Enabling RISC-V Support in Flathub

Hi everyone!

I’m interested in getting RISC-V support into Flathub, as RISC-V appears to only be gaining traction as well as be a highly promising platform for PCs and servers alike. There has been no mention of it at all in the context of Flathub other than a generic goal to add support for it in 2023. Therefore, I’d like to know what the process might be to enable Flathub RISC-V support. I do know a real biggie is Buildbot infrastructure. There is an upcoming 64-core server board that you can pre order right now, but it’s $2000 for a complete package, although I happen to have ordered one already. Additionally, unless you pay out the nose for datacenter colocation, you have to either home host the server or use a Chinese cloud. Other than that, what else can I help with to get RISC-V support on the same level of x86 and aarch64 at Flathub?

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Do you represent a RISC-V vendor that wants to sponsor and support this ?

I’m not actually affiliated with any RISC-V vendor in particular. However, I do want to get RISC-V to the same state as x86 and ARM, as not only does RISC-V show huge potential to be the “last” ISA, but it’s already viable for desktop usage. It seems like a lot of projects refuse to admit that it even exists, though, and I don’t want the same to happen to Flatpak/Flathub.

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Without funding Flathub would likely not be able to procure and run their own infrastructure. If you want projects to adopt it you’ll likely need to find a sponsor that also wants to see this happen to fund or provide hardware to run builds on.

Can one quantify with ballpark numbers how much hardware or how much money would be needed?

Debian right now has a fleet of 7 HiFive Unmatched boards, which were $1000 each. Multiply that by 7 and the total is $7000. However, each board needs some extra supporting accessories, so if each one is $1400 total then 7 is about $10K.

Since then, RISC-V has gotten a lot cheaper/faster for the same performance/price respectively, so here’s two potential scenarios.

  1. The VisionFive 2 is the same or slightly faster than the Unmatched at around $100 each (VisionFive 2 — ameriDroid), and all you need extra is a MicroSD/eMMC/NVMe card and a USB-C power supply, so add $50 each for $150 total each. Getting the same Debian setup is therefore about $1000 which is downright cheap for what you’re getting.

  2. The Milk-V Pioneer was $1200 for pre-order and $1500 for regular. However, the Pioneer Box includes all the supporting accessories for $2000 pre-order and $2500 regular. Just one of these monsters is approximately equivalent to 20 (?) VF2s, so it’s the same price/performance.

Therefore, it looks like a reasonable setup could be done for just a couple thousand dollars, which isn’t out of reach for a lot of people. Like in my original post, I have a Pioneer pre-ordered and potentially another reserved just for Flathub, so I’m willing to help out if needed.

Then a fundraising sprint for a RISC-V hardware build-out should be able to easy to achieve. Either via kickstarter/gofundme/etc.

Should be open collective as Flatpak - Open Collective is - but we need it to be flathub specifically I think

I am awaiting of you actual contribution of “a reasonable setup could be done for just a couple thousand dollars, which isn’t out of reach for a lot of people” since it is within your reach.

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