Endeavours with Minix 3 and SMP

Running Minix 3 in Oracle VirtualBox is pretty straight forward. Running the development version of Minix 3 is also simple. Download and install the current release candidate, e.g. minix_R3.4.0rc4-72e11e2.iso.bz2.

Next, we should grab the source code and rebuild the system:

pkgin up
pkgin_sets # answer y to each question
cd /usr
git clone git://git.minix3.org/minix src
cd src
make build 2>&1 | tee -a make-build-20170213.txt

On my home computer this took 35-40 minutes, and on my desktop computer at work this took 55 minutes.

Reboot the VM to take advantage of the newly installed system.

shutdown -r now Upgrading to the latest Minix 3-CURRENT.; exit

With our new system up & running, we should try building a system with SMP support enabled. I followed the “old” instructions.

cd /usr/src
export CONFIG_SMP=y
export CONFIG_MAX_CPUS=4
make build 2>&1 | tee -a make-build-SMP-20170213.txt

After a while the compiler complained about whatever bitchunk_t means while compiling minix/lib/libsys/rmib.c. See line 17 of minix/include/minix/bitmap.h.

I started looking around the source tree for clues. After many false attempts, I patched minix/include/minix/drivers.h as follows:

diff --git a/minix/include/minix/drivers.h b/minix/include/minix/drivers.h
index da94fef..80e381c 100644
--- a/minix/include/minix/drivers.h
+++ b/minix/include/minix/drivers.h
@@ -9,6 +9,9 @@
 #define _NETBSD_SOURCE 1       /* tell headers to include MINIX stuff */
 #define _SYSTEM                1       /* get negative error number in <errno.h> */

+#include <sys/types.h>
+#include <limits.h>
+
 /* The following are so basic, all the *.c files get them automatically. */
 #include <minix/config.h>      /* MUST be first */
 #include <minix/bitmap.h>

Rerun the build and cross your fingers:

make build 2>&1 | tee -a make-build-SMP-20170213.txt

The build finally went well, but the subsequent restart failed miserably, the VM hung itself.

Reset the VM, select the previous non-SMP build from the boot menu. Adjust the /boot/minix_latest symlink to point to the non-SMP build and be content with that.

Come back again later and see if anything has changed.

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