From - Wed Aug 25 12:01:39 1999
From: Andrew Cagney 
Newsgroups: cygnus.gdb
Subject: FAQ? How do I multi-arch my target?
Date: Mon, 07 Jun 1999 13:58:22 +1000
Organization: Cygnus Solutions
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Here is the next in a set of notes about multi-arch - getting GDB to support architectural variants (and orthogonal architectures):

In this note I'll give some suggestions for how the maintainer of a given target should go about converting things so that they use the multi-arch framework.

Broadly there are two strategies:

  1. Convert everything at once.
  2. Incrementally convert/clean/commit your targets changes.

I'd recommend the second strategy using the following as guidelines for what to attack where.


Step 0 is always establish that control - build / test your target as it currently stands. While at it. it wouldn't hurt to fix a few bugs :-)

With the control established and tested freeze it.

Suggested conversion sequence:


These two macro's have been deprecated.

FRAME_FIND_SAVED_REGS was replaced by FRAME_INIT_SAVED_REGS. EXTRA_FRAME_INFO has been deleted. For examples of how to re-do the code see the d10v and the mn10300.


The REGISTER_NAMES initialization string has been deprecated.

Instead there is a per architecture function. See d10v-tdep.c for a very simple implementation.


The CALL_DUMMY initialization string has been deprecated.

Incrementally convert all code and function macro's to proper C functions:

I've already converted a number of these. However, for each target there are plenty more. Ensure that each function being created maintains name-space purity (ex d10v_, mips_...).

Create your XXX-tdep.c:XXX_gdbarch_init() function:

In theory, this function only needs the following:

static struct gdbarch *
d10v_gdbarch_init (info, arches)
     struct gdbarch_info info;
     struct gdbarch_list *arches;
  struct gdbarch *gdbarch;
  /* there is only one d10v architecture */
  if (arches != NULL)
    return arches->gdbarch;
  gdbarch = gdbarch_alloc (&info, NULL);
  return gdbarch;

In truth, as noted below, you may need to initialize several predicate macros.

Check for any new predicate macros (*_P):

Glance through gdbarch.h, looking for any predicate macro's that your target doesn't define. For each of these either add a definition to your tm-XXX.h file or add a line to your XXX_gdbarch_init() function providing an initial value.

Please let me know which macro's you identify.

Update XXX-tdep.c:_initialize_XXX() and register your architecture.


    register_gdbarch_init (bfd_arch_d10v, d10v_gdbarch_init);

Define GDB_MULTI_ARCH 1 in your tm-*.h file:

This is probably the most difficult stage.


#define GDB_MULTI_ARCH 1

to the top of your tm-XXX.h file. Rebuild and then run GDB vis:

(gdb) set archdebug 1
(gdb) file x-y-z

If all goes well, gdb will report the current value of all the architecture dependent macro's. At this stage must are still being taken from hardwired definitions in your tm-XXX.h file. Failing that, an internal error message reporting an uninitialised architecture vector member will be reported.

Test it. There will most likely be problems stemming from the introduction of new predicate macro's that test for target features. Please let me know of any problem macro's you find.

Slowly convert your target macro's:

See d10v-tdep.c/config/d10v/tm-d10v.h.

Expand the XXX_gdbarch_init() function so that it fully populates the architecture vector. As you convert each macro, wrap it in #if !GDB_MULTI_ARCH / #endif so that it is possible to revert the code back to pre-multi-arch days.

If you find a macro missing from the architecture vector, let me know and I'll add it. At present the architecture vector only contains the minimum set of macro's to get a small set of targets up and running.

Raise GDB_MULTI_ARCH to 2:

This final step enables a string of checks in gdbarch() that ensure that the target architecture vector was fully initialized.

Keep an eye on gdb@sourceware watching for updates and additions.