From FedoraProject

32 bit UEFI Support

Summary

Some x86 systems ship with a 64 bit CPU, but 32 bit UEFI firmware. It is possible to use a 32 bit UEFI grub build to boot a 64 bit kernel and distribution on these systems. So far this setup has not been supported in Fedora. This feature is about adding support for installing and booting Fedora on this hardware.

Owner

  • Name: Peter Jones
  • Email: pjones@redhat.com
  • Release notes owner:

Current status

Detailed Description

To add support for booting Fedora x86_64 on x86 systems with 32 bit UEFI firmware a number of (small) changes to grub, various EFI related userspace tools and anaconda are necessary. See Scope for more details.

Benefit to Fedora

There are quite a few 32 bit UEFI x86 systems out there, so this will allow Fedora to run on more hardware. Some well known examples are: The Asus Transformer T100TA, HP Stream 7, Dell Venue 8 Pro 5830 and the first Apple Intel Macs.

Scope

  • Proposal owners:
    • The x86_64 grub2 packages will need to include an extra grub build, next to the current classic BIOS and 64 bit UEFI build a new 32 bit UEFI build will be added to the x86_64 packages.
    • This new grub will need to be added to the various x86_64 boot media
    • A few EFI userspace utilities need to be updated to work with 32 bit x86 UEFI
    • The installer (anaconda) needs some changes to the bootloader installation code to install the 32 bit UEFI grub binary
    • comps and the lorax templates for making media need to be adjusted to reflect newer packaging.
  • Other developers:
    • No changes are necessary outside of the affected packages
  • Release engineering: [1] (a check of an impact with Release Engineering is needed)
  • Policies and guidelines: N/A (not needed for this Change)
  • Trademark approval: N/A (not needed for this Change)

Upgrade/compatibility impact

These systems do not support running Fedora yet, so there is no upgrade path.

How To Test

  1. Take a x86 system using 32 bit UEFI firmware and a 64-bit CPU.
  2. Boot x86_64 workstation live image on it, does it boot?
  3. Install from live image, does the new install boot ?
  4. Boot x86_64 workstation installation dvd, does it boot ?
  5. Install from dvd, does the new install boot ?
  6. Repeat the same thing with the same media on a 64-bit UEFI firmware.

User Experience

Users with x86 systems using 32 bit UEFI firmware will now be able to install Fedora for the first time.

Dependencies

No changes outside of the mentioned packages (and compose recipes) are necessary. All needed code changes are already available and most are already upstream.

Contingency Plan

  • Contingency mechanism: Ship without 32 bit UEFI support. If this happens the proposal owner will change the compose recipes back to not include the 32 bit UEFI grub build, so as to not even give the suggestion of having 32 bit UEFI support. Any other package changes already done should be able to stay in place without causing issues.
  • Contingency deadline: Beta Freeze
  • Blocks release? Yes
  • Blocks product? N/A (not product specific)

Documentation

TODO

Release Notes

TODO