Haiku on ARM architecture & emerging markets

I was wondering if there is any plan to progress on the haiku port to ARM architecture considering that Raspberry Pi is sold for $25.
I see it as a fantastic opportunity to bring a fast and modern OS on an inexpensive platform for emerging markets.
Perhaps it is possible to get funding too to bring computing in many areas of the world and could be disruptive in our computing world…

There has been a lot of work on an ARM port, unfortunatly it is still a work in progress, and we lack manpower to focus much on ARM. If you are a developer with interest in ARM Haiku could really use your help. Perhaps it would be a good GSoC project if we are accepted this year.

How exactly does one get involved in that process? I have an rPi and a lot of downtime at work, I’d be happy to assist in such a project, but I’m not sure how to get started.

First thing is to try to compile Haiku for ARM: http://www.haiku-os.org/guides/building/compiling-arm
and reading the blog posts about ARM: http://www.haiku-os.org/tags/arm
Then it is hard work debugging and improving code until it works…

Extra links:


You could try the Haiku mailing list or asking for Alexander von Gluck if you need more info.

The era of the stand alone PC, reigning as the king of personal computing, is over. This news is heralded by the recent acquistion of Nokia’s mobile division by Microsoft. Who’d ever have thought that?! The PC will live on for quite a few years, but will be forevermore shrinking as time goes by. Now half of all “personal computing” is being done on smart phones. Probably not business spreadsheets, mind you - but a whole lotta internet type stuff. This is sad, in a way, because smart phone users tend to be button pushing appliance operators, who don’t know a bit from a byte, and don’t care. I guess the new world of a high tech using (but at the same time - high-tech ignorant) populace is upon us.

So, ARM is the emerging market. PC is the dying one. I like the truly free operating systems, aka FreeBSD, Minix3, Haiku-OS, etc. I consider Linux and OS/X to be majorly unfree. Yet - it’s not a trivial task to find a computing platform in the emerging mobile market that utilizes any of the truly free operating systems. There are ARM ports in progress, for FreeBSD, Haiku, and Minix3. None of them could be used currently as a stable platform for the day-to-day stuff. I see the TI Beaglebone as a more capable project board than the Raspberry PI. Now they’ve lowered the price on the Bbone black to $45. Sweet. Maybe I’ll pick one up, and see if I can contribute. Thanks for the nice links to the Haiku ARM stuff. We all can’t sit around and wait for someone else to do it. That “someone else” guy is already too busy!

In the meantime, unfortunately, something like the Acer Iconia (Win8) seems to be the short term tablet solution (ugh)…

Three problems with the above statements:

  1. PC stands for Personal Computer, not Intel computer. An Acorn is still a PC even while the CPU is an ARM one.

  2. Intel and to a lesser degree AMD are also working to develop designs that are as low powered as ARM CPUs, and ARM designs are getting more complex at the same time - their power demands are not dropping as the same rate as Intel’s planned designs.

  3. Wait till those phone users start getting older, 20 years old people mostly can read the smaller screen fine, 60-70+ generally will need larger screens.

The only problem I have with the present Intel/AMD tablets are the prices. For what you are getting you are paying too much. The Aspire One I am typing this message on has all the specs of the Acer Iconia but for the touch screen and orientation sensor and it costed $229.00 to buy. The Acer Iconia is for sale at $449.00, I am sure the touch screen does not account for the difference. That would mean it cost about $100 for the manufacturer.


You probably caught me on an over-generalization. I suppose Intel shouldn’t be counted out of the race just yet. True. They’ve made inroads lately, and maybe they can make it a two horse race.

I meant to use the acronym “PC” more in terms of the form factor. I really like the netbook I’m using (intel atom with FreeBSD and Haiku). It’s just the right size for someone whose eyes are only a couple years younger than yours. But - I’m a boating aficionado, and am looking for a device (somewhat) impervious to salt water. The netbook probably wouldn’t last very long, with all its little openings and keyboard, etc. Yes - the Iconia’s list price is a little scary. I’ve seen some discounts at walmart (in the 300s). That’s still a little rich it seems, when all the little Android boxes are going for a hundred bucks. :slight_smile:

It is not the price, rather it is what hardware you get for the price.

I was looking at getting an I7 desktop for about $900.00, cost is not the problem, lack of hardware features for the price is my problem.

[quote=Earl Colby Pottinger]It is not the price, rather it is what hardware you get for the price.

I was looking at getting an I7 desktop for about $900.00, cost is not the problem, lack of hardware features for the price is my problem.[/quote]

Apple? Yes, but they’re pretty, aren’t they? Like it is for you, price is a large part of my calculation for selecting the next device, but for my happiness I have to be able to (reasonably) develop on the platform, for my own apps at least, and not do any jailbreaking. (Did you know they’ve put five years of state sponsored snail mail on the offense in the states? The developer programs are bizarre, with the continual updating of the app identifier certs every two months. How do they get away with it? For much longer?

I think they have a plan on that one. But it still depends i think also. increase soundcloud plays