Why is it so hard for a company to provide an open firmware? : linux
In the previous couple of years, we have seen a variety of enchancment when it comes to hardware help on Linux. More and extra hardware work “out of the box” (particularly in the event you’re utilizing a distro corresponding to Fedora or Ubuntu or their derivatives).
However, there is at all times a ache level for something requiring a firmware. For occasion, touchpads and touchscreens. Often do I see issues with touchpads, spend a while investigating, and after a whereas uncover this has been magically fastened by an obscure firmware replace*. Sometimes the issue is certainly fastened, typically the scenario has merely improved, however it’s by no means potential to know what’s been accomplished on this firmware.
I used to be discussing with a colleague who advised me that even when these firmwares have been open supply, they might be completely ineffective with out public datasheet. And even when the datasheet have been made publicly obtainable, we might nonetheless require the entire proprietary toolchain used to produce the binary firmwares.
His conclusion is that it’s unimaginable to get this, due to the way in which producers and ODM work.
I am nonetheless uncertain what is the large deal right here. For occasion, touchpads have been round for at the very least three a long time to the final consumer. Surely, there is no big secret or mental property that a touchpad-making company would really like to hold from its opponents… is there? Am I lacking one thing?
(Of course, the identical goes with computer systems BIOS.)
* typically I additionally uncover there aren’t any firmware replace and the difficulty can’t be fastened by software program both, making the gadget hardly usable or unusable.