HALs considered harmful
Posted Mar 20, 2005 23:02 UTC (Sun) by salkin
Parent article: HALs considered harmful
If the purpose of all the HALs is for driver writers to be able to abstract away the differences between Linux, Windows, Solaris, et al, then perhaps the "Right Answer(tm)" is for someone to step up and write just one, single, good HAL. Having one HAL that was actively maintained through many product release cycles, used by many hardware vendors, etc. would remove the "orphaned code" problem and still let hardware vendors save some design and maintenance money . In fact it would make it a lot easier for them to decide to do a linux-native driver in the first place. And just one HAL in the kernel (as opposed to at least one per vendor) shouldn't be too big a headache. (Plus it could be tuned - the payoff would be there if many drivers used it.)
Obviously there are downsides, not least of which is that no such effort exists, and qualified and motivated developers would need to be found and organized. But the vendors have a strong motivation here, and money to save. Perhaps there is some traction there - to organize this development effort so that each vendor doesn't have to maintain their own HAL and can save on driver development costs.
to post comments)