Armeb removal before 12

Warner Losh imp at
Wed Jun 13 18:23:33 UTC 2018

On Wed, Jun 13, 2018 at 12:09 PM, Warner Losh <imp at> wrote:

> On Wed, Jun 13, 2018 at 11:39 AM, Rodney W. Grimes <
> freebsd-rwg at> wrote:
>> > I'd like to remove armeb before 12.0.
>> >
>> > It's poorly supported today.
>> >
>> > Nobody has tested the concurrency kit changes on it. And ck is now
>> > mandatory. We don't even know if it works or not.
>> >
>> > Last time we asked, it took quite a while to find users.
>> >
>> > It maxes out at 256MB of RAM. This is barely large enough for FreeBSD to
>> > run in.
>> 64MB is usable for 32 bit archs, I have many VM's running in
>> that configuration, so this item should not be in this list.
> Yes and no. A VM is a different beast to a real box. arm requires more
> memory in general, and a little more on real machines.
> You can run it in 128MB and do useful things, but not very many things.
> One cannot, for example, run a wifi access point on arm in 128MB, at least
> on this hardware. Adrian's ultra-stripped down stuff might be possible, but
> nobody has ported it to this hardware despite it being ported to many weird
> things. Likewise with the ZRouter project. You could run a simple sshd /
> dns server on it, but there's lots of other alternatives for that which are
> dirt cheap.
> One can, with a lot of effort, do 64MB too, but it's more effort than for
> i386. Even at 64MB on i386, though, the number of things you can do is
> quite limited. You can't build anything on that machine. DNS + SSH is
> possible here as well, as long as the zones are too big.
> So I'll concede the point it's possible, and I'm not looking to make it
> not be possible. However, we do need to draw the line somewhere, and this
> is but one factor of many. Were it the only factor here, we wouldn't be
> contemplating removal. Most people want to do more ambitious things that
> can be done in 256MB is all I was trying to say.

Just to followup...

On my 11.0 internal DHCP /  DNS server (dnsmasq), I have a Allwinner A20
board with 1GB ram that runs between 100-120MB avm 120-1320MB wired with
~750MB free. That's what I've been basing my 256MB to run comfortably
statements on. It's possible to do it with less, but it takes a lot of
tuning, custom kernels, and legwork to make it happen. This box has only 14
processes, apart from kernel threads and is pretty minimal.


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