how to encourage a wireless driver to exist?

Roland Smith rsmith at
Sun Aug 17 08:54:06 UTC 2014

On Sun, Aug 17, 2014 at 03:24:27PM +1000, dbc wrote:
> Hello,
> I have a new laptop which I'm well sick of having to run linux on. Is there
> a way to encourage someone to write a driver for intel 7260 wifi card?

You might want to ask on the freebsd-wireless list. But I think Cedric Gross
is working on it.

> I am a C programmer, and I would be willing to volunteer time, but I don't
> know how useful I will be with neither driver writing nor wifi protocol nor
> FreeBSD development process experience. Still, if anyone would point me in
> the right direction I would happily give it a shot. Where can this stuff be
> learnt? I also see that linux drivers exist, but I'm not sure about legal
> problems when copying from those.

There is a github repo;

The Linux and FreeBSD kernels are quite different internally. So just copying
code would be useless.

And Linux kernel code is under the GPL, which AFAIK is not acceptable in the
FreeBSD base system.

What is usually done is study how the Linux driver works, and re-implement it
in the way FreeBSD drivers are written. You can study existing drivers as
references. You should consider joining the freebsd-hackers list if you start
working on FreeBSD code.

The standard book about the internals of FreeBSD is;

    Marshall Kirk McKusick, George V. Neville-Neil
    The Design and Implementation of the FreeBSD Operating System.
    Boston, Mass. : Addison-Wesley, 2004. ISBN 0-201-70245-2

Marshall Kirk McKusick teaches courses about the internals of FreeBSD. IIRC
you can order videos of them online.

See also

> Or, while I probably couldn't afford to fund it entirely myself, is there a
> way I could chip into a pot to help fund someone with more experience to at
> least make a start on it?

You can always make a donation;

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