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[PATCH 2/8] gdb: Conditionally run GDB script logic for dynamically or s

From: Glenn Washburn
Subject: [PATCH 2/8] gdb: Conditionally run GDB script logic for dynamically or statically positioned GRUB
Date: Mon, 27 Feb 2023 15:15:32 -0600

There are broadly two classes of targets to consider when loading symbols
for GRUB, targets that determine where to load GRUB at runtime
(dynamically positioned) and those that do not (statically positioned).
For statically poisitioned targets, symbol loading is determined at link
time, so nothing more needs to be known to load the symbols. For
dynamically positioned targets, such as EFI targets, at runtime symbols
should be offset by an amount that depends on where the runtime chose to
load GRUB.

It is important to not load symbols statically for dynamic targets
because then when subsequently loading the symbols correctly one must
take care to remove the existing static symbols, otherwise there will be
two sets of symbols and GDB seems to prefer the ones loaded first (ie the
static ones).

Use autoconf variables to generate a gdb_grub for a particular target,
which conditionally run startup code depending on if the target uses
static or dynamic loading.

Signed-off-by: Glenn Washburn <>
 grub-core/ | 19 ++++++++++++++++---
 1 file changed, 16 insertions(+), 3 deletions(-)

diff --git a/grub-core/ b/grub-core/
index d525a5a11f01..620d1def72d0 100644
--- a/grub-core/
+++ b/grub-core/
@@ -86,7 +86,20 @@ end
 set confirm off
-file kernel.exec
-target remote :1234
+# Note: On EFI and other platforms that load GRUB to an address that is
+# determined at runtime, the symbols in kernel.exec will be wrong.
+# However, we must start by loading some executable file or GDB will
+# fail.
+set $platform_efi = $_streq("@platform@", "efi")
+if $platform_efi
+       # Only load the executable file, not the symbols
+       exec-file kernel.exec
+       file kernel.exec
+       runtime_load_module
+target remote :1234

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