This page attempts to document running NetBSD/evbarm under the QEMU open source processor emulator. This can be extremely useful for development and testing.


QEMU emulates ARM's Integrator/CP board. You can run NetBSD under it. Older NetBSD had the problem to run under QEMU's emulated Integrator/CP board. Sergio López had created the patch for NetBSD current and had posted to port-arm mailing list in 6 Febrary, 2013.


Preparing QEMU

You can install latest qemu with the following commands. It is assumed that your pkgsrc tree is in /usr/pkgsrc directory.

# cd /usr/pkgsrc/emulators/qemu
# make install

Preparing NetBSD userland and kernel

You can create INTEGRATOR_CP kernel, and kernel/userland tarball with the following commands. It is assumed that your NetBSD src tree is in /usr/src directory.

$ cd /usr/src
$ ./ -U -T /usr/tools/evbearm-el -O /usr/obj/evbearm-el \
  -D /usr/NewWorld/evbearm-el -R /usr/release/evbearm-el \
  -m evbearm release
$ ./ -U -T /usr/tools/evbearm-el -O /usr/obj/evbearm-el \
  -D /usr/NewWorld/evbearm-el -R /usr/release/evbearm-el \
  -m evbearm kernel=INTEGRATOR_CP


INTEGRATOR_CP kernel has no disk drive support. You should setup netboot environment.

Setting up netboot environment

You can use existing NetBSD or other Unix like operating system environment for host netboot. You can also utilize qemu-system-amd64 or qemu-system-i386 to host netboot.

tftp is not needed, kernel is specified in commandline of qemu-system-arm. Only NFS root is needed. In detail see Diskless NetBSD howto's Setting up the NFS server section.

Booting INTEGRATOR_CP kernel

You can boot INTEGRATOR_CP kernel with the following commandline. It is assumed that the host machine uses bge0 to connect to your network.

# ifconfig bridge0 create
# brconfig bridge0 add bge0
# ifconfig bridge0 up
# ifconfig tap0 create
# ifconfig tap0 up
# brconfig bridge0 add tap0
$ cp /usr/obj/evbearm-el/sys/arch/evbarm/compile/INTEGRATOR_CP/netbsd.gz.ub .
$ qemu-system-arm -M integratorcp -cpu arm1136 -m 512m -kernel netbsd.gz.ub -serial stdio -net nic -net tap,fd=3 3<>/dev/tap0

After booted

You will get the following boot messages.

Copyright (c) 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005,
    2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
    The NetBSD Foundation, Inc.  All rights reserved.
Copyright (c) 1982, 1986, 1989, 1991, 1993
    The Regents of the University of California.  All rights reserved.

NetBSD 6.99.28 (INTEGRATOR_CP) #0: Sat Jan 11 23:47:15 UTC 2014
total memory = 255 MB
avail memory = 246 MB
sysctl_createv: sysctl_create(machine_arch) returned 17
timecounter: Timecounters tick every 10.000 msec
mainbus0 (root)
cpu0 at mainbus0 core 0: ARM1136J-S r1p3 (ARM11J V6J core)
cpu0: DC enabled IC enabled WB disabled EABT
cpu0: isar: [0]=0x140011 [1]=0x12002111 [2]=0x11231111 [3]=0x1102131, [4]=0x141, [5]=0
cpu0: mmfr: [0]=0x1130003 [1]=0x10030302 [2]=0x1222110 [3]=0
cpu0: pfr: [0]=0x111 [1]=0x1
cpu0: 4KB/32B 4-way L1 Instruction cache
cpu0: 64KB/32B 4-way write-through L1 Data cache
vfp0 at cpu0: VFP11
vfp0: mvfr: [0]=0x11111111 [1]=0
ifpga0 at mainbus0: Build 0, Rev A, Manufacturer Unknown, ASB, Little-endian,
ifpga0: FPGA unknown, SYSCLK 2.00MHz
ifpga0: vendor 0x0000 product 0x0000 (miscellaneous prehistoric)
pci_configure_bus done
sm0 at ifpga0 addr 0xb8000000 irq 27
sm0: SMC91C111, revision 1, buffer size: 8192
sm0: MAC address 52:54:00:12:34:56, default media MII (internal PHY)
plcom0 at ifpga0 addr 0x6000000 irq 1
plcom0: console
plcom1 at ifpga0 addr 0x7000000 irq 2
plrtc0 at ifpga0 addr 0x5000000
pci0 at ifpga0 bus 0
pci0: i/o space, memory space enabled
timecounter: Timecounter "clockinterrupt" frequency 100 Hz quality 0
clock: hz=100 stathz = 100 profhz = 500
timecounter: Timecounter "ifpga" frequency 62500 Hz quality 100
boot device: <unknown>
root device: sm0
dump device: 
file system (default generic): 
root on sm0
nfs_boot: trying DHCP/BOOTP
nfs_boot: DHCP next-server:
nfs_boot: my_addr=
nfs_boot: my_mask=
nfs_boot: gateway=
root on
root file system type: nfs
init path (default /sbin/init): 
init: trying /sbin/init

You will see many error messages from src/sys/arch/evbarm/ifpga/ifpga_clock.c.

statclockhandler: Statclock overrun

After NetBSD is booted, you can setup sm0 network interface with dhcpcd command.

# dhcpcd sm0

Using QEMU to debug the kernel

Additional links

What works

What needs work

more info

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