sh and configure.ac in each package so that the dependency with automake is lowered to 1.8.

    For instance, in gstreamer core the file autogen.sh, line 43, has to be changed from:
    "ftp://ftp.gnu.org/pub/gnu/automake/" 1 10 || DIE=1
    to:
    "ftp://ftp.gnu.org/pub/gnu/automake/" 1 8 || DIE=1

    configure.ac, line 12 must be changed from:
    AM_INIT_AUTOMAKE([-Wno-portability 1.10])
    to:
    AM_INIT_AUTOMAKE([-Wno-portability 1.8])

    after doing this and launching:

    ./autogen.sh –noconfigure

    configuration and compilation should work like a charm (until some last-minute patches are breaking rules).

    I wonder why, if the effective dependency is with automake 1.8 (or lower), the configuration scripts have so a conservative approach. Thanks autotools.. not.

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