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Re: [PATCH 0/3] gdbstub: add support for switchable endianness

From: Changbin Du
Subject: Re: [PATCH 0/3] gdbstub: add support for switchable endianness
Date: Tue, 24 Aug 2021 07:05:35 +0800

On Mon, Aug 23, 2021 at 04:30:05PM +0100, Peter Maydell wrote:
> On Mon, 23 Aug 2021 at 16:21, Philippe Mathieu-Daudé <philmd@redhat.com> 
> wrote:
> >
> > On 8/23/21 4:20 PM, Changbin Du wrote:
> > > To resolve the issue to debug switchable targets, this serias introduces
> > > basic infrastructure for gdbstub and enable support for ARM and RISC-V
> > > targets.
> > >
> > > For example, now there is no problem to debug an big-enadian aarch64 
> > > target
> > > on x86 host.
> > >
> > >   $ qemu-system-aarch64 -gdb tcp::1234,endianness=big ...
> >
> > I don't understand why you need all that.
> > Maybe you aren't using gdb-multiarch?
> >
> > You can install it or start it via QEMU Debian Docker image:
> >
> > $ docker run -it --rm -v /tmp:/tmp -u $UID --network=host \
> >   registry.gitlab.com/qemu-project/qemu/qemu/debian10 \
> >   gdb-multiarch -q \
> >     --ex 'set architecture aarch64' \
> >     --ex 'set endian big'
> > The target architecture is assumed to be aarch64
> > The target is assumed to be big endian
> > (gdb) target remote
> I don't think that will help, because an AArch64 CPU (at least
> in the boards we model) will always start up in little-endian,
> and our gdbstub will always transfer register data etc in
> little-endian order, because gdb cannot cope with a target that
> isn't always the same endianness. Fixing this requires gdb
Yes, that's the problem.

> changes to be more capable of handling dynamic target changes
> (this would also help with eg debugging across 32<->64 bit switches);
> as I understand it that gdb work would be pretty significant,
> and at least for aarch64 pretty much nobody cares about
> big-endian, so nobody's got round to doing it yet.
Mostly we do not care dynamic target changes because nearly all OS will setup
endianness mode by its first instruction. And dynamic changes for gdb is hard
since the byte order of debugging info in elf is fixed. And currently the GDB
remote protocol does not support querying endianness info from remote.

So usually we needn't change byte order during a debug session, but we just want
the qemu gdbstub can send data in and handle data it received in right byte 
This patch does this work with the help of users via the option 'endianness='.

> Our target/ppc/gdbstub.c code takes a different tack: it
> always sends register data in the same order the CPU is
> currently in, which has a different set of cases when it
> goes wrong.
Yes, I tried to do this before. But as I said above GDB unable to handle dynamic
target changing. Maybe we can take this way as 'endianness=default'? Anyway,
this requires each target provides a interface to determine the current byte

> thanks
> -- PMM

Changbin Du

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