A way to encour­age hard­ware com­pa­nies to sup­port *BSD

In multimedia@ we have a dis­cus­sion about the envy24* chips. One ques­tion is how to con­vince com­pa­nies to pro­vide some tech­ni­cal infor­ma­tion or at least free hard­ware sam­ples. As part of the answer I point­ed to http://www.bsdstats.org/ which may be able to pro­vide some num­bers (e.g. envy24* chips with­out a match­ing dri­ver) which may help in nego­ti­at­ing some stuff with a com­pa­ny. Unfor­tu­nate­ly not many envy24 chips show up there. Part of the prob­lem may be that not enough peo­ple run the bsd­stats port (and enable peri­od­ic report­ing of at least the devices).

So do you have any unsup­port­ed hard­ware (not only lim­it­ed to sound­cards) or some hard­ware which is still up-to-date but lacks some fea­tures in the dri­ver (this is at least the case for all recent sound­cards like envy24* or HDA based ones)? Fine, run bsd­stats and enable the peri­od­ic report­ing. Maybe we are able to get enough num­bers to show to com­pa­nies so that they think it would be finan­cial­ly ben­e­fi­cial to sup­port us in some way (free hard­ware, docs, tech­ni­cal hints, what­ev­er).

Oh… while we are at it, the ALSA peo­ple added sup­port for some envy24 based cards based upon the reverse engi­neer­ing effort which was need­ed to write our dri­ver as it is now. So if you are work­ing for a com­pa­ny and read­ing this: if you sup­port us, you get the Lin­ux stuff for free too. 🙂 And as an addi­tion­al bonus, you can show a work­ing dri­ver with­out any bad legal strings (e.g. GPL infec­tion) to OEMs. So go and cal­cu­late how much sales you can do with embed­ded stuff and come back to us with some tech­ni­cal hints and/or free hard­ware (it costs some few bucks for you to pro­vide this: not much if it fails but a large amount of return if it works out).

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