Debian is one of the most acclaimed and respected open-source projects, with over 1,400 contributors from all over the world, and the Debian GNU/Linux operating system is being used almost everywhere around us.

After stating a few months ago that 2016 would be the year of the MIPS hardware architectures, Imagination Technologies, a British-based technology R&D company known for promoting the MIPS family of microprocessors, has donated multiple high-performance SDNA-7130 appliances to the Debian Project.

These powerful SDNA-7130 (Software Defined Network Appliance) platforms, which were developed by Rhino Labs, a leading provider of high-performance data infrastructure solutions, data security, and networking, will be used by Debian to advance the development and maintenance of Debian GNU/Linux on MIPS CPUs.

“The Debian project would like to thank Imagination, Rhino Labs and aql for this coordinated donation,” says Laura Arjona Reina in today’s announcement. “Debian MIPS ports are also possible thanks to donations from the aql hosting service provider, the Eaton remote controlled ePDU, and many other individual members of the Debian community.”

Debian GNU/Linux works on 32-bit and 64-bit MIPS

The SDNA-7130 appliances donated by Imagination Technologies to the Debian Project come with enterprise-grade, high-performance Cavium OCTEON III CN7130 chips with Quad-Core MIPS64 processors clocked at 1.5 GHz, along with state-of-the-art FPUs (Floating Point Units), giving the Debian devs access to MIPS64 Release 5 architecture’s high-level feature set.

Also thanks to the new devices, the Debian developers will finally be able to access the multitude of 64-bit, as well as 32-bit MIPS-based platforms. MIPS (Microprocessor without Interlocked Pipeline Stages), for those not in the known, is a reduced instruction set computer instruction set architecture developed by MIPS Technologies. MIPS is part of the RISC instruction set family.

At the moment, the Debian GNU/Linux operating system is known to work on the 64-bit (amd64), 32-bit (i386), 64-bit ARM (AArch64), EABI ARM (Armel), Hard Float ABI ARM (ARMhf), Intel Itanium IA-64, MIPS (big-endian mode), MIPSel (little-endian mode), Motorola/IBM PowerPC (PPC), POWER7+, POWER8, s390, System z (s390x), and Sun SPARC hardware architectures. To get started with using Debian GNU/Linux on MIPS, please visit the project’s dedicated wiki page.

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