A Multi-Year Effort Has Started To Better Document Intel's DRM/KMS Driver
Written by Michael Larabel in Intel on 3 October 2014 at 10:00 AM EDT. Add A Comment
One of the most frequent reasons we here when it comes developers not getting involved with the open-source Linux graphics driver development (or even just driver bug-fixing) comes down to the high barrier to entry due to a lack of comprehensive documentation, etc. As one step towards improving the driver documentation situation, Daniel Vetter has begun a long process of documenting the Intel (i915) DRM/KMS kernel driver.

The Swiss programmer wrote to the DRM kernel developers' list this week, "So I've decided that it's really time to (slowly) crawl through i915 and document everything. It's going to take years, but here's a start at least. I realize that this has good chances to create a constant stream of little conflicts all over. Well, so be it, I really think we need this."

In the process of writing the kernel documentation for the code, Daniel is cleaning up the driver's interfaces, putting the functions into a new file that is better organized, and then writing kernel documentation on the code -- including a short overview of the file.

Daniel's initial set of patches can be found via this mailing list thread though it covers just a small fraction of the driver's code-base with the full cleansing and documentation process expected to take years over many kernel cycles, given Daniel's workload with other Intel Linux driver tasks via the company's Open-Source Technology Center.
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Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com 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 OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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