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    SubjectRe: ISA slot detection on PCI systems?
    On Wed, 2 Jan 2002, Eric S. Raymond wrote:

    > > > Consider the lives of people administering large server farms or
    > > > clusters. Their hardware is not necessarily homogenous, and the
    > > > ability to query the DMI tables on the fly could be useful both
    > > > for administration and automatic process migration.
    > > Given that 'dmidecode' works fine in those circumstances, that's still
    > > not a convincing argument imo.
    > But only for people and programs with root privileges.
    Someone building a new kernel for a box (ie administrator) will have
    root priveledges. Though running 'make guessconfig' or whatever as
    root would suck.

    What Alan suggests (ripping the necessary bits out of dmidecode
    and making a setuid program) sounds better, as long as someone
    audits it afterwards.

    > then, on whether we want to insist that all software doing hardware
    > probing must have root privileges to function.

    probing isa isn't pretty. which is why we don't have anything
    as nice as /proc/bus/pci. The pnpbios support goes a little towards
    this, but only detects PNP cards obviously. Ye olde ISA is all but
    invisible to /proc

    As we get the devicefs in 2.5 fleshed out, hopefully such things will
    come in time for the older busses like PNPISA & EISA

    > There is already stuff in /proc that seems to be there for precisely this
    > reason. So /proc/dmi would hardly be a violation of norms.

    Just because its a shitbucket, doesn't mean we should keep adding to it.
    It's become the dumping ground for so much crap that just doesn't need to
    be there.

    | Dave Jones.
    | SuSE Labs

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