If there are small amount of people with enough knowledge to
write device drivers, let AMD, VIA, Intel and others make some
small one week school and call people from this community to
teach them how to do that. This way total cost of writing drivers
will be significantly lower (each company should donate some
money for this school, and to teach community members) and for
return people from community will be educated to do that.
It is win-win position - companies get drivers, community gets
I'm one of the first who would like to write drivers as
part of my practice in programming. It is not up to me do decide
how my programmer skills are, but I have MSc in Telecommunications
Engineering, and also I had many hardware/software oriented
exams. I believe for myself that I'm skilled programmer but I'm
lacking of knowledge about X Window System, DRI, Gallium3D.
To be worse I cannot find any satisfying literature on the Net
to start learning. I'm not talking about some 'Tutorials' or
'Introductions' but about some documents where I could understand
deeply how it is organized and how to write high quality drivers.
> Date: Sun, 19 Jul 2009 12:22:09 +0200
> From: HaraldWelte@...
> To: zajec5@...
> Subject: Re: [Patch 0/3] Resubmit VIA Chrome9 DRM via_chrome9 for upstream
> CC: dri-devel@...; RichardLee@...; gregkh@...; BruceChang@...; JosephChan@...; BenjaminPan@...
> Hi Rafal and others.
> On Sat, Jul 18, 2009 at 07:37:50PM +0200, Rafał Miłecki wrote:
>>> 4) VIA does not have the resources to write an entirely new 3D driver for
>>> Chrome9, especially since future products contain a different, incompatible
>>> GPU. I think it's much more useful to focus the resources at getting things
>>> "right" for those future products.
>>> So, as you can see, the situation is far from being perfect. However, it could
>>> also be much worse.
>> That's really poor explaination for lefting Chrome 9 users without 3D.
>> Earlier GPUs have at least some basic 3D (no Compiz) that works with
>> simple apps.
>> I understand you can't just release current 3D driver but I also
>> belive AMD just proved it's possible to write 3D driver in ~year.
> Do you understand that VIA is a _very very_ small company, if I'm guessing
> probably 1% of the size of AMD?
> You might also have heard that in the current economic situation, many
> companies have a complete halt to any new hiring, and have in fact had to let
> go a lot of staff.
> I have no detailed insight into VIA's business, but as you can see from
> publicly available information, i.e. http://www.legitreviews.com/news/6142/,
> this is not really a situation where you have any room left to invest in products
> whose R&D has finished a long time ago.
>> You've already DRM part done (it's written and tested!) so that makes
>> your work much easier. Did you try to calculate how many ppl would you
>> need to hire to write that driver? Did you consider cooperation with
>> some distro developers like AMD tried with Novell? Maybe I'm too
>> optimistic but r600 driver was written quite fast by only few ppl with
>> quite nice effect visible already.
> Right now, it is my undetstanding that even projects like the ati r600 driver,
> or the noveau driver are short of manpower. There are very few people in
> the community who have a lot of experience writing Xorg device drivers. Combine
> that with the fact that VIA's IGP products are only a very small portion of
> the overall market, there are not many users, both inndividual end users as
> well as corporate users, who have a high motivation working on it.
> Especially if there are new products on the roadmap that have a different
> architecture, and thus all work would probably not be possible.
> I am very much part of this community, and everyone who knows me knows how much
> I am a FOSS evangelist. I have never (and will never) use a proprietary graphics
> driver on my own systems.
> So I'm just providing my advice to VIA. And that advice clearly is to spend
> those few R&D resources they have on proper FOSS drivers for upcoming products,
> rather on Chrome9 - which would then mean that we are stuck in the loop where
> products are released without a proper FOSS driver, and we keep catching up
> by working on FOSS much after the hardware hits the market.
> Sorry, I wish the world was different..
> - Harald Welte http://linux.via.com.tw/
> VIA Free and Open Source Software Liaison
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