how to encourage a wireless driver to exist?

Jerry jerry at
Mon Aug 18 23:57:58 UTC 2014

On Mon, 18 Aug 2014 19:31:21 -0400, Brendan Desmond stated:

>On 2014-08-17, dbc wrote:

>>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?
>>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.
>>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 are going to need more than just drivers. There is a virtual cornucopia of
new standards being released either now or within the near future. It tool
FreBSD nearly 10 years to support the "n" standard. It boggles the mind how
long it will be before they are able to support the newer protocols.

IEEE 802.11ac

IEEE 802.11ac-2013 is an amendment to IEEE 802.11, published in December
2013, that builds on 802.11n. Changes compared to 802.11n include wider
channels (80 or 160 MHz versus 40 MHz) in the 5 GHz band, more spatial
streams (up to eight versus four), higher order modulation (up to 256-QAM vs.
64-QAM), and the addition of Multi-user MIMO (MU-MIMO). As of October 2013,
high-end implementations support 80 MHz channels, three spatial streams, and
256-QAM, yielding a data rate of up to 433.3 Mbit/s per spatial stream, 1300
Mbit/s total, in 80 MHz channels in the 5 GHz band. Vendors have
announced plans to release so-called "Wave 2" devices with support for 160
MHz channels, four spatial streams, and MU-MIMO in 2014 and 2015.[20][21][22]

IEEE 802.11ad

IEEE 802.11ad is an amendment that defines a new physical layer for 802.11
networks to operate in the 60 GHz millimeter wave spectrum. This frequency
band has significantly different propagation characteristics than the 2.4 GHz
and 5 GHz bands where Wi-Fi networks operate. Products implementing the
802.11ad standard are being brought to market under the WiGig brand name. The
certification program is now being developed by the Wi-Fi Alliance instead of
the now defunct WiGig Alliance. The peak transmission rate of 802.11ad is

IEEE 802.11af

IEEE 802.11af, also referred to as "White-Fi" and "Super Wi-Fi", is an
amendment, approved in February 2014, that allows WLAN operation in TV white
space spectrum in the VHF and UHF bands between 54 and 790 MHz. It
uses cognitive radio technology to transmit on unused TV channels, with the
standard taking measures to limit interference for primary users, such as
analog TV, digital TV, and wireless microphones. Access points and
stations determine their position using a satellite positioning system such
as GPS and use the Internet to query a geolocation database (GDB) provided by
a regional regulatory agency to discover what frequency channels are
available for use at a given time and position. The physical layer uses
OFDM and is based on 802.11ac. The propagation path loss as well as the
attenuation by materials such as brick and concrete is lower in the UHF and
VHF bands than in the 2.4 and 5 GHz bands, which increases the possible
range. The frequency channels are 6 to 8 MHz wide, depending on the
regulatory domain. Up to four channels may be bonded in either one or two
contiguous blocks. MIMO operation is possible with up to four streams
used for either space–time block code (STBC) or multi-user (MU) operation.
The achievable data rate per spatial stream is 26.7 Mbit/s for 6 and 7 MHz
channels and 35.6 Mbit/s for 8 MHz channels. With four spatial streams
and four bonded channels, the maximum data rate is 426.7 Mbit/s for 6 and 7
MHz channels and 568.9 Mbit/s for 8 MHz channels.

IEEE 802.11ah

IEEE 802.11ah defines a WLAN system operating at sub 1 GHz license-exempt
bands, with final approval slated for March 2016. Due to the favorable
propagation characteristics of the low frequency spectra, 802.11ah can
provide improved transmission range compared with the conventional 802.11
WLANs operating in the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz bands. 802.11ah can be used for
various purposes including large scale sensor networks, extended range
hotspot, and outdoor Wi-Fi for cellular traffic offloading, whereas the
available bandwidth is relatively narrow.

IEEE 802.11ai

IEEE 802.11ai is an amendment to the 802.11 standard which will add new
mechanisms for a faster initial link setup time.

IEEE 802.11aj

IEEE 802.11aj is a rebanding of 802.11ad for use in the 45 GHz unlicensed
spectrum available in some regions of the world (specifically China).

IEEE 802.11aq

IEEE 802.11aq is an amendment to the 802.11 standard which will enable
pre-association discovery of services. This extends some of the mechanisms in
802.11u that enabled device discovery to further discover the services
running on a device, or provided by a network.

IEEE 802.11ax

IEEE 802.11ax is the successor to 802.11ac and will increase the efficiency
of WLAN networks. Currently at a very early stage of development this project
has the goal of providing 4x the throughput of 802.11ac

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