Not very serious quest to run Linux on every architecture

Just looking at the Debian Ports page, how many of these architectures do I own?

Arch Notes
Alpha Good, working Alpha hardware is getting hard to obtain these days.
amd64 (x86-64) Obviously …
ARM (32 bit) I don’t really care about anything less than ARM version 7 these days, although I do have a Sheevaplug which I think is v5 or v6. My “go-to” 32 bit ARM board is the Cubietruck.
ARM (64 bit) I don’t own, but have under my desk at work, the Applied Micro X-gene (picture), and a lovely piece of kit it is too.
HP-PA I would love to get my hands on some HP-PA RISC hardware, but it’s even harder to get hold of than Alpha. Edit: If you really want HP PA then the HP C8000 workstation is available on eBay for $300 or so.
i386 I own a Lenovo X60s laptop, which is one of the few 32 bit Intel processors with (very slow) hardware virtualization
ia64 HP Itanium RX2620
M68K As I started out my professional career writing 68k assembler, I’d love to buy an MVME crate, but incredibly they go for upwards of $1000 on ebay, even 20 years after they stopped being made.
MIPS ✓/✗ I just bought the MIPS Creator CI20. I don’t own any Big Endian MIPS hardware, nor any 64 bit MIPS hardware.
OpenRISC I have this burned into an FPGA, but in storage.
PPC (32 bit) I recently sent a couple of old 32 bit Mac G4s to recycling.
PPC/POWER (64 bit) ✓/✗ I own a Mac G5 running Linux (picture). However I don’t own, and as far as I know cannot get my hands on any of the more interesting POWER7 or POWER8 hardware, although I have remote access to it through Red Hat.
s390/s390x Similar to ppc64, no possible way to own it, but I am able to remote access it through Red Hat.
SPARC (32 bit) Currently sitting in storage, but it’s there and it used to run Linux, albeit with only 128 MB of RAM
SPARC (64 bit) Is it possible to buy 64 bit SPARC hardware for a reasonable price?

Looks like I’m about half way there!


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6 responses to “Not very serious quest to run Linux on every architecture

  1. Dan

    I sent a couple of Sun Ultra 5 pizza boxes to the recycling a few years ago. They had UltraSPARC IIe chips which were a very early implementation of SPARC V9.

    I kept the JavaStation “Krups” though, which has a little 32-bit MicroSPARC IIep CPU — last supported in kernel 2.4…

    • rich

      I’m guessing the Ultra 5’s have limited RAM. My 32 bit SPARC dates from around 1999 and maxes out at 128 MB, which makes running a modern Linux less than fun.

  2. Pingback: MIPS Creator (32 bit dual core MIPS) | Richard WM Jones

  3. patrick


    I have an alpha box it needed milo to boot.
    also a sparc ultra 10 with 500 mb of memory

    I am in southern calif near los angeles if
    you would be interested in the hardware.

  4. lain

    If you want SPARC64, the Blade 100 and 150s are dirt cheap, along with Sun Fire servers and T1/2 era servers.

    Good luck getting Linux on them, it’s broken on SPARC64 and expect tons and tons of segfault errors left and right. You’d need to do a lot of work to get newer CPUs working as well, might as well just run OpenBSD instead.

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