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SubjectRe: Driver API (was Re: Linux GPL and binary module exception clause?)
>>>>> "Hannu" == Hannu Savolainen <> writes:

Hannu> Even better would be a proper device driver ABI for "loosely
Hannu> integrated" device drivers.

One of the things we're working on here is an ABI to allow device
drivers to live in user space, by enabling access to interrupts and PCI
DMA. Now that NPTL and fast system calls are available, it's possible
to write, say, an IDE driver, that performs almost as well as (and in
some cases better than) the in-kernel driver.

Developing and tuning drivers out-of-kernel is *much* easier than
developing a module that lives in the kernel. Also, bugs in an
out-of-kernel driver are much less likely to affect the rest of the
kernel (although screwing up the SG-list you pass to the device can
do it)

Sound drivers would be ideal to move out of the kernel entirely, and
there's a student here working on that.

I'll be talking about some of this work at LCA2004, and intend to
release the code then too.

Dr Peter Chubb peterc AT
The technical we do immediately, the political takes *forever*
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