Nintendo Switch Controller Driver, Sony PS5 Controller Improvements Come For Linux 5.16

Written by Michael Larabel in Hardware on 5 November 2021 at 09:21 AM EDT. 4 Comments
The HID subsystem updates have been sent in for the ongoing Linux 5.16 merge window with some notable improvements for Linux gamers.

As written about at the end of last month, the Nintendo Switch controller driver is finally landing! This kernel driver enables the Nintendo Switch Pro and Nintendo Switch Joy-Con controllers to now work with the mainline kernel. Both USB and Bluetooth connectivity is supported. Features like rumble mode, LEDs, and other functionality is working for these Joy-Cons / Pro controllers.

This open-source Nintendo Switch controller driver is not from Nintendo but rather the free software community via reverse-engineering.

Meanwhile, Sony has contributed improvements to their HID kernel driver supporting the PlayStation 5 DualSense controller.

At the end of last year Sony published an official PS5 controller driver for Linux. That driver was added to Linux 5.12 and they continue working on the code. For Linux 5.16, there are LED handling improvements for the Sony PlayStation 5 controller support submitted by Sony's Roderick Colenbrander.

Another notable HID addition this cycle is support for the Apple Magic Keyboard 2021 model now being in place for that open-source HID driver not officially supported by Apple.

Linux 5.16 HID also adds support for the NitroKey FIDO U2F. This heavy set of HID changes for Linux 5.16 was submitted this morning via this pull request.
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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 20,000 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, LinkedIn, or contacted via

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