Why DDE BSD for audio?

Alexander Senier alex at ...331...
Wed Feb 1 00:30:51 CET 2017

Hi Josef,

I was expecting that kind of answer and I can feel the pain ;-) Thanks for the insight.


On 31.01.2017 14:13, Josef Söntgen wrote:
> Hello Alexander,
> * Alexander Senier <alex at ...331...> [2017-01-31 12:52:50 +0100]:
>> when looking into Genodes driver support, I was wondering about DDE
>> BSD. The audio_* ports seems to be its only use case. Is there any
>> (technical) justification for not porting audio drivers from Linux
>> using DDE Linux? With USB, WiFi and GMA there were much more complex
>> driver ported using DDE Linux after all...
> TL;DR personal preference lead to using OpenBSD for the x86 audio
> driver.
> Long story (with some ranting included):
> Generally speaking, porting drivers from OpenBSD is much easier than,
> for example, from Linux (at least in my experience). We take drivers
> from Linux mainly for two reasons:
>   1) We need support for devices that are only supported in Linux
>      (at the time that was true for iwlwifi MVM devices and for
>       GMA the DRM subsystem in the Linux driver is the de-facto
>       upstream branch, all other OS' used this base as well)
>   2) We are most experienced in porting drivers from Linux and
>      did so in the past (that is true in case of the USB driver)
> That being said, porting the audio drivers from OpenBSD was my personal
> decision. At the time we wanted to replace the aging OSSv4 based driver
> and at first I did so as a pet-project. After my experience with porting
> the wifi_drv from Linux, I was (and to some degree still am) fed up with
> Linux because it is a complex process to do so. What is more, with every
> update of dde_linux it gets more complicated because APIs change in
> subtile ways that we did not anticipated during the initial porting
> effort or other APIs are used, which leads to increased size of the
> Linux emulation environment. All in all the maintaince burden is high
> with ported Linux drivers — that is why we update them only if it is
> really necessary. This is the main reason I turned to OpenBSD. That and
> my dislike for ALSA.
> Regards
> Josef

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