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Revision as of 16:45, 1 July 2011


The purpose of the tool is to allow the user to create and build a custom image as well as enabling parameters of the build to be configured.

I've tried to apply the principle of least surprise and tried to make the app fit in on a Gnome desktop by following their HIG. One possibly unexpected outcome of this is that you modify Preferences which equate to values in local.conf


There are several issues with the GUI as is that I will be working on next, as well as some extra features that I am intending to implement in the coming weeks.


  • I wanted to allow users to store recipes for their newly created images on disk and buildFile didn't seem to work as expected (only building the rootfs of the image and complaining when packages where missing, rather than building all dependencies then the rootfs) so I hacked a temporary alternative entry point to the program bitbake-commander (I know we have a program using this name already, which is fine because I don't want this entry point to last).

I want to remove this entry point but first need to figure out a way to be able to modify layers and re-parse with the new layers' contents. Hacking in this entry point enabled me to remain focused on the actual GUI whilst I worked out interaction models.

This entry points shows a "workspace selector" dialog (like Eclipse's) and once the user selects/creates a workspace layer it is added to the bblayers.conf file and BitBake is then started.


  • In a similar vein I implemented a layer editor which helps the user set up bblayers.conf, however the layer parsing and setting of BBPATH, etc is done really early in the cooker initialisation. I need to work out a clean way to allow modifying the bblayers.conf and having those changes reflected in the UI without having to restart the GUI (i.e: triggering a re-parse of the metadata).


  • As alluded to above I was hoping I'd just be able to create files and use the buildFile command to build the image rather than having the workspace layer but as mentioned above calling the buildFile command didn't seem to handle building the images contents, instead the build would just go straight to rootfs generation and bail with missing packages.

Furthermore I think using buildTargets is the right solution so that the user can build a cross toolchain and rootfs from the same GUI.

I'm aware that the coding style is all over, I had started out carryin on with the gtk+ coding style of the other files in lib/bb/ui/crumbs but I think I will end up switching the coding style of everything in lib/bb/ui to be consistent with the rest of BitBake.

Feedback, particularly on the areas above marked as issues, is extremely welcome.

I'm trying to keep an up-to-date To Do list at:

I've also started to track possible future GUI work:

The current state of the code is in my josh/hob branch on poky-contrib:

(Being more explicit the patch with HACK HACK HACK as the subject is one I'm not at all happy with and the patch with WIP WIP WIP as the subject is one which certainly needs more work.)

There's even a Yocto bugzilla component for the 'image creator':

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