How Far Should I go?

Alan Post alanpost at
Sun Oct 16 01:24:32 EDT 2011

On Sat, Oct 15, 2011 at 11:31:12PM -0500, cenobyte at wrote:
> I am wondering what you all think about how far I, or any of us, for
> that matter, should go with hacking on the Ben. For one, Qi adapted
> OpenWRT rather than made a new distribution from (near) scratch. Was
> this due to time constraints, or something else? Would it be worth
> it for someone to learn the MIPS architecture sufficiently well to
> make a Ben Tailored OS? Or, since the new Nanonote may or may not
> have a similar chip, is it better to stay "on the surface" as it
> were and not get too involved in low-level stuff? Maybe the
> experience alone of deep MIPS knowledge will be worth it even if we
> move to another chip in the future? If one does not go deeper than
> the kernel and other basic utils, I suppose "from scratch" would
> mean getting a custom kernel and utils, tuning them, then building
> from there, right?  I think in general, x86 GNU/Linux is assumed to
> be as optimized as it could be, but I'm not sure about other
> architectures like ARM, MIPS, etc. Since someone has already done
> the work, perhaps it is not good to try and re-do it...?

If you'd like to stay with Linux, but are interested in moving off
of OpenWRT, you might find one of these projects interesting for
your effort:

Neither of these are "ready-to-go" for the Ben; the second isn't
strictly a distribution.  They are both an attempt to build the
smallest *self-hosting* linux environment, and in that role make
good bootstrapping tools.

They're essentially one step above Linux From Scratch.

.i ma'a lo bradi cu penmi gi'e du

More information about the discussion mailing list