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SubjectRe: Device Driver
On Mon, 16 Oct 2000, John Alvord wrote:

> On Mon, 16 Oct 2000 14:45:03 +0200 (CEST), Igmar Palsenberg
> <maillist@chello.nl> wrote:
>
> >
> >> >I presume your driver doesn't mind if this image is unavailable.
> >> >If not, you'll need to provide a open source image to use in place
> >> >of your proprietary one.
> >>
> >> Linus, please confirm.
> >>
> >> Firmware for cards can be proprietary. It can either be installed by a
> >> userspace utility on startup (nothing to do with the kernel) or it can
> >> be installed by the kernel driver for the card during initialization.
> >> In the latter case, the image must be supplied in text format and
> >> converted to binary, no binary files in the kernel tarball.
> >
> >Every closed source piece of software is unacceptable in a standard kernel
> >:
> >
> >-hh We can't debug it
> >- We depend on the guys / girls that maintain the binary image
> >- It's a security risk.
> >
> Aren't there other examples where firmware is supplied in a struct
> which is initialized to the needed binary values? Seems like Linux
> doesn't need every bit of source (probably for some completely other
> processor or ASIC, maybe written in FORTH) included as part of the
> kernel.

This is different by a shade.
It would be one thing to have a struct with BINARY code to load that was
in a GPL C file, the other is having a binary-image that is
attached/linked to a kernel. Lastly if this if never going to be a device
that is needed until the completion of the kernel launch, then it is a
DGD, 'don't give a damn'. Because we can insert a stripping probe and
convert the image to something that is usable and safe.

If it is a firmware image, put another fpga on it and store it there.

Cheers,

Andre Hedrick
The Linux ATA/IDE guy

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