Razer HID Driver Coming To Linux 5.18 For Dealing With Non Spec Compliant Hardware

Written by Michael Larabel in Linux Kernel on 20 February 2022 at 09:49 AM EST. 8 Comments
Thanks to Red Hat engineer Jelle van der Waa, the hid-razer driver is set to be merged into Linux 5.18 next month for dealing with Razer hardware not complying with the HID standard.

Initially this hid-razer driver is focused on Razer BlackWidow keyboards. The BlackWidow keyboards aren't entirely compliant with the HID specification and their macro (M1 to M5) keys aren't properly handled. This new driver will ensure the macro keys are mapped to XF86tools and XF86Launch5.

There have been scripts and other already-used approaches for dealing with the BlackWidow macro keys on Linux while this is a proper kernel driver. This is being introduced as hid-razer and carries a Kconfig description of "Support for Razer devices that are not fully compliant with the HID standard" so moving forward other quirks/workarounds for other non-compliant devices will presumably be added.

The HID-razer driver was picked up into HID's "for-next" branch this week making it a new driver ready for introduction in Linux 5.18.

While Razer isn't currently providing any official support for their popular peripherals on Linux, thanks to the OpenRazer community project and related efforts like Polychromatic do allow for supporting and configuring many Razer devices on Linux.
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