How to compile ONLY a kernel

  • While trying to build the whole system for my N7, I'm looking for a way of ONLY building a kernel, preferably outside of the whole gigantic source tree checked out by repo.

    However, I think I'm stuck with two (hopefully) simple questions:

    • how to set the kernel config file
    • how to do the cross compilation

    What I've tried so far:

    • clone the kernel I want to try ( git://, branch mako-kernel)
    • copy the config I want to use into .config
    • but when I try to run make it will always insist on going through an endless series of questions what to configure and how to update the config instead of just using it
    • looking at this: I have now copied my config into arch/arm/configs/myconfig_defconfig
    • when I now run make ARCH=arm myconfig_defconfig it says it copied the config, OK
    • However afterwards I run make ARCH=arm it fails quickly (error below). I think this is because I'm using the wrong compiler. Which would make sense because I'm on my laptop and I guess I need an arm crosscompiler, but I don't know how to do this.
      CHK     include/linux/version.h
      CHK     include/generated/utsrelease.h
    make[1]: 'include/generated/mach-types.h' is up to date.
      CC      kernel/bounds.s
    gcc: error: unrecognized argument in option ‘-mabi=aapcs-linux’
    gcc: note: valid arguments to ‘-mabi=’ are: ms sysv
    gcc: error: unrecognized command line option ‘-mlittle-endian’
    gcc: error: unrecognized command line option ‘-mapcs’
    gcc: error: unrecognized command line option ‘-mno-sched-prolog’
    gcc: error: unrecognized command line option ‘-mno-thumb-interwork’
    /media/peter/share2/data/freedreno/kernel-msm/./Kbuild:35: recipe for target 'kernel/bounds.s' failed

    Can someone help me? Am I just approaching this the wrong way?

  • I think I figured it out - the compiler is happily chugging along - let's see.

    What I did was: Following this: , I did

    sudo apt install gcc-arm-linux-gnueabihf 
    export CROSS_COMPILE=arm-linux-gnueabihf-
    export CC=/usr/bin/arm-linux-gnueabihf-gcc
    export $(dpkg-architecture -aarmhf)
    make clean
    make ARCH=arm myconfig_defconfig
    make ARCH=arm CROSS_COMPILE=/usr/bin/arm-linux-gnueabihf- 

    That got me one step further, but then make was complaining about something with gcc 5, so I assume that I was using a too new compiler version, so I installed 4.8. Afterwards it seemed as if still the wrong compiler was picked up at some steps, so I created a couple of symlinks to make sure it uses the right one:

    sudo apt install gcc-4.8-arm-linux-gnueabihf
    mkdir ~/bin-gcc-4.8
    cd ~/bin-gcc-4.8
    ln -s /usr/bin/arm-linux-gnueabihf-gcc-4.8 .
    ln -s arm-linux-gnueabihf-gcc-4.8 arm-linux-gnueabihf-gcc
    ln -s /usr/bin/arm-linux-gnueabihf-ld .
    ln -s /usr/bin/arm-linux-gnueabihf-ar .
    export PATH=~/bin-gcc-4.8:$PATH
    export CC=/usr/bin/arm-linux-gnueabihf-gcc-4.8
    export CROSS_COMPILE=arm-linux-gnueabihf-
    export $(dpkg-architecture -aarmhf)
    make clean
    make ARCH=arm myconfig_defconfig
    make ARCH=arm CROSS_COMPILE=~/bin-gcc-4.8/arm-linux-gnueabihf- 

    Maybe there are more straight forward ways to achieve this ... Whatever, it seems to work

  • Yes, that is exactly how you do it. Generally the Android build system will use its own customized versions of gcc automagically, so you need to specify any alternatives yourself in a single build.

    I was able to use update-alternatives to swap out my compilers once upon a time, though I don't recommend that unless you're building in a container.

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