This post shows how easy it is to make a custom embedded Linux system for Raspberry Pi using Buildroot. I used an Ubuntu 13.04 VM for Parallels Desktop 9 to perform the build.
The Ubuntu VM required only a few dependencies and I could go ahead with the build. These I installed by executing
sudo apt-get install ncurses-dev git g++
I then obtained Buildroot release buildroot-2014.05.tar.gz and extracted it to a local folder using
tar xvzf buildroot-2014.05.tar.gz. The procedure to perform the build and prepare an SD card is well documented in file
I headed into the buildroot-2014.05 folder and prepared the appropriate
.config file required by buildroot
cd buildroot-2014.05 make raspberrypi_defconfig
Since I wanted to generate a persistent root file system, I followed that by executing
The build takes a while to finish. Once done, I followed the steps in readme.txt mentioned above to prepare an SD card. I already had an appropriately formatted SD card so I copied the relevant output files
rm /media/parallels/boot/* cp output/images/rpi-firmware/* /media/parallels/boot/ cp output/images/zImage /media/parallels/boot/ sudo rm -rf /media/parallels/fc254b57-8fff-4f96-9609-ea202d871acf/* sudo tar xf output/images/rootfs.tar -C /media/parallels/fc254b57-8fff-4f96-9609-ea202d871acf/
I was able to boot Raspberry Pi with the newly minted headless embedded Linux system, use an HDMI display to log in, and bring up the ethernet interface eth0.