ARMCompilers

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This page is about compilers (toolchains) for ARM (Linux) based boards, mainly focussed to ARM Cortex A8 on BeagleBoard.

GCC compiler

Recommendations

CodeSourcery ARM GNU/Linux tool chain is the version with the support for the latest ARM architecture. Mainline gcc also has stable ARM support. Enhancements are made in the Codesourcery version first, and are then pushed back to mainline.

2009q1-203 version is recommended. If you look for native tool chain, you can also install a native tool-chain from Angstrom.

Note: If you will use only OpenEmbedded (OE) to build code for your Beagle, you don't need to download the CodeSourcery compiler. OE builds a cross-compiler from source as part of the bitbake process.

The Free Electrons Beagle training material uses Crosstool-ng.

Limitations

Note: Some users report problems using Linux installer version. If installer doesn't work for you, download tar version (section Advanced Packages), copy extracted arm-2007q3 directory to /opt/codesourcery/arm-none-linux-gnueabi/ and add /opt/codesourcery/arm-none-linux-gnueabi/arm-2007q3/bin to your path.

  • Note: CodeSourcery 2008q1 has the following issues:
    • Vectorization + NEON is broken
    • building static binaries with cortex-a8 flag (or any ARMv7a core) is broken
    • some armv6 compilations end in ICE.
  • Note: CodeSourcery 2008q3 (now replaced by 2008q3-72) has the following issues:
    • Broken NEON support using -fmpu=neon -mfloat-abi=softfp -mcpu=cortex-a8 -O3
    • It was told to miscompile U-Boot, but this seems to be fixed with recent U-Boot and 2008q3-72 below.
  • Note: CodeSourcery 2009q1 has the following issues:

GDB debugger

gdb supports native debug or 'gdbserver' remote debug. For debug support for VFPv3 and NEON, you must use the 'gdbserver' approach - see How to enable VFPv3/NEON debug.

ARM RVDS compiler

ARM has the Realview Developer Suite, with arguably better code generation than gcc. An DVD evaluation version is available (or download via internet by registering followed by download).

ARM RVDS tools can be used to generate Linux applications and shared-libraries, by following the Apps Note 212 Building Linux applications using RVCT v4.0 and the GNU Tools and Libraries

ARM RVDS can also work in Scratchbox, by following Apps Note 221 RealView Development Suite 4.0 ARM Compiler for Scratchbox