Linux kernel 2.4 driver and firmware loading

Greg KH greg at
Wed Jul 16 19:24:27 UTC 2008

On Wed, Jul 16, 2008 at 12:08:59PM -0700, aubin labrosse wrote:
> Hi Greg,
> forgive me for a simple question, but i think the answer is really more
> complex than i can seem to find on google.  Am I correct that there is
> no "standard method" for loading firmware in 2.4?

That is correct.

> my company needs to
> write a driver for a specialized usb device which doesn't really fit
> into any of the kernel's usb subsets (ie it's not a nic, it's not a mass
> storage device, it's not a video device, etc - it's a usb spectrometer.
> This device needs specialized firmware to be loaded when it is plugged
> in.  My task is to figure out two things:

Then do what other usb drivers do in the 2.4 kernel.  There are numerous
examples of this already in the tree.

> 1) how do we load firmware onto the device when it is plugged in, in the
> 2.4 kernel?  I imagine it will be via /sbin/hotplug and the usb agent,
> based on the vendor id of the device, right? but since each device is
> probably different with respect to how to load the firmware i'm guessing
> we need a custom tool that gets called by hotplug, yes?, and,
> 2) what's the best way to go about writing a driver for a usb device
> which doesn't fit into any of the other subsystems of the kernel? what i
> mean is, from my (very limited) kernel experience, the usb drivers seem
> to have two parts somewhat, a usb part, and then a device subsystem part
> (ie the nic part, the video part, the mass storage part etc)
>  - but as i'm rather certain the vanilla kernel doesn't have a
> spectrometry subsystem ( ;-) ) i guess we have to do everything
> "manually", of course, yes?  what are good drivers to look at in the 2.4
> tree?

For 2.4, I really don't know, and honestly don't care due to the fact
that the 2.4 kernel is not under any kind of development, not supported
by any distributor.  If you use 2.4, you are on your own, sorry.

good luck,

greg k-h

More information about the devel mailing list