I recently had to put a 1GHz Pentium-III "Coppermine" in service. One of
several things, it is for testing my previous LFS-7.10 build. I built all 341
packages in two systems, i686 and x86-64. The i686 version runs fine on my
Core2-Duo systems, but I wanted to check that it runs as advertized in a "real"
i686 with no extra instructions on the side.
In my definition of "general operations" it works well enough, but don't run
Libre-Office. I had patched the kernel up to LTS 4.1.42, and had to rebuild it
for the i810 hardware. Duration: just short of 2 hours!
I call that a "heavy lift". So my question morphed into: when does i686
hardware just lack the horsepower to "run" modern, i.e. kernel-3.x or
kernel-4.x, LFS systems? On what does it make sense to abandon i686? Most
public distros did that some time ago, but obviously I keep lots of old
hardware around with some attempt at functionality. I have a functional 2GHz
Pentium-4 "Northwood" box, so I copied the drive for the Coppermine box and
slipped it in. (The CPU flags include HT, but trying an SMP/HT kernel can't
Compiling LFS-7.10 linux-4.1.42 duration: ~52 minutes.
Other systems on the drive/box:
Compiling LFS-7.7 linux-3.10.107 duration: ~22 minutes.
Compiling LFS-7.2 linux-126.96.36.199 duration: ~18 minutes.
So, as I now work through LFS-8.1, and read the options in building gcc and
other places, it seems to me kernel 4.x-based software has just gotten too
"heavy" for i686 to be a reasonable build.
I leave it up to LFS-devs to decide when to take it out of the book. As much
as I regret it, it's probably about time, so I won't.
p.s. I still hope to get Meltdown/Spectre patches for linux-4.1.x i686 builds.
Rogers' Second Law: "Everything you do communicates."
(I do not personally endorse any additions after this line. TANSTAAFL :-)
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