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Re: kern/51660: an(4) fails to load with Aironet 340 or 350

The following reply was made to PR kern/51660; it has been noted by GNATS.

From: Robert Elz <kre%munnari.OZ.AU@localhost>
Subject: Re: kern/51660: an(4) fails to load with Aironet 340 or 350
Date: Mon, 28 Nov 2016 13:17:42 +0700

 My impression has been that support for (at least wireless) pcmcia
 broke sometime back about NetBSD 2 or 3 (4?), when cardbus support was added.
 I used to have some of the original (Lucent?) wireless pcmcia cards
 (used the wi driver - the erliest running BSDi in pre NetBSD days)
 which as I recall (not a reliable source) was the only way to do wireless
 back then (there weren't even competing vendors originally as I remember it).
 They worked fine in my (at the time) pcmcia only laptop, and still when the
 laptop changed to one that supported cardbus and pcmcia via a bridge (but
 with NetBSD still only supporting pcmcia, which was no problem to me.)
 I think that laptop (if not that one, then the next) also had built in
 wireless, so the pcmcia cards (which were 802.11b only I think) started
 getting used a lot less, but sometime later (with the same laptop, same
 cards, NetBSD all the time, but a newer version) simply didn't work any more.
 (I had a few of the cards, so it wasn't just that the card broke.)
 Since need for pcmcia wireless was very rare by that time - and even rarer
 now, my last 2, maybe 3, laptops haven't supported it (that is, pcmcia/cardbus,
 unless there's some USB dongle I could plug in, not that I want to) at all -
 this never really seemed very important.
 Not sure if I ever filed a PR about it - maybe - but it would have been more
 than 10 years ago if I did, maybe closer to 15, maybe more - but by now if
 there was one it would have been closed (I presume) as relating to a long
 unsupported kernel.  [Actually I did: kern/39838 (only 8 years ago) - still
 open - and that one was about 4.99.73 but apparently goes back into earlier
 4.99.* versions, I just did a search for pcmcia related PRs, there are LOTS,
 many still open.]
 I never recall seeing anything committed that sounded like it would
 be a fix.  I no longer have any way to test this (no idea where the cards
 are, nor a working laptop that they could be plugged into.)
 Whether the problem applied to all pcmcia, or only cardbus/pcmcia bridges,
 or only those implemented in some odd way, or only to wireless cards (never
 used any other kind of pcmcia card in any serious way) I have no idea, the
 point of this message is just that I suspect this problem is a very very old

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