Gentoo BootSplash for ARM FrameBuffers

With Gentoo now running on several mobile devices, including the OpenMoko devices, HTC Wizard, and one that I'm still unable to mention due to NDA, I thought that it would be advantageous to be able to package splashutils for ARM devices in order to make the Gentoo boot process as visually appealing as others (notably Angstrom).

One major blocker in that process was being able to (cross-)compile klibc for ARM devices. Although that has been working well for a couple of years already, klibc was unavailable for Gentoo / ARM without an arm keyword. So I had to edit the klibc ebuild considerably and make it cross-compile friendly. In the process I added a couple of useful features and bug-fixes that were already in OpenEmbedded, like wc, losetup, etc. You can see the efforts of my klibc ebuild at Gentoo's Bugzilla under bug #284957. It's currently working without any issues. Incidentally, the ebuild configures for the ARM EABI if it's applicable.

Once that was ready to go, I contacted Spock and he assured me that his splashutils would work for generic framebuffers, and not just vesa or vga style devices. Then, it was just a matter of emerge-ing splashutils, and creating a theme.

I chose to modify the natural_gentoo theme because it was relatively clean-looking and recent. There are definitely hundreds of themes to choose from though. Here are the modified version for resolutions 240x320 (silent), 240x320 (verbose), 320x240 (silent), and 320x240 (verbose). My 240x320.cfg file is available here and a feature request has been added at Gentoo's Bugzilla under bug #285088.


Note: Ned Ludd and Angelo from #gentoo-embedded had apparently done this a year ago, but I guess they hadn't submitted it to the main portage tree. I was unaware of their efforts unfortunately, and maybe could have spared myself some time if I would have known about it beforehand.

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