Devices Lacking Linux Support Needed

Greg KH recently announced that Novell was letting him work on the Linux Driver Project full time. The response was huge, with over 300 developers answering the call. Lack of Linux drivers is usually pretty high up on the list of Linux shortcomings. But a follow up post by Greg indicates that there’s not enough work to keep all the developers busy:

There was a lot of very good press coverage over my last announcement of the restart of the Linux Driver Project and my involvement in it now full time. It’s been a few weeks since that announcement, and we now have over 300 different developers signed up to help create, and maintain Linux drivers!

I’ve also posted a short status report about the current projects, and what is going on with them. Since then, one more project has started, and there are a handful still in the planning stage.

What we need now is more companies participating in the project, we have the developers, but not enough work to keep them busy.

So how do we change this? I’m thinking that possibly, there really isn’t a large number of different devices out there that need Linux support written for them.

As proof of this, I give you the Linux Foundation’s Vendor Advisory Board. This group of companies publish a list of priorities that they feel need to be worked on in order to help Linux succeed.

Coming in at number 3 is “Device Driver Support”. So, I approached this group and asked them specifically what devices did they see in common use that are not supported by Linux (the obvious 2 video cards being a known exception.) Despite this being such a high priority for this group, they had no examples to provide.

And neither do I. I don’t currently know of any common piece of hardware in use today that is not supported on Linux. And since these vendors do not know, and I don’t, I’m asking the world to help out.

So, please, let me know what specific type of device you know of that is not properly supported on Linux. If you want, please mark up the wiki page at:

http://linuxdriverproject.org/twiki/bin/view/Main/DriversNeeded

Is the lack of Linux device drivers an issue that is a bit overblown by a couple of high profile examples? Is it a stigma held over from previous days when some areas, such as wireless networking, were poor? Visit the Linux Driver Project wiki if you have hardware that doesn’t work in Linux, and let them know.

–jeremy

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