[coreboot] Intel rumers spreading??

Joseph Smith joe at settoplinux.org
Tue Jul 1 03:51:33 CEST 2008

On Mon, 30 Jun 2008 15:14:40 -0600, Jordan Crouse <jordan.crouse at amd.com>
> On 30/06/08 13:18 -0400, Joseph Smith wrote:
>> On Mon, 30 Jun 2008 18:28:37 +0200, Ward Vandewege <ward at gnu.org> wrote:
>> > On Mon, Jun 30, 2008 at 10:18:47AM -0400, Joseph Smith wrote:
>> >>
>> >> Maybe it is just me, but it seems like lately there have been a lot
> of
>> >> posts to the mailing list about, coreboot not supporting ANY Intel
>> >> chipsets/cpu's. Is there rumors spreading around the mill??? If so we
>> > need
>> >> to nip this in the bud, this is probably discouraging people that
> want
>> > to
>> >> get involved with coreboot.
>> >
>> > Well - look at it from the other perspective. Intel's being difficult.
>> The
>> > more obvious that becomes, the more they will be encouraged to change
>> > their
>> > ways and become more friendly and open.
>> >
>> I don't think spreading the word that coreboot does not support anything
>> Intel is a positive way to accomplish anything. It just frustrates and
>> discourages people willing to get involved. We have to face the facts
> here,
>> Intel may never get involved with coreboot, so the next best thing is to
>> get as many developers involved willing to take the time to fill in the
>> missing pieces of code. Thinking ouside of the box. This is what I did
> for
>> the i830, It might have taken me a little longer, but in the long run I
> did
>> it without any help from Intel (except for one public datasheet).
> Honesty is the best (and only) practice here.  Firmware development
> is hard - exceedingly hard, and thats with copious amounts of
> documentation.  

Don't get me wrong I agree that it is hard no matter what documenation is

> Without documentation, it becomes nearly impossible.
> Somebody look at the Barcelona memory initialization code and tell
> me they could have figured it out on their own.  I'm thinking not.
> So we have to be blatantly obvious about what our shortcomings are.
> You can believe all you want in the power of open source, but the
> truth of the matter is that 90% of all the people who come on this list
> to ask for a particular port are not interested in doing the work
> themselves, 

And that maybe part of the problem with Intel hardware, everyone wants it
but noone wants to work for it. I am far too familure with this, trust me.

>and the precious few that are willing to do the work need to
> be told right up front what they are facing.  

I was, and took it as a challenge, just like I am going to do with the USB
debugging device.

> They need to know what
> NDAs they need to secure, what code distribution rights they need to
> ask for, and just how difficult this work really is, especially in the
> cpu/* and northbridge/* directories.
> Thats not to say that people shouldn't be encouraged to ask the right
> questions - if enough people ask a vendor for datasheets, it might
> have a positive effect.  


> But acting as though we are not developing
> from behind the eight ball is going to give everybody the wrong
> impression,

I hope I never implied that, I just want to give positive encouragement.

> and it will result in even more upset feelings then if we just told them
> right off the bat that they are asking for something that probably isn't
> going to happen.
Agreed. But when someone asks If we support Intel hardware, telling them
"no we don't go away" so to speak, do you expect a positive reaction? No,
If someone said that to me I wouldn't even bother and just look for another
bios solution and maybe even have a few comments about the group that
didn't even bother, or offer help.
> And just in case this sounds like I'm bashing the competition, know that
> my own company is in the same boat.  We have yet to release the datasheet
> for the SB600, and until we do, I'm going to be the first to tell the
> honest truth if somebody asks for it.
Jordan, I have been involved with coreboot for about a year and a half now,
and no matter how Intel feels about coreboot, which I keep hearing over and
over, it is time to move in a new direction, and try something else. It is
kind of like this: We call the pizza guy to deliver our pizza but he never
shows up. What do we do? Keep calling the pizza guy to deliver our pizza
over and over agian hoping someday he will show up? In the mean time we are
getting hungrier and hungrier. Or, do we get up and go get pizza somwhere
else? In the end, the second option was more work, but we stiil got pizza
and fed our gut.

I hope you get my point.

Joseph Smith

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