Two Decades Late: Mainline Linux Kernel Getting Keyboard / Mouse Driver For SGI Octane
Written by Michael Larabel in Hardware on 24 January 2020 at 02:03 AM EST. 41 Comments
The MIPS-based SGI Octane IRIX workstations were first introduced in the late 90's while recently there has been a resurgence in the work on getting these vintage PCs running off a mainline Linux kernel.

For Linux 5.5 is initial mainline support for the SGI Octane systems two decades after they launched. We've also been seeing other driver work come about now that the Octane support is in place.

The latest in the support conquest for the SGI Octane on Linux is... a keyboard/mouse driver. Queued as part of the input subsystem updates for the upcoming Linux 5.6 is support for a keyboard and/or mouse with the SGI Octane as well as SGI Onyx2 and the IC3 PCI card. The SGI Onyx2 is a similar vintage to the Octane in being from the late 90's, MIPS based, and then discontinued since 2003.

The 200+ lines of code driver was written by SUSE's Thomas Bogendoerfer who is also responsible for the other Octane fun hitting the mainline Linux kernel.

Is this a sign of kernel bloat in bringing up two decade old hardware or do you enjoy seeing these drivers make it into the mainline tree since they can be easily disabled at build-time?
Related News
About The Author
Author picture

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 or contacted via

Popular News This Week