Subject: Re: LKM Device Drivers
To: Jared D. McNeill <>
From: Bill Studenmund <>
List: tech-kern
Date: 04/12/2002 17:17:36
On Fri, 12 Apr 2002, Jared D. McNeill wrote:

> I'm currently working on LKM device driver support, but am running into
> some problems. The biggest problem is that I can't load dependencies with
> the way LKMs are currently handled. Consider the following:
>  modload mii.o
>  modload mii_bitbang.o
>  modload mii_phy.o
>  modload nsphy.o
>  modload if_ex_pci.o
> if_ex_pci.o depends on functions found in the other modules, but without
> an in-kernel linker, I have no way of doing this easily.
> So, the solution that I'm using right now, is chainloading a copy of each
> dependency with each driver. I wrote a script that uses modstat and
> proper use of the -A and -o flags to load a driver and any dependencies
> specified on the command line.
> Any ideas on a better way to do this? I don't know if I am up for adding
> an in-kernel linker quite yet..

One intermediate step would be to add something like /dev/ksym from
Solaris (which I don't know much about). The main thing is to add a way
for the kernel to:

1) export its symbol table to userland

2) have the symbol table grow as lkms are added (and shrink when they

3) have userland tools use said new device

Take care,