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Old 15th May 2010
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Question OpenBSD /dev Questions

I recently installed OpenBSD 4.6 on an old laptop, and I am finding the /dev directory to be somewhat confusing. It seems as if there are device files which do not have corresponding devices or partition tied to them. Does this have something to do with the lack of udev or devfs?

Also, I cannot seem to find a good deal of my devices. For example, I have an Intel NIC card which uses the fxp driver, and the card works perfectly, but I cannot find an fxp0 device file in /dev. The same goes for my Atheros wireless card and ath0.

If someone here could answer my questions or point me to documentation that answers them, I would greatly appreciate it.
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Old 15th May 2010
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Originally Posted by Android1 View Post
...I have an Intel NIC card which uses the fxp driver, and the card works perfectly, but I cannot find an fxp0 device file in /dev. The same goes for my Atheros wireless card and ath0.
OpenBSD != FreeBSD.

These drivers are compiled in the kernel. You should find them listed in dmesg(8) output.
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Old 15th May 2010
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OpenBSD doesn't have a dynamic /dev filesystem, it is just a directory full of special device nodes generated but a script MAKEDEV(8) which itself runs mknod(8), this is how it was handled traditionally in Unix.. and personally I find it cleaner.

This requires some manual intervention if a device node does not exist, it's not overly difficult, and in most cases the installer will have generated a fair default.

Network interfaces do not have device nodes, you have 'block' and 'character' devices for disks, serial/tty interfaces, and other special devices that need to be represented and accessible by userland.

A framework exists called BPF(4), but I don't believe it's of any importance to you.
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OpenBSD doesn't have a dynamic /dev filesystem, it is just a directory full of special device nodes generated but a script MAKEDEV(8) which itself runs mknod(8), this is how it was handled traditionally in Unix.. and personally I find it cleaner.

This requires some manual intervention if a device node does not exist, it's not overly difficult, and in most cases the installer will have generated a fair default.

Network interfaces do not have device nodes, you have 'block' and 'character' devices for disks, serial/tty interfaces, and other special devices that need to be represented and accessible by userland.

A framework exists called BPF(4), but I don't believe it's of any importance to you.
That completely answers my question, and that is very interesting. I will have to study the history further. Thank you very much!
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