#4272 assigned project

BSP Executable Conversion

Reported by: Chris Johns Owned by: Chris Johns
Priority: normal Milestone: Indefinite
Component: bsps Version:
Severity: normal Keywords: SoC, BSP, small
Cc: Blocked By:

Description (last modified by Gedare Bloom)

BSP Executable Conversion


  1. BSP Executable Conversion
    1. Mentors
    2. Students
    3. Status
  2. Introduction
  3. Project
    1. Goal
    2. Prerequisite
    3. Difficulty
    4. Resources
  4. Tasks
    1. Tools
  5. Acknowledgements
  6. References


Chris Johns, Joel Sherrill




Looking for students.


This is an entry level programming project that requires some python and shell script programming knowledge combined with good communications skills. Some knowledge of the low level executable formats such as ELF and mkimage is recommended.

RTEMS is organized as architectures and each architecture can have a number of Board Support Packages (BSP). An architecture is a family of processors such as ARM, X86, PowerPC and more. A BSP is a physical board with a processor from the architecture on it plus memory and input and output devices. RTEMS is built for a BSP and the executables created are specific to only that BSP's board.

The board will have a boot loader that takes the RTEMS executable, loads it into memory and starts it executing. The boot loader and the format it uses is specific to each BSP. This project is about capturing the commands and logic needed to convert the RTEMS executable format to the BSP boot loader format.

RTEMS 4.11 and earlier captured some of the conversions in the RTEMS build system. These commands were called the post-link processing. The commands were not generally available for all users as it required a user use the RTEMS specific build system environment. The objective of this project is to make the conversions available via a single uniform command.



The project is to:

  • Design a suitable command line command called rtems-exe-convert in Python that is installed when RTEMS is installed. The command is required to accept a suitable set of user options and then detect a BSP's installed script or command and execute it.
  • Convert all post-link commands in RTEMS 4.11 and RTEMS 5 into a per BSP command called bsp-exe-convert. This will create a script per BSP that supported post-link conversion support. This script or command is installed in the BSP area and will have the same name. These commands are held in the rtems.git repo under each BSP and installed when the BSP is installed.
  • Add support for any BSP that needs an executable converter and does not have one.
  • Update the BSP documentation in the User Manual about the BSP including documenting the executable conversion command.


  • Knowledge of Python Programming language and the Unix shell command.
  • Knowledge of the ELF file format.
  • Knowledge of building RTEMS tools and BSPs using the waf build system.
  • Knowledge of YAML format.
  • Knowledge of the rtems.git BSP structure and the BSPs present.


This is a small (175-hour) project of medium difficulty.


  • Current RTEMS developers.
  • Use existing build system.


The following are the tasks:




Joel, he told us all a while go we need a script per BSP to perform the conversion.


  • RTEMS 4.11 source tree

Change History (3)

comment:1 Changed on 04/09/21 at 02:00:27 by Chris Johns

Description: modified (diff)

comment:2 Changed on 02/03/22 at 19:32:20 by Gedare Bloom

Keywords: small added

comment:3 Changed on 02/25/22 at 18:24:43 by Gedare Bloom

Description: modified (diff)
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