Firmware update

Kevin Gordon kgordon420 at
Wed Nov 24 17:40:58 EST 2010

Is this recommendation against yum and rpm for all software, or just the
oplc repo packages, the kernel and the firmware?  I'm certainly happy doing
just safe builds for the core.

However, as part of our 'refresh' stick when we wipe and install a new
signed build, we generally also include the necessary rpm's for cheese and a
couple of other utilities that are locally installed from the USB stick
using a bash script; or, for the Vernier software dependencies, the
dependent rpm's are installed by means of a python script.  However, they
are rpm's and they are downloaded onto the stick (the first time) using yum,
and they are then installed from the stick using --localinstall from the

Am I to understand that this a really 'caveat emptor' scenario?



On Wed, Nov 24, 2010 at 5:25 PM, Daniel Drake <dsd at> wrote:

> On 24 November 2010 08:26, Jerry Vonau <jvonau at> wrote:
> > I've played around with the bootfw rpm, altering the install path to
> > reflect where /boot really is on the filesystem while booted up. This
> > has the advantage of being able to use rpm/yum to stage the upgrade of
> > the firmware. Providing you have the power cable connected, once OFW
> > looks in /boot it will look for I'm just putting the zip in
> > the correct location to be found. I have a test re-roll of q3a50
> > available from:
> >
> Unfortunately this isn't suitable for inclusion. At build time, the
> partitioned layout is not setup, and it is not even known if the
> resultant image will even be split into partitions. So this would
> cause the build to fail.
> Additionally, part of the olpc-update design requires the entire
> crypto-signed filesystem to be available in one undivided place, so
> the RPM must continue installing to the "unpartitioned area" with the
> reliance that something else will handle partitioning later on.
> This is all touched upon in /boot/README, and I'll document it more
> detail (on the wiki) at some point soon.
> The kernel RPM also faces the same situation.
> And, in general OLPC advises against using yum and RPM on XOs. With
> certain packages, doing this will override various tweaks put in place
> by the build system. Sometimes the side effects will be subtle, and
> other times they will be obvious.
> It would be possible (but messy) to make bootfw and kernel RPMs "do
> the right thing" when installed on live booted XOs, but it would be
> fragile, and doesn't change the fact that general usage of yum/rpm is
> likely to cause you problems at some point.
> Daniel
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