brltty port to freebsd

florian millet millet_f at
Tue Oct 28 06:47:57 PST 2003


We are 3 developers on a project that consists to port the program
brltty (braille tty) to freebsd.
brltty currently works under linux (and under freebsd too but
with a
method that is not really clean).
Under linux it reads the devices /dev/vcs and /dev/vcsa that
give the
content of the current screen and sends it to the serial port
(or the
usb port) where a braille terminal is plugged.
What we want to do is to code the devices /dev/vcs and
/dev/vcsa under
freebsd that could allow brltty to function like under linux.

We have currently succeeded in compiling brltty under freebsd
4.7 and
5.1 with the "linux method" but we cannot run it because we
have not
yet coded the /dev/vcs and /dev/vcsa device drivers.

We have some questions regarding all those problems :
- 1 : brltty reads /dev/vcs or /dev/vcsa but does ioctls on
that also does not exist (at least with this name) under
freebsd, is
there an equivalent device that could allow us to make ioctls
on it to
know when something happens on the current screen ?

- 2 : the device drivers for vcs and vcsa use a function of the
console device driver that itself calls a function of the
screen driver that gives access to the video memory. We are
for an equivalent function in the kernel of freebsd to access
the video

- 3 : currently we have written a dummy-driver for vcsa that
creates a
/dev/vcsa device using the function (or system call I don't know)
make_dev and loads properly under 4.7 and 5.1 but doesn't under
5.1-CURRENT (as of 2003-10-26). The problem seems to come
from the
make_dev function that outputs "no such file or directory".
Any idea why
does this happen?

Thank you in advance for your answers.

Gregis Pascal & Ketterer Thibault & Millet Florian

P.S.: our mail addresses are :
kit at
florian.millet at
gregis_p at

More information about the freebsd-ports mailing list