XP on OLPC - a contrarian view -- followup

Robert Myers rmyers7 at mindspring.com
Fri May 16 19:44:12 EDT 2008



1) I knew about the separate memory for the firmware. I've reloaded it 
often enough :-). I was more interested in publishing that thinking 
deeply about how the XO works.

2) Again, sorry about my loose use of language. I should know better, 
and try to be more precise. However, my understanding of the OF V2 is 
that it incorporates the legacy behavior of the underlying BIOS of a 
MS/DOS-Win machine, which is it's critical (at least for this issue) 
difference from OF V1.

But my point stands; the MS demo machine is single boot, and ignores the 
flash and its contents. This would be a very bad thing to let out of the 

>> I just saw the Microsoft video of an XO running XP. In it the XO 
>> single boots from an 'insyde' BIOS. The MS guy says that XP doesn't 
>> fit on the flash, and is installed on an SD card. In this case, I'd 
>> guess the flash is just being used as a home for the BIOS. 
> The system firmware + Embedded Controller firmware lives in a 1Meg SPI 
> NOR flash part connected to the EC.  The 1Gig NAND flash part does not 
> store any system firmware.
>> I can see why techs at MS did this to get a working prototype rather 
>> than having to wait for (or worse yet, contribute to) the OF V2 
>> bootloader/BIOS.
> I prefer to use the term system firmware because BIOS refers to a legacy 
> product class.  OpenFirmware's capabilities are so far above a legacy 
> BIOS product you can't even put them on the same scale.

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