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SubjectRe: NAK new drivers without proper power management?
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Howdy!

On Mon, 2007-02-12 at 01:10 +0100, Tilman Schmidt wrote:
> Hi,
>
> Am 11.02.2007 23:37 schrieb Nigel Cunningham:
> > On Sun, 2007-02-11 at 00:45 +0100, Tilman Schmidt wrote:
> >> Am 10.02.2007 23:37 schrieb Nigel Cunningham:
> >>> If your device requires power management, and you know it requires power
> >>> management, why not just implement power management? [...]
> >> Like it or not, power management is far from trivial, and people
> >> writing device drivers have limited resources. [...]
> > It's not that complex. All we're really talking about is a bit of extra
> > code to cleanup and configure hardware state; things that the driver
> > author already knows how to do. S3 might require a bit more
> > initialisation if firmware needs to be reloaded or more extensive
> > configuration needs to be done, but if there's firmware to be loaded,
> > there is a reasonably good probability that we loaded it from Linux to
> > start with anyway.
>
> You are assuming a perfect world where driver authors have complete
> knowledge of their devices. In reality, many drivers (including
> those I have the mixed pleasure of maintaining) are based at least
> in part on reverse engineering, and managing power states may well
> fall into the domain of things not yet sufficiently reverse
> engineered.

Nope. I'm assuming that the driver author knows what needs to be done to
get the driver out of whatever state the BIOS puts it in to start with,
and into an operational state, and that they therefore also know what
needs to be done to take it out of the operational state again. I'm
admitting that there's also another state - the post suspend-to-ram
driver state - that they may not know how to deal with. But for
suspend-to-disk, if you know how to get the driver to work in the first
place, you know enough to stop it working (.suspend) and start it up
again (.resume) for the hibernate case at least.

I'm not assuming that you know enough to be able to put the driver into
a low state and get it out again. This is definitely preferable, and at
least possibly essential for suspend to ram, but for some unknown reason
I'm quite hibernation focused, and for that, just the above is
sufficient.

> >> Also, in your argument you neglected a few cases:
> >> - What if my device does not require power management?
> >
> > Then you as a generic routine that does nothing but return success
> > (potentially shared with other drivers that are in the same situation).
>
> But if I just write an empty routine like that I open myself up to
> criticism along the lines of "writing dummy routines just in order
> to shut up kernel warnings". BTDT.

Well, it might not be completely empty. I think someone already pointed
out that there's a minimal workset for the pci bus that pci drivers
would want to invoke. But we wouldn't (rightly) accuse you of such
things if we decided that the policy was "Every driver ought to have a
resume routine, even if it's just a minimal I-just-work route".

> >> - What if I don't know whether my device requires power management?
> >
> > The questions are straight forward: Is there hardware state that needs
> > to be configured if you've just booted the computer and nothing else has
> > touched it? If so, that needs to be done in a resume method. Do you need
> > to clean up state prior to doing the things in the resume method, or
> > otherwise do things to quiesce the driver? If so, they will need to be
> > done in the suspend method. The result will be roughly similar to what
> > you do for module load/unload, except maybe less complete in some cases.
>
> I don't doubt your basic assessment. However it doesn't translate that
> easily into a real implementation. In my case, I maintain a USB driver,
> so I have to deal with USB specifics of suspend/resume which happen not
> to be that well documented. My driver provides an isdn4linux device but
> isdn4linux knows nothing about suspend/resume so I am on my own on how
> to reconcile the two. The device itself, though in turn far from trivial,
> is actually the least of my worries.

Mmm, so that's a case where we need to prod those who write
documentation and bus support first. You're probably closer! :)

Regards,

Nigel

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