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Re: GSoC'09: ATA over Ethernet

On Thu, Mar 26, 2009 at 12:17:58PM +0100, Per Hermansson wrote:
> Hi
> My name is Per Hermansson and I'm a student from the Royal institute of  
> technology in Sweden. I'm interested in the ATA over Ethernet project  
> idea. Learning to write an initiator for NetBSD seems like a challenging  
> task and a good introduction to open source programming (though I'm not  
> sure if I'm experienced enough). I have some initial questions about the  
> idea that I hope someone here can answer:
> As I understand writing the initiator involves both writing a kernel  
> driver and a client program for communication (for discovering and  
> establishment) is this correct?

Probably. Or maybe it can be written on top of FUSE, like the iscsi
Implementing it in the kernel means we can reuse most of the existing ATA
layer, which is a good point. atactl and smartmontools would probably work
out of the box too.
But a all-userland implementation has its avantages too.

> The kernel driver will be written in C but what about the client program?

Most probably in C too.

> I consider myself to be experienced in both C and C++ but first time  
> kernel development seems like a large step to make. Do you recommend any  
> literature or any other help that might reduce the gap?
> Which of the existing network device drivers would you recommend for  
> inspiration when I estimate the difficulty. For example a AoE driver  
> would do some similar work compared to the tap driver.

Not really. tap is a network interface which behaves like a ethernet device.
AoE would be a client of an ethernet device (eventually a tap driver,
or some other ethernet driver). AoE is more like pppoe(4).

Manuel Bouyer <>
     NetBSD: 26 ans d'experience feront toujours la difference

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