Author Topic: HostBoot VS CoreBoot  (Read 695 times)

MauryG5

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HostBoot VS CoreBoot
« on: August 30, 2021, 08:14:59 am »
Power Community Hello everyone, connecting to the HostBoot / CoreBoot speech just started thanks to our new member and friend Pietrushnic, I wanted to start analyzing more concretely what it is about. I'll post some links where you can clearly see the net difference in startup between the classic BMC startup in HostBoot mode and the same then, in the new CoreBoot mode. You can clearly see the marked difference of the two starts and I must say that the conditions for this new type of firmware in CoreBoot are really good. We know how slow BMC is currently booting into HostBoot mode, we have been talking about it for some time if I remember correctly, about how to speed up this boot a bit. Well, a possible solution is given by those of 3mdeb, with their new firmware written in CoreBoot that from what you see in the videos, from a nice acceleration to everything ...

https://github.com/3mdeb/openpower-coreboot-docs/blob/681ecad510d66a1f2e5cced06596c1cd10f3855b/devnotes/user_perspective.md

You can see that in the test, entering the Talos BMC with a second computer in this case, a test is performed with HostBoot boot which is the current one we use and then a boot in CoreBoot which is what 3mdeb is working on ... The improvement it seems remarkable to me ...

pietrushnic

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Re: HostBoot VS CoreBoot
« Reply #1 on: August 30, 2021, 03:58:28 pm »
Thanks MauryG5,
of course we are not yet production ready and I'm not sure if boot time would be the most significant improvement. We would definitely like to hear from community what other obstacles or issues were faced with hostboot, if any. From developers perspective this is C++ (hostboot) vs C (coreboot). In our opinion long term maintenance of coreboot code base should be simpler. That potentially means faster integration and bugs resolution. There is also huge potential in marketing. coreboot already cover 10% of laptop, notebook and workstation market - that number growing every year. coreboot inherit LinuxBIOS legacy and is well recognized brand with healthy open source community.

We are sure it will bring new interesting use cases and help OpenPOWER ecosystem to grow.
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MauryG5

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Re: HostBoot VS CoreBoot
« Reply #2 on: August 31, 2021, 03:57:16 am »
Hi Pietrushnic, of nothing, I have seen the excellent work done up to here and I have tried to highlight it. Surely there is room for improvement and stabilization of the whole but for the future I think it is an excellent alternative to HostBoot. Instead, what I would like to understand better is: the first start that shows the video, what we see in this case on the monitor, is really what you do when you turn on the system from the power supply and start the led sequences of the BMC ? Because that as we know is another of the current weaknesses of our machines. Being that they have to start the BMC first, it takes some time to put the computer in the condition to be able to turn on ... I would like to understand if what I see on the video as the first start corresponds to what we normally see only through the LEDs ...

pietrushnic

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Re: HostBoot VS CoreBoot
« Reply #3 on: August 31, 2021, 05:27:57 pm »
I asked our Firmware Engineers to address the question.

Meanwhile I think it is worth to link here what was posted on other medium about hostboot vs coreboot. Some interesting discussion by MauryG5 on Twitter: https://twitter.com/g5_maury/status/1432333330163376135
Until we will reach reasonable critical mass with education about hostboot vs coreboot we should inform each other about various threads related to OpenPOWER firmware.
Founder and Chief Executive Officer @ 3mdeb
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twitter | github | linkedin