[coreboot] [announce] coreboot for the 21st century

ron minnich rminnich at gmail.com
Fri Mar 21 16:26:27 CET 2014

On Fri, Mar 21, 2014 at 7:55 AM, Vladimir 'φ-coder/phcoder' Serbinenko <
phcoder at gmail.com> wrote:

> I suppose that most of boards were contributed by non-commercial
> community.

It's much more complicated than that. The initial support for coreboot came
from DOE. SiS gve a lot of support with early boards and chipsets, as did
via and to some extent Acer. LNXI was tremendous, providing romcc and the
alpha port. DOE funded a PowerPC port. AMD gave us AGESA, and their
commitment to releasing source began in 2007 and continues to this day.
More recently, SAGE gave us several boards, and Google of course gave us
the Ivybridge, Sandybridge, Haswell, Baytrail, and ARM ports, including V8.
The German Gov't gave us the i945 bits. We got some very nice early
contributions for Geode from a community developer, but starting in 2006
AMD committed two full time guys for several years to make it an industrial
quality port; their work spanned 3 years. Core Systems carried the ball for
many years in Germany, and it was a very lonely time for them.

If you look carefully, or if you have been here since the beginning as I
have, you'll realize that your claim here is quite wrong. This is not like
Linux. You can no longer just jump in with some docs and get a chipset done
in a few months on your own, as I did for the 440gx in 1999. You need a
substantial financial commitment to do a chipset, as well as access to
documents that are very hard to get in some cases, before you can even
start. I estimate based on what I know of the people involved at various
companies, and taking a very low burdened headcount cost, that the
companies involved have contributed well over $50M to this effort. And
that's only taking the people I know. There are lots of others I don't

In general, the wonderful work by our non-commercial people has been to
take an existing chipset port to a new mainboard -- a lot of work, but
anywhere from 10x to 100x less work than the chipset work as I can tell you
from experience -- or to improve common code that applies to all
motherboards, such as cbfs; and, of course, in addition to coding we see
the outstanding job people like Peter do on outreach. Vladimir, you are one
of our extreme cases, given your levels of contribution of chipset code for
the intel chipset MRC and graphics on the thinkpads :-) How you figured
that memory training stuff out I don't know.

It's just not fair to discount the gov't and commercial involvement in
coreboot. Without those sustaining commitments over the last 15 years
coreboot would not exist. And, like it or not, they represent by far the
greatest amount of code that has been contributed to coreboot. You don't
have to believe me; check the numbers.

-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://www.coreboot.org/pipermail/coreboot/attachments/20140321/5904c8c4/attachment.html>

More information about the coreboot mailing list