I'd like to open discussion on a revamp of the text on the main coreboot.org Web site. I had a brief discussion on IRC recently with some basic agreement from a couple of people that the text on that page has likely bitrotted enough compared to the current status and goals of coreboot to no longer be useful.
I bring this up due to confusion in less technical circles that I've been having to correct over the past week or so. Specifically, these statements taken in isolation:
"Fast, secure and flexible OpenSource firmware"
"coreboot is an extended firmware platform that delivers a lightning fast and secure boot experience on modern computers and embedded systems. As an Open Source project it provides auditability and maximum control over technology."
present a very different picture than the reality of the project at the moment for modern platforms. If people are not aware of the ME, PSP, AGESA, FSP, BinaryPI, and a host of other proprietary components, they naturally take the statements above at face value and assume that installing coreboot on their machine (or paying for coreboot support for their system) allows them to replace the entire proprietary firmware with an auditable, fast, secure OpenSource firmware. As those of us dealing with the reality of modern x86 and ARM platforms understand more fully, this could not be farther from the truth.
One of the problems as I see it is that coreboot is really two different projects with two different goals right now, under the same label. One is the native init project, which at the moment is only viable for RISC-V, POWER, and certain ARM SoCs. The other is the open glue project for vendor binaries, which is not well understood at this time among much of the open source community, but seems to have significant support from vendors like Google, Intel, and AMD.
Complicating matters, the trademark "coreboot" is currently known to some members of the public as a trusted (albeit limited in compatibility) fully open source replacement for their exiting board level firmware. When the word "coreboot" is used, very few people think of the glue project. Do we want to dilute / shift the coreboot trademark / branding to the glue part of the project, or do we want to somehow reserve "coreboot" for the native init part of the project? I don't have an answer here, I'm just trying to state the facts as I currently see them for further discussion.
I would propose the following changes, and welcome discussion on these topics:
The heading could read something like "Flexible, open source frameworks for system firmware"
and the detailed description could read "coreboot is an extensible firmware platform that aims to provide a minimal boot environment for modern computers and embedded systems. As an Open Source project it provides a flexible framework for insertion of vendor specific firmware modules, and on open ISA platforms aims to provide a fully open, auditable boot process with maximum control over the technology."
-- Timothy Pearson Raptor Engineering, LLC https://www.raptorengineering.com