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Linux 3.16 Will Detect If Your Dell Latitude Is Falling

Linux Kernel

Published on 11 June 2014 08:42 PM EDT
Written by Michael Larabel in Linux Kernel
20 Comments

Matthew Garrett sent in the x86 platform driver updates on Tuesday that are going into the Linux 3.16 kernel. This pull request is interesting for Dell Latitude laptop owners.

The new x86 platform driver pull adds the new dell-smo8800 driver, which provides Linux support finally with a freefall driver for several Dell Latitude models. This driver supports the SMO8800 and SMO8810 sensors found on several Latitude models that detect if the laptop is in a freefall (falling to the ground). The Dell implementation is ACPI-based and the driver registers /dev/freefall. This driver is compatible with the hp_accel freefall driver so any user-space application taking advantage of HP's freefall detection will also work with this Dell Linux support.

The freefall driver is beneficial for being able to suspend the disk or take other precautions if it's believed the laptop is physically falling. The sensors are basically accelerometers and can also be re-tasked for other non-standard purposes too with its open-source stack.

Linux 3.16 Will Detect If Your Dell Latitude Is Falling


The full list of x86 platform changes for Linux 3.16 can be found by Matthew's pull request.

About The Author
Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the web-site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience and being the largest web-site devoted to Linux hardware reviews, particularly for products relevant to Linux gamers and enthusiasts but also commonly reviewing servers/workstations and embedded Linux devices. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics hardware drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated testing software. He can be followed via and or contacted via .
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