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Old 6th June 2015
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jggimi jggimi is offline
More noise than signal
Join Date: May 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 6,707

Originally Posted by LeFrettchen View Post
...with no access to the manufacturer's source code...
I believe you meant hardware interface specifications.

Specifications are normally required to implement a driver. Some manufacturers release this information publicly. Some manufacturers hold specifications as trade secret, devising their own drivers for their markets. Some manufacturers are willing to provide access to specifications only under non-disclosure agreements ("NDAs"). NDAs executed with members of open source projects will include terms and conditions that either permit or disallow open source drivers to be developed.

Without interface specifications from hardware manufacturers, integration of device hardware can take place, but as we can see from the short discussion I referred to above, driver design becomes much more difficult. If there are open source drivers already available, they can be reviewed for adaptability to the OS. Often, reverse engineering must be performed. Mr. Sperling reviewed FreeBSD and Linux drivers, and conducted some reverse engineering, but was not successful integrating this particular chipset into an existing driver.
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