[Intel-gfx] FreeBSD i915 driver update

Jani Nikula jani.nikula at linux.intel.com
Fri May 13 07:34:59 UTC 2016

On Fri, 13 May 2016, Scott Long <scottl at netflix.com> wrote:
> Jean-S├ębastien and other developers have been discussing a new approach
> for post-3.8.13 updates. Instead of maintaining a large set of changes,
> the plan is to keep the driver as close as possible to the upstream Linux
> version, and use straightforward shims to adapt to interfaces provided by
> FreeBSD where possible.

FWIW, I think this is likely the only viable option.

The i915 driver is a fast moving target, and I have witnessed the
struggles of full time paid developers backporting and forward porting
drm and i915 features from Linux kernel version to another. It is not a
trivial task. Last I checked, the Linux driver backports project has
also given up backporting latest drm drivers to stable kernel versions.

I don't have any FreeBSD experience and I don't know what kind of team
of developers you have, but it is my educated guess that you'll have
plenty of more productive things to do than trying to maintain a
significant amount of delta with upstream while also trying to stay

> Our ultimate goal is to align closely with the Linux graphics
> development community and collaborate with Intel, ATI, and others on
> keeping FreeBSD up to date in their product development efforts.

The focus and priority of the i915 driver is obviously Linux, but I
don't see us rejecting patches that help FreeBSD if the patches
generally make sense and don't interfere with the main priority.

Good luck with your efforts!


Jani Nikula, Intel Open Source Technology Center

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