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MIPS Linux book updated, sample chapter available

Sep 14, 2006 — by LinuxDevices Staff — from the LinuxDevices Archive — 1 views

Dominic Sweetman of MIPS Technologies has updated his guidebook to the MIPS architecture. See MIPS Run…Linux offers a technical look at MIPS32, and uses Linux to illustrate how operating system kernels and application environments can be built on top of the RISC-based architecture.

(Click for larger view of the MIPS book's racy cover)

The first edition of the book, entitled simply See MIPS Run, debuted in 1999, and has been a best-seller, according to publisher Elsevier, which specializes in scientific and educational titles.

According to Elsevier, the second edition of Sweetman's MIPS guidebook covers MIPS32, rather than the R3000. Another change is the use of Linux to illustrate MIPS operating system concepts.

Sweetman uses Linux is used to show how libraries, kernel drivers, and CPU-specific code can be built on the foundation provided by MIPS. Linux discussion topics include “application code and library support, protection and memory management, interrupts in the Linux kernel, and multiprocessor Linux,” Elsevier says.

Chapter topics include:

  • RISCs and MIPS
  • MIPS Architecture
  • Coprocessor 0: MIPS Processor Control
  • How Caches work on MIPS
  • Exceptions, Interrupts, and Initialization
  • Low-level Memory Management and the TLB
  • Floating-Point Support
  • Complete Guide to the MIPS Instruction Set
  • Reading MIPS Assembler Language
  • Porting Software to MIPS
  • MIPS Software Standards
  • Debugging MIPS – debug and profiling features
  • GNU/Linux from Eight Miles High
  • How hardware and software work together
  • MIPS-specific issues in the Linux kernel
  • Linux Application Code, PIC and Libraries
  • MIPS Multithreading
  • Other Optional extensions to the MIPS instruction set
  • MIPS Glossary

Sample chapter

The book's 28-page introductory chapter is particularly interesting, offering a basic introduction to RISC architecture in general, and the MIPS architecture's five-state pipeline in particular, as well as a high-level historical overview of popular MIPS chips and cores. Elsevier has generously allowed LinuxDevices to share this chapter with our readers (*).

Click here to read Chapter 1 in PDF format:

Chapter 1: RISCs and MIPS


See MIPS…Run Linux is available now. The 512-page book can be ordered direct from Elsevier, priced at $50.

(*) The sample chapter is reproduced by with permission from Morgan Kaufmann, a division of Elsevier. Copyright 2007. “See MIPS Run…Linux” Second Edition by Dominic Sweetman. For more information about this title and other similar books, please visit

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