[Arm-netbook] Side-Topic: Liberating PocketCHIP

John Luke Gibson eaterjolly at gmail.com
Thu May 4 08:04:12 BST 2017

Since it seems like a trivially simple task that for some reason no
one has taken up, I would like to take the opportunity to exercise a
learning experience and simultaneously benefit the community, by
liberating PocketCHIP by deblobbing the source and re-compiling.

Browsing the archives to see if this had been talked about before, I
find it very incredibly humourous I got name dropped on the mailing
list by Parobath:

> Date: Sat, 29 Oct 2016 20:13:10 +0200
> From: Parobalth <parobalth at gmail.com>
> To: arm-netbook at lists.phcomp.co.uk
> Subject: closed-source BootROM and RYF certification
> User-Agent: Mutt/1.5.23 (2014-03-12)
> At the forum of NextThing Chip is a thread about Chip and a
> possible RYF certification. I wrote there that I think that is unlikely
> to happen and linked to https://www.crowdsupply.com/eoma68/micro-desktop/updates/fsf-ryf-background.
> Then someone else mentioned that a closed-source BootROM is used for Chip.
> Another guy with username "eaterjolly" wrote about this BootROM: "The same type of SOC is
> used for the EOMA croud project which is vying for ryf-endorsement quite
> openly [...]"
> You can find the forum thread here:
> https://bbs.nextthing.co/t/ntc-thoughts-on-ryf-endorsement/4490
> Because they use Discourse to power their forum which relies heavily on
> JavaScript I also attach a Pdf version of the forum post.
> I wonder if the mentioned statements are correct and how it relates to
> the RYF certification of the EOMA68-A20 Libre Tea card.
> kind regards
> Paro

Like reading that URL, I was like? didn't I start that thread? then I
re-read the post and noticed I was quoted in the email xD I didn't
participate in the list back then, cause I was afraid my ignorance
would be spurred, of course I know that not to be true in hindsight.
Feels a bit melodramatic being name dropped on a linux mailing list,
usually you only see legends get mentioned by name when they aren't
around xD

Anywhoo, I more or less just wanted to start this thread because I
wanted to know if any one could point out anything that would need be
removed besides the wifi firmware. I searched the sunix-uboot
repository on github for the word blob and got a few interesting hits
for the code in the folder binman:


Particularly in files mentioning the devil:

"# Entry-type module for Intel Chip Microcode binary blob"

I suppose this is just another aspect of mainlining, meant to be
parsed out once it's discovered that there are no such blobs in the
kernel, but personally I'd feel more comfortable with a script
removing these sections of the code altogether.

If I had been actually reading the list digests back when I could have
posted more accurate information in that thread rather than just
guessing. Well, I suppose I can do so now.

How humorous it is though too that I've run into the same 40k file
limit? Small tiny things suggesting the work of the vicissitudes of
fate, much like deja vu in the matrix.

More information about the arm-netbook mailing list