8. Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

8.1. PTXdist does not support to generate some files in a way I need them. What can I do?


Everything PTXdist builds is controlled by “package rule files”, which in fact are Makefiles (rules/*.make). If you modify such a file you can change its behaviour in a way you need. It is generally not a good idea to modify the generic package rule files installed by PTXdist, but it is always possible to copy one of them over into the rules/ directory of your project. Package rule files in the project will precede global rule files with the same name.

Read the section PTXdist Developer’s Manual in the Developer’s Manual to get more information.

8.2. How can I stop PTXdist to build in parallel?


My build fails, but I cannot detect the correct position due to parallel building.


Force PTXdist to stop building in parallel which looks somehow like:

$ ptxdist -j1 go

8.3. I get errors like “unterminated call to function ‘call’: missing ‘)’”


I made my own rule file and now I get error messages like:

my_project/rules/test.make:30: *** unterminated call to function `call': missing `)'.  Stop.

But line 30 only contains @$(call targetinfo, $@) and it seems all right. What does it mean?


Yes, this error message is confusing. But it usually only means that you should check the following (!) lines for missing backslashes (line continuation).

8.4. I got a message similar to “package <name> is empty. not generating.” What does it mean?


The ipkg tool was advised to generate a new ipkg archive, but the folder was empty. Sometimes this is just a typo in the package name when the install_copy macro was called. Ensure all these macros are using the same package name. Or did you disable a menu entry and now nothing is installed?

8.5. How do I download all required packages at once?


Run this command prior the build:

$ ptxdist make get

This starts to download all required packages in one run. It does nothing if the archives are already present in the source path. Run ptxdist setup first to set up the desired source folder.

8.6. I want to backup all source archives for my BSP


I want to backup the source archives my PTXdist project relies on. How can I find out what packages my project requires to build?


First build your PTXdist project completely and then run the following command:

$ ptxdist export_src <archive directory>

It copies all archives from where are your source archives stored to the path <archive directory> which can be on your backup media.

8.7. OSELAS toolchain fails to start due to missing libraries


To avoid building the OSELAS toolchain on each development host, I copied it to another machine. But on this machine I cannot build any BSP with this toolchain correctly. All applications on the target are failing to start due to missing libraries.


This happens when the toolchain was copied without regard to retaining symlinks. There are archive programs around that convert links into real files. When you are using such programs to create a toolchain archive this toolchain will be broken after extracting it again.

Solution: Use archive programs that retain symlinks as they are (tar for example). Here is an example of a broken toolchain:

$ ll `find . -name "libcrypt*"`
-rwxr-xr-x 1 mkl ptx 55K 2007-07-25 14:54 ./lib/libcrypt-2.5.so*
-rwxr-xr-x 1 mkl ptx 55K 2007-07-25 14:54 ./lib/libcrypt.so.1*
-rw-r--r-- 1 mkl ptx 63K 2007-07-25 14:54 ./usr/lib/libcrypt.a
-rw-r--r-- 1 mkl ptx 64K 2007-07-25 14:54 ./usr/lib/libcrypt_p.a
-rwxr-xr-x 1 mkl ptx 55K 2007-07-25 14:54 ./usr/lib/libcrypt.so*

And in contrast, this one is intact:

$ ll `find . -name "libcrypt*"`
-rwxr-xr-x 1 mkl ptx 55K 2007-11-03 13:30 ./lib/libcrypt-2.5.so*
lrwxrwxrwx 1 mkl ptx  15 2008-02-20 14:52 ./lib/libcrypt.so.1 -> libcrypt-2.5.so*
-rw-r--r-- 1 mkl ptx 63K 2007-11-03 13:30 ./usr/lib/libcrypt.a
-rw-r--r-- 1 mkl ptx 64K 2007-11-03 13:30 ./usr/lib/libcrypt_p.a
lrwxrwxrwx 1 mkl ptx  23 2008-02-20 14:52 ./usr/lib/libcrypt.so -> ../../lib/libcrypt.so.1*

8.8. PTXdist does not find my own sources: “Unknown format, cannot extract”


I followed the instructions how to integrate my own plain source project into PTXdist. But when I try to build it, I get:

extract: archive=/path/to/my/sources
extract: dest=/path/to/my/project/build-target
Unknown format, cannot extract!

But the path exists!


PTXdist interprets a file:// (two slashes) in the URL as a project related relative path. So it searches only in the current project for the given path. Only file:/// (three slashes) will force PTXdist to use the path as an absolute one. This means: file://bla/blub will be used as ./bla/blub and file:///friesel/frasel as /friesel/frasel.

8.9. Using more than one kernel version per BSP


I want to use more than one kernel revision in my BSP. How can I avoid maintaining one platformconfig per kernel?


One solution could be to include the kernel revision into the name of the kernel config file. Instead of the default kernelconfig name you could use kernelconfig-<revision> instead. In ptxdist menuconfig platform under Linux kernel → patching & configuration, change the entry kernel config file to something like kernelconfig-$PTXCONF_KERNEL_VERSION.

8.10. Using Java packages


I’m trying to use a Java based package in PTXdist. But compiling fails badly. Does it ever work at Pengutronix?


Some Java packages only build correctly when an original Oracle Java SDK is used on the host. Run ptxdist setup and point the Java SDK menu entry to the installation path of your Oracle Java SDK.

8.11. I get the error “cannot run ‘/etc/init.d/rcS’: No such file or directory”


I made a new project and everything seems fine. But when I start my target with the root filesystem generated by PTXdist, it fails with:

cannot run '/etc/init.d/rcS': No such file or directory

The error message is confusing. But this script needs /bin/sh to run. Most of the time this message occurs when /bin/sh does not exists. Did you enable it in your busybox configuration?

8.12. I get the error “ptxdist: archives: command not found”


I have set a path for my source archives in ptxdist setup. But whenever I run PTXdist now it fails with the following error message:

/usr/local/bin/ptxdist: archives: command not found

This happens if your source download path contains whitespace, e.g $HOME/source archives. Handling directory or filenames with whitespaces in applications isn’t trivial and also PTXdist suffers all over the place from this issue. The only solution is to avoid whitespace in paths and filenames.

8.13. I have adapted my own rule file’s targetinstall stage, but PTXdist does not install the files


Check if the closing @$(call install_finish, [...]) is present at the end of the targetinstall stage. If not, PTXdist will not complete this stage.