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ARM enablement nearly complete; testing needed


Hey guys,

The armhf enablement of Daily PPA is nearly complete now. The only
remaining items are failed builds of some Switchboard plugs which
should resolve themselves in an hour or two. In all other respects
armhf situation is 1:1 equal to the i386 and amd64 ones. And guess
what it means? Exactly - it's time to test this stuff!

If you happen to be running Ubuntu's armhf port, please take a backup
of your system (just in case), add ppa:elementary-os/daily to your
software sources and install the "pantheon" package (or cherrypick
whatever dependencies of it you prefer). Then check out how apps work
(and if they work at all) and report your findings to this mailing

I don't anticipate any major issues in applications because all Vala
code is translated to C+GLib code and thus is portable by definition.
Also, we're not yet in a position to consider any crashes appearing on
ARM architecture-specific :) I don't code in Vala myself so developers
may correct me on this point further in this thread.
Still, SoCs may have different performance bottlenecks than desktops
do, so please report anything that works unusually slowly.

The situation with Pantheon Shell is more interesting. In theory, Gala
should run on OpenGL ES 2.0 (and OpenGL 1.3 too, which took me by
surprise). However, I'm not aware of anybody actually trying that. So
if you happen to have hardware 3D acceleration on your ARM device,
please test Gala and report your findings. Don't forget to include the
output of "es2_info" command!

Also, it would be nice to be able to retrace Apport crashes submitted
from armhf, so that developers can investigate and fix them. This
requires an armhf-capable machine to run the retracer on. If you have
any resources to spare on an armhf-capable server you run, or know how
to set up ARMv7 emulation on amd64, please contact me.

Kudos to Rico for making the armhf enablement happen!

Sergey "Shnatsel" Davidoff
OS architect @ elementary

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