[svlug] Linux toolchain and debugging on host but not on embedded target.

Ivan Sergio Borgonovo mail at webthatworks.it
Tue Nov 10 10:21:11 PST 2015

Few months ago I was trying to get an idea of what embedded Linux was 
all about.

Thanks to the people here that pointed me to building system and device 
tree now I even found the time to give my nano contribution to Yocto [1].

The journey was more amenable than what I thought. It was so nice that I 
think sooner or later everything will run the Universal Operating System.

One of the things that moved me to contribute back was to build up a 
comfortable development environment where I don't even have to be 
worried about long term maintenance or being able to switch to another 

I got so pampered that I'd like to replicate the experience with CPU 
that don't run Linux but where I can have all development tools 
including a debugger running on Linux.

I got burned with AVR32 that lost support for the eclipse plug-in and 
the gdbproxy under Linux. They moved everything to Visual Studio, 
something that is very hard to understand especially by Atmel.

I don't want and need to run Linux on the CPU mainly because I'll have 
some strict timing constraint and I don't need a network stack.
Still I may need to use some popular encryption or math libraries.
I may find useful to be able to run FreeRTOS.

Virtually I could debug on many ARM chip with gdb, OpenOCD and JTAG.

But does anyone has some advice to share?
eg. what vendor is more linux friendly? what jtag adapter or alternative 
to OpenOCD? What vendor has interesting libraries?

Anything else to consider other than ARM?

I'll surely have to read datasheet to see if I've the IO I need etc... 
but should I check anything else to see if I'm choosing something Linux 
friendly? eg. propension to release as open source libraries to support 
specialized hardware etc...



Ivan Sergio Borgonovo

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