Implement RTEMS for Altera NIOS2 processor

Joel Sherrill joel.sherrill at
Thu Feb 4 14:38:44 UTC 2010

On 02/04/2010 01:47 AM, Michal Simek wrote:
> Joel Sherrill wrote:
>> I am cc'ing the user's list because there are others
>> there who can share.
>> (1) RTEMS tools must be built for RTEMS.  RTEMS has
>> a special configuration of the newlib C library and other
>> features enabled in the tools that will not be there
>> with nios2-elf.
> What features? Just give me any label or whatever.
GNU tools are configured for a target triple
CPU-VENDOR-OS.  Ignore the VENDOR.  Just
because the CPU is the same does not mean
that all OSes have the same tools.  The code
generator is very shared.  But for example,
i386-elf, i386-linux, i386-macos, i386-rtems,
and i386-mingw are VERY VERY different.
Different C libraries, object formats, etc.

In the case of RTEMS, you are enabling code
which integrated the threading and filesystem
support in newlib with RTEMS.  You are also
turning on threading safety support in the
compiler's run-time libraries.  That's at a minimum.

This ignores the differences between whatever probably
old tools they are basing their toolset on and the
late model versions we use.  I know the last time I tried,
I had to hack around a missing feature in their binutils
that impacted a shared Makefile.
>> (2) AFAIK Altera has not done their part in the free software
>> process in relation to the NIOS2 tool chain.  They have NOT
>> submitted their patches to the FSF projects for inclusion.
>> The RTEMS Project does not provide pre-built tools based
>> upon unsubmitted ports.
>> (3) You can build your own toolchain using the Altera
>> provided patches combined with RTEMS patches.  I did
>> this long ago and it worked.  If they have not updated
>> their tool versions in a long time, then you may have issues
>> with RTEMS using recent FSF releases while Altera is
>> using older tools.
> Do you have any description of your successful attempt?
I have no success with Altera but I pushed on
Lattice and the tool developer for the Micro32 and
it is now in the main FSF tree.

> Thanks,
> Michal
>> If you care at all about free tools on the Altera NIOS2,
>> you need to make that known to Altera.  The ball is
>> in their court to do the right thing. :)
>> --joel
>> On 02/03/2010 09:47 AM, TKV (Thuc Vu) wrote:
>>> Hello Joel,
>>> I am trying to implement RTEMS OS in our custom NIOS2 hardware.
>>> We use Windows XP as our development host. I have tried building the
>>> and all of its components using MSYS, Cygwin, MinGW and Altera Nios2
>>> IDE environment without any success.
>>> Please let me know if you can think of any reasons why this would be
>>> such a difficult hurdle….
>>> Thank you for your time.
>>> Regards,
>>> */Thuc Vu/*
>>> */Panduit Corporation/*
>>> */Thuc.Vu at<mailto:Thuc.Vu at>/*
>>> LearnAboutUPI-icons-notrademrks<>
>>> Panduit-logo-w-bp-notrademrks<>

Joel Sherrill, Ph.D.             Director of Research&  Development
joel.sherrill at        On-Line Applications Research
Ask me about RTEMS: a free RTOS  Huntsville AL 35805
    Support Available             (256) 722-9985

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