MIPS Malta

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Revision as of 15:41, 21 January 2005 by Ralf (talk | contribs) (Fix some incorrectness in the board's description.)
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The MIPS Malta is an ATX formfactor evaluation board made by MIPS Technologies. It supports a large variety of processor options; common processor types are 4Kc, 4Ke, 5Kc or a 24Kc core. The Malta board has four 32-bit PCI slots that are usually clocked at 33MHz, onboard IDE, Ethernet, USB and a 16550 compatible DUART. It can operate in big endian or little endian mode. This is accomplished by a BIGEND switch on the board.


Malta uses YAMON for it's firmware.

Linux support

The Malta is fully supported by Linux 2.4 and Linux 2.6.. Since generally the main CVS tree on linux-mips.org is more geared towards development a separate Malta CVS repository that's geared towards absolute stability on Malta.

A long standing bug in the kernel's memcpy is prefetching beyond the source and destination areas. That's usually harmless unless the prefetched addresses are outside of any RAM area. In this case the Malta board will signal a bus error exception which will result in a kernel crash. The issue was being discussed on the linux-mips mailing list. The workaround is to disable the use of prefetch instructions by disabling the CONFIG_HAS_PREFETCH instruction or alternativly making sure the last page of each memory area isn't being used. Other boards are likely to be affected also.