[LinuxBIOS] IT8718F support.

Stefan Reinauer stepan at coresystems.de
Wed Aug 30 17:10:15 CEST 2006

* Uwe Hermann <uwe at hermann-uwe.de> [060830 14:37]:
> I'm not sure whether a list of Super IOs is all that useful, though. We can
> simply support all of them (a coordinated effort shouldn't take more
> than a few weeks to support almost all Super IOs you can get a datasheet
> for).

Supporting all of them for the sake of it makes no sense, by your leave.
SuperIO chips alone dont do the deed.  if we manage to get a
"coordinated effort", i'd much rather go and support "80% of the common
superio chips out there" with in the end 50% of the effort and instead
try to get some more southbridge/northbridge combinations supported with
this effort. On K8 we lack Via and ATI chipset support, for Via we lack
C7 support,... all that stuff will give us a user base. 100% superio
chips alone wont, given that in 2 months we're at 98% of the existing
superios again, and in 2 ys below 50%.

>  1) publicity among non-coders to make the project well-known, and to
>     make the fact known that there's a viable, working Free Software
>     alternative to proprietary BIOSes.
I completely agree. The key to success here is, in my opinion, to
provide ready-built and tested images on an automated base for certain
hardware. Also, we need to work on the configuration part to move more
mainboard specifics (irq routing, complete hw tree) in the config file.
A mainboard from all supported components should not need any code to be
touched. only configuration files. Well, maybe we go with an exception
of a little GPIO triggering here and there i f this can not be
automated, but other than that: no new code for _motherboards_ 

>  2) Get as many coders as possible involved. Create incentive to try
>     LinuxBIOS, which will result in active contributions in many
>     cases. It's crucial to have support for a wide range of hardware,
>     as only that will really ensure a wide-spread use of LinuxBIOS
>     (I'm especially thinking about desktop machines here).

Unlike normal userspace programs or even kernels, recovering from a bad
bios can be quite some work. How do we overcome this? Not everyone is
going to buy a galep iv for 400$, nor a bios savior for 30.

>  3) Create pressure on those companies which do not give out datasheets
>     for various hardware parts. This is much easier if 1) is successful
>     and many people/customers demand LinuxBIOS support.
what do you mean by pressure?

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