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SubjectRe: [bug?] tg3: Failed to load firmware "tigon/tg3_tso.bin"
On Fri, 4 Jul 2008, Alan Cox wrote:

>> External firmware is by design an error prone system, even with
>> versioning. But by being built and linked into the driver, it
>> is fool proof.
>> On a technical basis alone, we would never disconnect a crucial
>> component such as firmware, from the driver. The only thing
>> charging these transoformations, from day one, is legal concerns.
> As I said: We had this argument ten years ago (more than that now
> actually). People said the same thing about modules.

and they were right then as well. Fortunantly,at that time the kernel
developers listened and retained the possibility to not use modules.

if David W were to make it possible to not use the load_firmware() call to
userspace and build the firmware into the driver (be it in a monolithic
kernel or the module that contains the driver) this would not be a
problem. the default could be to build in the firmware (avoiding breakage)
and those people and distros that see a reason to seperate the firmware
would be able to by changing that setting.

we have also had the same argument about initrd/initramfs where people
have wanted to make them mandatory by moving things (like partition
detection) out of the kernel. so far this hasn't happened, and I hope it

David Lang

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