Wifi drivers in Sculpt OS

Stefan Kalkowski stefan.kalkowski at genode-labs.com
Fri Jan 24 08:34:33 CET 2020

Hello Colin,

On Thu, Jan 23, 2020 at 10:17:26PM -0500, Colin Parker wrote:
> Hello,
>    I am new to Genode/Sculpt and have been trying to get it working on my
> somewhat old Mac Mini. I eventually succeeded to make it boot, by disabling
> some unnecessary drivers like PS2.

wow, that's cool to hear.

> However, wifi doesn't work, and I would
> like that feature. There is an internal wifi card in the computer that
> doesn't work on Linux, so I bought a USB dongle that I've been using (with
> Linux). From looking at some of the source, it seems most of the drivers
> are brought in from Linux, but, I'm not sure if or how wifi usb is
> supported. There's a usb_net.list but I can't figure out if it includes
> wifi. Is this something that would be easy to add? Is bringing drivers over
> a pretty simple process like copying a few files or is it an extensive
> effort? Thanks in advance for your suggestions.

The wifi driver available in Genode is a port of the Intel's wifi driver
in Linux. So, it supports Intel wifi cards only. This is due to
the fact that most developers at Genode Labs use some Thinkpad laptop,
which typically use Intel peripherals.

The USB net driver supports a bunch of USB-Ethernet cards, but no wifi

Coming to your question: I'm afraid it is no easy task to just add
some other wifi driver. Depending on the kind of device, porting a
driver from the Linux kernel can become a quite extensive work. The
effort for the first Intel wifi driver port for instance was 3
person-month or above, when I remember correctly. Of course, it would
be probably easier to enable a USB-Wifi device, which uses an Intel
chipset already supported. But I'm not aware of such a device.
Porting a completely new wifi chipset - potentially connected via USB
- might be easier today, because one can use the existent USB-device
  and Intel wifi port to look at, but it is definitely much more than
just copying a few files.

Probably, my colleague Josef Söntgen will have a more professional
assessment, because he ported the wifi driver, but I'm afraid there is
no easy solution.

Best regards

> Colin

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Stefan Kalkowski
Genode labs

https://github.com.skalk | https://genode.org

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