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Monthly Archives: April 2011

I had come into the course not knowing what to expect, the whole community aspect I knew about but was always on the sidelines watching in. I had built small programs before nothing really notes worthy but I had wondered how some of the programs got placed into linux distributions. I learnt how much work has to go into getting a package readily for a fedora distribution and the steps that need to take place for it to be approved.

The major project was where I found I got to really get my hands dirty in the community aspect. My approach was very hap hazard from release to release with no real idea of what my next step would be moving from 0.1 to 0.2 and 0.2 to 0.3. With the guidance of Chris Tyler I was able to get a grip of ideas that would be use full for my project and I mowed ahead. I was able to successfully complete my 0.1 and 0.2 which were getting the PandaBoards in the build farm to see and use more than the 512 MB which is only half the RAM. My 0.2 was to remove the reservation of RAM to VRAM.  Once those two releases where done the PandaBoard where now able to use over 900 MB when they where originally seeing 460 MB. Due to machine failure I was not able to complete my 0.3 which was build factor optimization for the PandaBoard on koji.

This course has given me a reason to reach out into the community and give something back my built MLO and u-boot.bin and part of my video driver less uImage are being used on the PandaBoard build farm for arm.koji. I can say that I have enjoyed this course much more than I thought I would have and looking back I am sure I have gained some skills and knowledge that I will use somewhere down the line either continuing in the community or at work.


For my 0.3 I was to figure out the best build factor on koji for the PandaBoards. Due to unforeseen technical issues with hongkong the arm koji server. Even if the site was fully restored and functionally by Wednesday I am not sure I would have had a moment where I could take down all but one of the PandaBoard builders to do my testing.

So I am going to include some info that was shared with me by our professor Chris Tyler. He had said in his preliminary testing with the httpd package with the build factor set to 4 allowing for two consecutive jobs then running 4 there was a overall increase of jobs done as compared to building 3 jobs in sequence. He had also told me that the httpd package was not really as good test for measuring purposing but for the use of quick testing it was sufficient.

For my 0.3 I will be doing testing on the Koji farm to determine the optimum build factor for the PandaBoards. Currently it is 2 which is the default for Koji, this currently only allows for one task to be built at a time on board which was good for the guru plug and the beagle board, but not the PandaBoard which has more than twice the potential of the other boards on the build farm.

The idea from Chris Tyler is to take down all but one machine on  the build farm and queue a bunch of jobs edit the build factor and watch the time taken for builds and determine what the best build factor is.  The package I plan to test this out on is the firefox rpm for arm. I am planning to do testing on this sometime over the next couple of days.