Version 9.3.1-1.2 is a maintenance release of xPack GNU Arm Embedded GCC, intended to fix C++ exceptions support for non-nano libraries, and to use DT_RPATH to make the binaries immune to custom LD_LIBRARY_PATH.

This is the xPack distribution of the GNU Arm Embedded Toolchain.

There are separate binaries for Windows 32/64-bit, macOS, Intel GNU/Linux 32/64-bit and Arm GNU/Linux 32/64-bit platforms, like Raspberry Pi.

Download

The binary files are available from GitHub releases.

Install

The full details of installing the xPack GNU Arm Embedded GCC on various platforms are presented in the separate Install page.

Easy install

The easiest way to install GNU Arm Embedded GCC is with xpm by using the binary xPack, available as @xpack-dev-tools/arm-none-eabi-gcc from the npmjs.com registry.

To install the latest version available, use:

$ xpm install --global @xpack-dev-tools/arm-none-eabi-gcc@latest

To install this specific version, use:

$ xpm install --global @xpack-dev-tools/arm-none-eabi-gcc@9.3.1-1.2.1

Compliance

This release follows the official GNU Arm Embedded Toolchain 9-2020-q2-update release June 01, 2020 and it is based on the gcc-arm-none-eabi-9-2020-q2-update-src.tar.bz2 source invariant.

For more details see the original Arm release text files:

  • distro-info/arm-readme.txt
  • distro-info/arm-release.txt

Supported libraries

The supported libraries are:

$ arm-none-eabi-gcc -print-multi-lib
.;
arm/v5te/softfp;@marm@march=armv5te+fp@mfloat-abi=softfp
arm/v5te/hard;@marm@march=armv5te+fp@mfloat-abi=hard
thumb/nofp;@mthumb@mfloat-abi=soft
thumb/v7/nofp;@mthumb@march=armv7@mfloat-abi=soft
thumb/v7+fp/softfp;@mthumb@march=armv7+fp@mfloat-abi=softfp
thumb/v7+fp/hard;@mthumb@march=armv7+fp@mfloat-abi=hard
thumb/v7-r+fp.sp/softfp;@mthumb@march=armv7-r+fp.sp@mfloat-abi=softfp
thumb/v7-r+fp.sp/hard;@mthumb@march=armv7-r+fp.sp@mfloat-abi=hard
thumb/v6-m/nofp;@mthumb@march=armv6s-m@mfloat-abi=soft
thumb/v7-m/nofp;@mthumb@march=armv7-m@mfloat-abi=soft
thumb/v7e-m/nofp;@mthumb@march=armv7e-m@mfloat-abi=soft
thumb/v7e-m+fp/softfp;@mthumb@march=armv7e-m+fp@mfloat-abi=softfp
thumb/v7e-m+fp/hard;@mthumb@march=armv7e-m+fp@mfloat-abi=hard
thumb/v7e-m+dp/softfp;@mthumb@march=armv7e-m+fp.dp@mfloat-abi=softfp
thumb/v7e-m+dp/hard;@mthumb@march=armv7e-m+fp.dp@mfloat-abi=hard
thumb/v8-m.base/nofp;@mthumb@march=armv8-m.base@mfloat-abi=soft
thumb/v8-m.main/nofp;@mthumb@march=armv8-m.main@mfloat-abi=soft
thumb/v8-m.main+fp/softfp;@mthumb@march=armv8-m.main+fp@mfloat-abi=softfp
thumb/v8-m.main+fp/hard;@mthumb@march=armv8-m.main+fp@mfloat-abi=hard
thumb/v8-m.main+dp/softfp;@mthumb@march=armv8-m.main+fp.dp@mfloat-abi=softfp
thumb/v8-m.main+dp/hard;@mthumb@march=armv8-m.main+fp.dp@mfloat-abi=hard

Bug fixes

  • [#7] Due to a bug in the build scripts, the non-nano libraries were also build without C++ exceptions support; fixed.

Enhancements

The relative path in binaries was changed from DT_RUNPATH to DT_RPATH; this improves reliability, since the binaries can no longer be affected by custom LD_LIBRARY_PATH, as when using DT_RUNPATH.

Changes

There should be no functional changes.

Starting with 9.x, the new archives are created with a single folder named xpack-arm-none-eabi-gcc-9.3.1-1.2 instead of the hierarchical xPacks/arm-none-eabi-gcc/9.3.1-1.2. This internal folder name is used consistently on all platforms. The archive extension was changed to .tar.gz.

With these changes, the archives can now be used directly in other development environments (like Arduino), without having to repack them.

Python

Support for Python scripting was added to GDB. This distribution provides two separate binaries, arm-none-eabi-gdb-py with Python 2.7 support, and arm-none-eabi-gdb-py3 with support for Python 3.7.

