After looking at it a bit more carefully and repatching, I finally noticed that
patch was failing partway through... :(
The problem goes back to 2.2.20-pre4, where the following appears in the section
of the patch relating to arch/ppc/kernel/openpic.c:
-#endif /* CONFIG_PMAC_PBOOK */
\ No newline at end of file
+#endif /* CONFIG_PMAC_PBOOK */
It would appear that later versions of diff output the "\ No newline..." line
when they find a file that has, surprise surprise, no newline at the end.
What I failed to realise was that older versions of patch (in my case, 2.1b)
choke on this kind of thing with a malformed patch error. I tried a later
version (2.5), which copes with it quite happily.
While I realise that the answer will most likely be "Upgrade your userland!", it
might be a good idea to consider filtering these lines out for the 2.2 series,
since it's more likely to be run on older boxes.
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