Project Log: Random GP2X hacking

Thursday, December 01, 2005

GP2X Linux - 1st Source Release

I guess it had to happen sometime.

I am very pleased to relay the fact that DignSys (GamePark Holdings Linux Sub-Contractor) have released the source code to the U-Boot boot loader and Linux kernel used on the GP2X on there web site.

This is the 1st code release and efforts are on-going to resolve any outstanding aspects surrounding code used on the GP2X. I will be checking of the status of this code and fitness to compile, completeness against releases etc. over the next few days, any feedback in that area is greatly appreciated.

DignSys have stated that they will update this code periodically to ensure it is kept inline with the release of binaries on the console.

The source code can be found on DignSys English website under

Embedded Linux Solution > MagicEyes MMSP2.

A direct link is available here.

Please only download this code if you need it, it would seem slightly unfair to kill the DignSys website with unnecessary downloads and I understand there website is not on the fastest of links.

This code is mirrored via SourceForge/Open2x's CVS.

If you wish to view bits of the code using a browser click here.

To get the code from CVS check out the "gph" (all) or "linux-gp2x" (kernel), "u-boot-gp2x" (boot loader) modules.

The Open2x project will endevour to keep the modules in step with the DignSys/GPH kernel releases.

On a personal note thank you to everybody who has helped in the process of beginning to resolve this matter (, GBAX.Com, #GP32Dev and Mr Pearlmutter especially) and thank you to GamePark Holdings and DignSys for making efforts to ensure compliance in this area.

I only hope this co-operation will continue and shortly extend to any GPL code used in user-space applications and updates to this base code.

John Willis


  • It's still illegal, they must release the source code of all version, not only the latest. See the GPL license and explain to them better...

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3:22 PM  

  • Your CVS directory of the Dignsys' source is empty!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3:26 PM  

  • "Anonymous said... It's still illegal, they must release the source code of all version, not only the latest. See the GPL license and explain to them better..."

    Please DO NOT tell me to read the GPL, especially as you do not seem to have a complete understanding yourself. If you do not like my methods or results then please fell free to invest your own time and effort in resolving maters. Do not insult me from the veil of an anonymous comment.

    This is being undertaken in my own time for absolutely no gain and I even state in the BLOG entry

    "I only hope this co-operation will continue and shortly extend to any GPL code used in user-space applications and updates to this base code."

    I believe that paragraph clearly sums up that there is still work to be done in this area and this is not a complete resolution.

    “Anonymous said... Your CVS directory of the Dignsys' source is empty!”

    Sorry, SourceForge seems a little slow mirroring there developer CVS system with the public system today. Try again later.

    John Willis

    By Blogger DJWillis, at 3:43 PM  

  • Argh ! Missing NET2272 driver...

    So no way for ethernet over usb ?

    Anyway , thanx for your work !

    By Anonymous Cts/Nlc, at 1:17 AM  

  • I think serial-over-USB would work better than Ethernet. It would certainly involve adding a lot less to the kernel.

    But, yeah, that won't happen until we can see the USB-Gadget code, as we'd have to match the ABI..

    By Anonymous Kalthare, at 3:20 AM  

  • Open2X project is DEAD? It seems that!

    Open2X project seems dead, the page must be done like page (using trac et all). Sourceforge is too crap for a project like this...

    If you want help, request it. I think GP2X page is very redundant, better do a better page for Open2X instead trying to maintain both pages unsucessfully...

    Do you want help? Request it, people will help, maybe me with in another anonymous manner ;)

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 5:39 PM  

  • I'm a potential buyer of the GP2X; I came across this after following links from, via the dev wiki. I was extremely excited by the prospects of buying a really hackable, open-source handheld, until I heard about these kernel issues.

    This stuff about the vendor refusing to release the hardware driver code added to the linux kernel is *extremely* bad news to me.

    I suspect they're still thinking in the old proprietary mindset -- they are missing the point that many of us user/developers are buying it *for* the open-source hackability aspect! If I wanted a closed-source, proprietary handset to play games on, I'd buy a Gameboy. The selling point for this hardware is its hackability.

    To explain another benefit of open-source *to them*: it's also free software development! For example, I was considering buying a GP2X, and porting the kernel driver for my USB wifi adapter. It now appears likely that this will be impossible, if the source is unavailable, hence reducing value to *everyone*.

    All in all, it may be a deal-breaker for me. As I said, I'd be buying this for hackability, and if that's not there, I'll buy a PSP or even Nokia 770 instead. I strongly hope they reconsider, and start taking their responsibilities under the GPL seriously -- they'll be gaining at least one customer...

    (ps: to anonymous: your reading of the GPL is incorrect. periodic tarballs "thrown over the wall" are indeed fine per the GPL. how do you think the GPL worked in the days before CVS?)

    By Blogger Justin Mason, at 6:40 PM  

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