Finally: More DRM Driver Documentation
Written by Michael Larabel in Linux Kernel on 1 June 2012 at 04:09 AM EDT. 5 Comments
A developer while working to create a Renesas SH Mobile DRM driver ended up writing a fairly thorough DRM kernel framework documentation for those looking to write these kernel GPU drivers.

Linux and open-source in general seems to have a problem with lacking high-quality developer documentation, but for the open-source GPU drivers when it comes to DRM, X.Org, and Mesa/Gallium3D it's even worse. There isn't much documentation at all so developers are really just forced to dive into the code, figure out the APIs, and hope it all works out. Or at least base their driver off a simple driver to get started.

Laurent Pinchart while writing a Renesas DRM driver ended up writing a fairly thorough DRM framework guide. It doesn't provide 100% coverage of the kernel's Direct Rendering Manager, but it appears better than some of the limited documentation that has been written in the past.

To ensure the documentation doesn't get out of date, he proposes that any patch from a developer that changes the API must be accompanied by updated documentation or else it won't be merged.

Those wishing to look at the documentation can find it on the mailing list. While this document was published on Wednesday, two days later no other upstream DRM developers have commented on it...

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Michael Larabel is the principal author of and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via

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