Subject: Re: Miscellaneous OS features
To: Bruce J.A. Nourish <email@example.com>
From: Gary Thorpe <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: 08/03/2003 15:34:32
--- "Bruce J.A. Nourish" <email@example.com> wrote: > Hey
> I've been reading lots of stuff in the mailing list archives, and
> up with a few related questions, which I'd like to ask here.
> Basically, each question is about a certain feature NetBSD could
> I'd like to know if a) it's already done and I've missed it, b) it's
> been excluded deliberately or c) it would be welcomed, but nobody has
> done it yet.
> Note that this is not a "NetBSD sux 'cos it doesn't have X" troll,
> just trying to get information I couldn't get from Google. I'm
> particularly interested to hear about things done in other OSs that
> have purposely not been done here for design reasons.
> * Generic parallel bus archetecture
> Factoring out the code to drive the parallel port from the code to
> manage a printer seems to be the right thing to do. On a practical
> note, it would alow people to use Parallel ZIP drives/IDE drives,
> PLIP, and bi-di printer support.
Actually, I have been working on porting ppbus (in FreeBSD) to NetBSD
and I have printing working for standard modes and fast centronics mode
(this is all I can test because the printer I have cannot do EPP, ECP,
or byte mode, nibble mode seems to work). This (ppbus) has actually
been ported into NetBSD before, but it was either machine specific
(acorn and a pc-like architecture I think) or otherwise inappropriate.
I have no idea if it is welcomed or not but I would like to know
whether I should continue to work on it if it has a chance of being
integrated (ppbus in my port is MI and should work on anything that can
provide some interface to a parallel port).
This would be a very big change as there are a lot of ad hoc lpt
devices (ulpt, bpp on sparc, lpt on pucs/isa/miscellaneous buses) that
would need to be changed to use a ppbus framework. It would allow
modern printing support, IEEE 1284 support, and other miscellaneous
parallel devices like plip and zip/cdrom drives.
> * Kernel managed screen blanking
> Linux and FreeBSD both manage screen blanking in-kernel, where the
> terminal emulation code can easily see how long a terminal has been
> idle. In NetBSD, we use a user-space system that frankly doesn't
> work (I forget the pr number).
> * VESA 2.0 framebuffer on i386
> * Cute console screensavers :-)
> A la FreeBSD.
> * FreeBSD's jail(2) feature
> This seems to be a useful tool in the wild: a recent Netcraft
> made the point that an increasing number of websites are served by
> shared hosting, and that FreeBSD was notably popular in this
> Bruce J.A. Nourish <bjan+JUNK@bjan.net>
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