HAL must die!

Svein Skogen (Listmail account) svein-listmail at stillbilde.net
Tue Mar 8 05:28:23 UTC 2011

On 08.03.2011 04:36, Ivan Voras wrote:
> On 7 March 2011 19:44, Lars Eighner <luvbeastie at larseighner.com> wrote:
>> On Mon, 7 Mar 2011, Ivan Voras wrote:
>>> On 06/03/2011 19:56, Lars Eighner wrote:
>>>> Using the -C switch with portupgrade, I am managing to turn WITH_HAL off
>>>> in
>>>> ports that I install or upgrade. Is there a way to make this a global
>>>> default?
>>>> Is there a (convenient) way to list ports that might pull in HAL without
>>>> having a configuration switch?
>>> Um, why exactly are so many people against HAL?
>> It breaks my mouse and keyboard.  I assume it would break other stuff if I
>> had esoteric devices.
>> with HAL = nothing works
>> without HAL = everything works
> Interesting, I had 0 problems with HAL ever since it was made.

But he does raise a valid problem (if more than zero users, etc). "We"
(I include fellow FreeBSD users, but also OSX and Linux users) do lack a
decent cross-platform device manager stack, with uniform device name
enumeration. DevFS (and its peers in Linux) does give us a start, but
not enough to build a system on. However, I suspect that getting this to
be truly cross-platform would take "a known name" in BSD-land,
OpenIndiana/Illumos and Cupertino agreeing with RMS that "making this
worth would be a nice summer-of-code project". Perhaps "AutoDevFS"
mounted on /autodev (names being picked from empty air with only
coffee-fumes). Such a framework would allow "drivers" to attach using
pipes, and thus allow (for instance) usb-upses to have python (or lua,
or <insert-name-of-interpreted-language-here) drivers, etc. "our world"
(unix-like world) hasn't had a truly common such stack since Bell Labs...

>>> It's the only cross-platform thing available for non-Linux systems which
>>> handles device enumeration, hotplugs, etc.
>> I'm not running a cross-platform.  I'm running FreeBSD.  There were native
>> FreeBSD solutions to hotplugging the devices I use before HAL.
> Good luck with running your FreeBSD with FreeBSD-only applications :)

I'm less of an OS cleric. I run windows, freebsd, openindiana, irix (my
old indy still works), and <insertdeity>knowswhat. Not because I like
being confused, but because I chose tools for the task at hand, not
tasks from what my (least) favourite os can('t) do. I still want
something that works, and if it brings a decent standard into the loop,
it will make me sleep a little better. Getting something to REPLACE HAL
with, something that actually works, would provide me with more rest.


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