Appendix E. Installing Linux/m68k on Motorola 68000-Series Systems

by Chris Lawrence, Linux/m68k Documentation Supremo

Linux/m68k is the port of the Linux operating system to the Motorola 680x0 (or m68k) processors. Linux/m68k, the first project to port Linux to a non-Intel processor, was begun in 1993 by Hamish Macdonald and Greg Harp, who ported the kernel to the Amiga. Several Atari users, including Björn Brauel, Roman Hodek, and Andreas Schwab, adapted Hamish’s kernel beginning later that year to run on Atari’s 32-bit ST series of computers.

Since 1996, Linux/m68k has been adapted to run on a number of other systems, including the pre-PowerPC Apple Macintosh line, several models of VMEbus single-board computers from Motorola and BVM Ltd., Apollo Domain workstations, the HP 9000 series and Sun 3 workstations, and NeXT. Most recently, there has been a port to the Q40 and Q60, two new 680x0-based computers that are being manufactured in Europe. A related project, Linux/APUS, has ported Linux/PPC (discussed in Appendix D) to Amigas with PowerPC processor cards; it is very much a hybrid of Linux/m68k and Linux/PPC.

As you can see from the diverse list of systems that Linux/m68k runs on, the challenge facing the m68k port was introducing enough flexibility into the kernel to cope with the variety of possible environments. Many of these abstractions—most notably, Martin Schaller and Geert Uytterhoeven’s framebuffer and console abstractions—have since been incorporated into the ...

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