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Here's Another Intel Poulsbo Linux Driver...

Intel

Published on 20 October 2010 12:34 PM EDT
Written by Michael Larabel in Intel
5 Comments

Intel's Poulsbo Linux support is a bloody mess. It has been for nearly two years now and the situation has really not improved at all. While Intel IGPs are generally well supported under Linux with an open-source driver stack (besides being very slow), the Poulsbo hardware on Linux is notorious and does not have a fully open-source driver because the GMA 500 chipset is designed around the PowerVR SGX 535 graphics core from Imagination Technologies rather than being brewed in-house. The situation is really bad.

Even with MeeGo, Intel's mobile Linux OS formed out of marrying Moblin and Nokia's Maemo, the Poulsbo support still sucks with Intel not even being allowed to ship their own driver and they even admitting there are too many Poulsbo drivers with none of them being that good. The situation with Intel's newer Moorestown GMA 600 graphics is the same. While there's already enough incomplete Poulsbo Linux drivers out there, another one is available today.

Before getting too excited though, this Poulsbo driver is intended to just be a stub and really provides nothing besides enabling the ACPI backlight control sysfs entry files. That's it. This 80-line Linux kernel driver comes out of Novell by Chun-Yi Lee and is open-source, albeit it's incredibly simple and doesn't do much.

Those interested in this Poulsbo stub driver for Linux can find it currently on the dri-devel mailing list. It could end up being pushed into the mainline Linux 2.6.37 kernel albeit this isn't too helpful for those wanting 2D/3D/video support for the Intel GMA 500/600 in the Linux kernel.

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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