NetBSD Continues Long Overdue Push To Modernize Their WiFi Drivers

Written by Michael Larabel in BSD on 26 August 2021 at 02:30 PM EDT. 12 Comments
Started back in 2018 was an effort by the NetBSD project to update their operating system WiFi drivers by re-syncing more code from FreeBSD and making various improvements. Three years later the work has yet to be merged but after stalling for some time is back to being worked on by interested developers.

The WiFi renewal effort by NetBSD has been working to support newer WiFi standards, provide better SMP support, and handling other wireless networking features. The WiFi renewal effort was restarted last year though developer Martin Husemann noted the progress has slowed down a bit in recent months.

Many of the existing NetBSD WiFi drivers have been found to be a "fragile state" and various technical difficulties in the conversion to modernize these wireless drivers. The modernization work continues to be done off of mainline in its own WiFi renewal branch.

The current WiFI driver matrix shows just a subset of the drivers so far have been converted by this effort.

Husemann went on to note in today's status update that it's not clear when this branch will be merged or if it will make it for the upcoming NetBSD 10 branching/release.
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