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LVFS/Fwupd Ponders 2025 Plans: Servers, Desktop Motherboards & More

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  • LVFS/Fwupd Ponders 2025 Plans: Servers, Desktop Motherboards & More

    Phoronix: LVFS/Fwupd Ponders 2025 Plans: Servers, Desktop Motherboards & More

    Richard Hughes of Red Hat who leads development of the Linux Vendor Firmware Service (LVFS) and Fwupd firmware updating utility is currently pondering plans for 2025. Among the ideas he's seeking input from the community is on whether the main focus should be on servers, desktop motherboards, laptops, or other removable hardware/peripherals...

    Phoronix, Linux Hardware Reviews, Linux hardware benchmarks, Linux server benchmarks, Linux benchmarking, Desktop Linux, Linux performance, Open Source graphics, Linux How To, Ubuntu benchmarks, Ubuntu hardware, Phoronix Test Suite

  • #2
    This is such an innovative service!

    On some other platforms users would need to be somehow aware of new firmware updates, manually download them and often follow multi-step instructions for applying them.

    I often wonder if it is just not possible to write an Fwupd equivalent for those or if the platform developers simply don't care about easy updates.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by anda_skoa View Post
      I often wonder if it is just not possible to write an Fwupd equivalent for those or if the platform developers simply don't care about easy updates.
      Windows supports deploying BIOS updates (or more precisely UEFI capsules) via Windows Update, and from my experience HP uses that for at least their laptops.

      However targeting mainstream desktop motherboards is quite awkward since basically every one I've worked on completely reset BIOS settings when the BIOS was updated. This is not acceptable from the user perspective, and certainly not acceptable for unattended updates.

      On the other hand professional desktops like Dell Optiplex or HP laptops do not have this problem - they preserve BIOS settings on updates.

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      • #4
        I assume most enthusiasts will prefer focus on desktop/laptops and not servers. But to be honest, I do not really care about the type of system, and more about the vendors pulling the sticks out of their arses and joining.

        It should become a common thing to support LVFS for all major hardware, as it is something that actively pushes against the security nightmare that is embedded firmware and binary blobs.

        I'd also love to have some mechanism that does not scare of the vendors but allows some community integration. Like configurable repositories where there is a community-repository (managed by someone else) that has alternative firmware and implementations.

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        • #5
          I would like to have support for motherboard firmware updates from vendors such as ASUS. Possibly in a unofficial 3rd party repo if the vendor itself doesn't want to support it.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by numacross View Post
            However targeting mainstream desktop motherboards is quite awkward since basically every one I've worked on completely reset BIOS settings when the BIOS was updated. This is not acceptable from the user perspective, and certainly not acceptable for unattended updates.
            I dread motherboard firmware updates because of that handy not-a-feature. I'd be pissed if my home desktop auto-updated the BIOS before I got a chance to make a copy of my changed settings.

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            • #7
              Same as many, motherboard firmware updates from main vendors (including sound card, network etc) is the most needed.
              The main blocker is not the tool itself but the lack of adhesion from these key companies who still prefer delivering their firmwares through crapy support webpages with messy zip and rar files installers, often for Windows only.

              I already said, getting LVFS to become UFS for universal firmware services and convince Microsoft to adopt it for Windows too, would be the ultimate way to skyrocket the value of it because overnight, everyone would adhere.
              Since firmwares are the same blob whatever is the OS, that would be completely doable, and since Windows doesn't have a clean centralized way to update firmwares, and since they LOOOVE open source, they may be actually interested.

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              • #8
                I mean yes would be cool to update my at home stuff with this but my laptop gets an updated every 3-6months? And I suspect no more soon. But there's a billion desktops and laptops in use with sooo many varieties and poorly made stuff can get bricked. So this is a big win with a large chance of getting big problems too.

                Using a broad mix of server vendors at work that all have an equally broad number of ways of updating their BIOS and BMC and NIC and HDD and RAID controller firmware and FC and etc, all being different enough to require a matrix of ways of ensuring a fleet of servers is updated..I personally think having fwupd with with <HP/Dell/SM/IBM/etc> firmware stacks, at least the bios/bmc and out of band access stuff all be updated in a single way would be a big win. Good lord that would replace a lot of tooling we have, since bios updates can be frequent on enterprise servers for the first few years (longer if you have a longer contract). This makes linux admins/operators at scale happy but lets face it, our companies will pay us to keep writing glue automation around the disparate competing update methods.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by anda_skoa View Post
                  This is such an innovative service!

                  On some other platforms users would need to be somehow aware of new firmware updates, manually download them and often follow multi-step instructions for applying them.

                  I often wonder if it is just not possible to write an Fwupd equivalent for those or if the platform developers simply don't care about easy updates.
                  Maybe you could delve into https://lvfs.readthedocs.io/en/latest/offline.html

                  "The local.py script allows you to create the metadata for a directory of .cab files.‚Äč"

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                  • #10
                    Would be possible to overtake the "capsules unsupported" limitation?

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