Is RISC-V the future of computing? I sure hope so. So I tracked down one of the cheapest Linux-capable SBCs that supports this architecture, the Milk-V Duo. For a retail price of $9, this little guy offers a RV64 Linux environment complete with busybox, Ethernet, and a wide assortment of IO rivaling some microcontrollers. Today I’m going to steup the board and start learning about RISC-V computing!
Fundamentally, the RISC-V architecture is a document which describes the binary machine lanuage of a 32, 64, or 128 bit processor with integer and optional floating point support, but it’s also symbolic of the shift to open computing for the future, and as a computer engineer I’m excited to learn more about it.
I compiled 3 test programs in 5 different 64-bit architectures (AMD, ARM, RISC-V, PowerPC, and MIPS). You can find the code and the resulting assembly here.
IPv6-enabled SD Card Image⌗
If you’d like to use my IPv6-enabled SD Card image, I’ve released it on my github here. I’ve also submitted a pull request which you can check the status of here, so you can go back to their releases once it’s merged.
No-IOM (GPU) SD Card Image⌗
I also have a build with both IPv6 and the IOM (which does graphics processing) disabled, if you need more memory and don’t need the camera features. It’s also on my github. No PR for this one, but you can look at the
no-iom branch in my repo to see the changes.
total used free shared buff/cache available Mem: 29236 14172 8336 80 6728 12260 Swap: 0 0 0
total used free shared buff/cache available Mem: 56680 14132 35844 80 6704 38668 Swap: 0 0 0
Swap on SD Card⌗
The default SD card image has a 256M space allocated for swap, but it’s not formatted/mounted. You can do that fairly easily:
mkswap /dev/mmcblk0p3 swapon /dev/mmcblk0p3
In the future you just need to run the
swapon command to enable the partition that’s already formatted. Looking at
free, we get swap now:
total used free shared buff/cache available Mem: 56680 14216 35264 80 7200 38596 Swap: 262140 0 262140
Now you should have enough memory for some real work! It’s just super slow SD card memory lol.