It is mandatory to have exactly those versions installed, otherwise GDB will not start properly.

For this it is recommended to install the binaries provided by Python, not those available in the distribution, since they may be incomplete, for example those in Ubuntu/Debian, which split the Python system library into multiple packages.

On GNU/Linux, the recommended way is to build is from sources, and install locally:

python3_version="3.7.9"
mkdir -p "${HOME}/Downloads"
curl -L --fail -o "${HOME}/Downloads/Python-${python3_version}.tgz" https://www.python.org/ftp/python/${python3_version}/Python-${python3_version}.tgz 
rm -rf "${HOME}/Work/Python-${python3_version}"
mkdir -p "${HOME}/Work"
cd "${HOME}/Work"
tar xzf "${HOME}/Downloads/Python-${python3_version}.tgz" 
cd "${HOME}/Work/Python-${python3_version}"
bash ./configure --prefix="${HOME}/opt"
make
make altinstall

To run GDB with this version of Python, use a script to set the proper environment, like:

mkdir -p "${HOME}/opt/bin"
cat <<'__EOF__' > "${HOME}/opt/bin/arm-none-eabi-gdb-py3.sh"
#!/usr/bin/env bash
PYTHONPATH="$($HOME/opt/bin/python3.7 -c 'import os; import sys; print(os.pathsep.join(sys.path))')" \
PYTHONHOME="$($HOME/opt/bin/python3.7 -c 'import sys; print(sys.prefix)')" \
arm-none-eabi-gdb-py3 "$@"
__EOF__
chmod +x "${HOME}/opt/bin/arm-none-eabi-gdb-py3.sh"

Text User Interface (TUI)

Support for TUI was added to GDB. The ncurses library (v6.2) was added to the distribution.

Known problems

  • the GDB binaries with Python support were built with version 2.7/3.7, and require exactly those versions in order to run properly.

Shared libraries

On all platforms the packages are standalone, and expect only the standard runtime to be present on the host.

All dependencies that are build as shared libraries are copied locally in the same folder as the executable.

DT_RPATH and LD_LIBRARY_PATH

On GNU/Linux the binaries are adjusted to use a relative path:

$ readelf -d library.so | grep rpath
 0x000000000000001d (RPATH)            Library runpath: [$ORIGIN]

In the GNU ld.so search strategy, the DT_RPATH has the highest priority, higher than LD_LIBRARY_PATH, so if this later one is set in the environment, it should not interfere with the xPack binaries.

Please note that previous versions, up to mid-2020, used DT_RUNPATH, which has a priority lower than LD_LIBRARY_PATH, and does not tolerate setting it in the environment.

@executable_path

Similarly, on macOS, the dynamic libraries are adjusted with otool to use a relative path.

Documentation

The original PDF documentation is available in the share/doc folder.

Supported platforms

Binaries for Windows, macOS and GNU/Linux are provided.

The binaries were built using the xPack Build Box (XBB), a set of build environments based on slightly older distributions, that should be compatible with most recent systems.

  • Intel GNU/Linux: all binaries were built with GCC 9.3, running in an Ubuntu 12 Docker container
  • Arm GNU/Linux: all binaries were built with GCC 9.3, running in an Ubuntu 16 Docker container (added in mid-2020)
  • Windows: all binaries were built with mingw-w64 GCC 9.3, running in an Ubuntu 12 Docker container
  • macOS: all binaries were built with GCC 9.3, running in a separate folder on macOS 10.10.5.

Build

The scripts used to build this distribution are in:

  • distro-info/scripts

For the prerequisites and more details on the build procedure, please see the How to build page.

Travis tests

The first set of tests were performed on Travis, by running a simple script to check if the binaries start and compile several simple programs on a wide range of platforms and distributions:

Tests

The binaries were testes on Windows 10 Pro 32/64-bit, Ubuntu 18 LTS 64-bit, Xubuntu 18 LTS 32-bit and macOS 10.13.

The tests consist in building and debugging some simple Eclipse projects available in the project.

Since the source code used for GCC is identical to the one used by Arm, the long and complex tests performed by Arm to validate their release were not executed again.

Checksums

The SHA-256 hashes for the files are:

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xpack-arm-none-eabi-gcc-9.3.1-1.2-darwin-x64.tar.gz

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xpack-arm-none-eabi-gcc-9.3.1-1.2-linux-arm64.tar.gz

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xpack-arm-none-eabi-gcc-9.3.1-1.2-linux-arm.tar.gz

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xpack-arm-none-eabi-gcc-9.3.1-1.2-linux-x32.tar.gz

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xpack-arm-none-eabi-gcc-9.3.1-1.2-linux-x64.tar.gz

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xpack-arm-none-eabi-gcc-9.3.1-1.2-win32-x32.zip

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xpack-arm-none-eabi-gcc-9.3.1-1.2-win32-x64.zip

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