This was originally sent to the linux-kernel and driver-devel mailing lists. Might as well post it here to get a wider audience as the last report was received well.

Here's a summary of the state of the drivers/staging/ tree, basically what will be coming in the 2.6.33 merge, and what the status of the different drivers are so far.

Sorry it's late (after the merge), but hey, better late than never.

Again, drivers/staging/ is NOT a dumping ground for dead code. If no one steps up to maintain and work to get the code merged into the main portion of the kernel, the drivers will be removed.

Also, drivers can now be merged from mainling into the staging directory, providing a path out of the kernel for some obsolete and/or broken drivers.

So, here's some drivers that will be removed in the 2.6.33 kernel:

  • android drivers. Google and no one else stepped up to maintain them, so they will be dropped. So sad...

  • dst The developer isn't working on this anymore and recommended that it be removed as no one is using it.

Here is some new drivers that will show up in .33:

  • arlan, netwave, strip, wavelan - wireless drivers that are on their way out of the kernel. If anyone is actually using this old, obsolete hardware, speak up soon, otherwise they will be removed in a few kernel releases.

  • ramzswap - a compressed ram driver

  • rtl8192u - yet another wireless driver

  • samsung-laptop - laptop for the N128 Samsung laptop

  • batman-adv - a network protocol

  • dt3155 - a frame grabber driver

  • sm7xx - another frame buffer driver

Here's the list of drivers that have had work done on them that will show up in the .33 release:

  • comedi - lots of development effort happened here, mostly all cleanups, but there are some logic changes. More is needed, and it's moving along nicely.

  • line6 - lots of work happening, very nice to see

  • rt* - loads of cleanups and other merges. Will be obsolete soon due to a "real" wireless driver being worked on, but it's still nice to have these be a working alternative until then.

  • rtl* - more wireless driver work, horrible code, but it seems to work for the users. Hopefully more development time can be spent here in the new year.

  • dream - here's the platform specific code for the Android G1 platform. This might be the way the android code sneaks back into the kernel, as there is developers trying to get this to work. Of course, it's all happening without Google's help. {sigh}

  • et131x - loads of cleanups, more left to do. Good solid progress happening here.

  • iio - a new driver added to this subsystem, along with other fixes and cleanups. Looking nice.

  • poch - still some work happening, nice to see it pick back up.

  • panel - minor cleanups.

  • vme - cleanups and minor tweaks, still alive and kicking

  • vt66* - more wireless drivers, will be obsoleted by a "real" driver again.

  • wlags49 - more cleanup work as well.

Here's some drivers not listed so far, that have had work done recently, after the 2.6.33-rc1 merge happened, so it has to wait for the .34 kernel release:

  • wlan-ng

  • slicoss

  • mimo

  • asus_oled

  • udlfb

  • w35und

Hm, so, what's up with all of the other staging drivers, and why have they not had any development? What is the status of them? They are now on the short list to be deleted in 2 kernel releases, unless some real development happens on them.

This means, unless someone steps up and starts doing real work (not trivial spelling fixes) on the following drivers, they will be removed in the future kernel releases.

  • arlan, netwave, strip, wavelan - wireless drivers mentioned above that are on the way out. Slated for removal in 2.6.35

  • hv - Microsoft Hyper V drivers. The developers again seem to have disappeared, this is getting old. Slated for removal in 2.6.35

  • p9auth - this will be removed in .34 unless someone steps up.

  • frontier - slated for removal in .35. Will be easy for someone to pick up if they want to (hint, hint, hint)

  • altpciechdma - this will be removed in .34 unless someone steps up.

  • b3dfg - this will be removed in .34 unless someone steps up.

  • pohmelfs - filesystem under development out of tree, would be nice to get the patches merged back into here

  • quatechusb2 and serqtusb2 - usb to serial drivers that need to get merged into mainline.

  • rar and sep - Intel needs to step up here and get this code cleaned up properly, or it too will be removed in .34

Again, if someone is looking for some kernel development work to do, picking any of the above drivers up to get them merged into mainline, would be a great thing to do.

And, on a final, and sadder note, I'd like to announce the failure of the driver project to complete a driver for a company that requested it. This was totally my fault, and I would publically like to apologize about my lack of getting a SCSI driver written in time for a company that had asked for it. So, while the Linux driver project is doing great work for a large number of companies, every once in a while we do fail, we are only human.

posted Tue, 22 Dec 2009 in [/linux]


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