PCI card bios accessibility

Peter Stuge stuge-linuxbios at cdy.org
Wed Mar 3 21:49:01 CET 2004


On Wed, Mar 03, 2004 at 06:55:32PM -0800, Tina Declerck wrote:
> - Does the Linux BIOS do discovery on PCI slots for the existance
> of cards?

Yes, LinuxBIOS enumerates PCI buses behind hosts and bridges.

> - Will it use PCI configuration space to locate the Basic Address
> Register (BAR) to locate bios on a PCI card and load it?

There is initial work being done with VGA cards and progress indicates
that this may actually be possible to do even though LinuxBIOS runs
in protected mode and currently doesn't (want to) provide legacy BIOS
services. (i.e. int15h et.al.)

> Specifically, this is regarding a 3ware RAID card.

Right. Other peripheral cards vary in their behavior/requirements but I
personally think that a kernel driver should be able to do all neccessary
hardware initialization beyond PCI configuration. Providing a BIOS onboard
a storage controller would be useful primarily for booting legacy
operating systems off the connected storage. (Bonus: Hardware becomes
architecture independent - runs on anything with a PCI bus.)

> DISCLAIMER: The information contained in this electronic mail transmission
> is intended by 3ware for the use of the named individual or entity to which
> it is directed and may contain information that is confidential or
> privileged and should not be disseminated without prior approval from 3ware

I like 3ware and your products in general (just ordered a 7506-4), but I'm
afraid that this kind of disclaimer is useless at best, counterproductive at
worst - especially in open source environments.



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