Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 25th Jun 2008 09:49 UTC
3D News, GL, DirectX Yesterday, we reported on the statement several kernel developers had signed that urged hardware manufacturers to open up their Linux modules and drivers. "We, the undersigned Linux kernel developers, consider any closed-source Linux kernel module or driver to be harmful and undesirable," the statement read. Nvidia, which delivers probably the most prominent closed-source Linux driver, has reiterated its position concerning this matter.
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People need a stable driver working CONSISTENTLY among various kernel versions, distros and hardware configurations. After a fight with my (quite old) NVidia 7600 card and its binary driver (on a still uncommon 64-bit/8GB system) I got back to OSS (plain 2D) driver, ceasing 3D completely in order to have a stable system. Graphic driver was the only binary-only part of my system and the only source of problems. And a major source of pain when upgrading.

The only way to get a device stable among various distros is to put driver code into mainline kernel and release full hardware documentation. Given enough eyes looking at it (and enough time from getting full docs to squash all bugs), community will fix the problem by itself. Just look how well Matrox cards are supported on Linux.

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