Some sites are reporting that the Nouveau driver (a reverse-engineered 3D
driver for NVIDIA hardware) will be merged for 2.6.33. It is worth
pointing out that this has not (yet) happened. Here's what has happened:
the posting of the DRM tree
for 2.6.33 drew a complaint from Linus
Nouveau was not there. A long discussion followed, culminating in the
posting of a "Nouveau pony"
. Linus may yet pull that tree, but it's worth noting that it's
not a complete solution.
As was discussed at the 2009
Kernel Summit, NVIDIA hardware requires the downloading of a large binary
blob to function. This blob was taken from NVIDIA's proprietary drivers.
Nobody really knows what it is (though most guess that it is firmware), and
nobody knows what sort of copyright restrictions might apply to it. So,
for now, nobody's really willing to sign off on it for merging into the
mainline. As a result, this blob is not part of the new tree; potential
users will have to obtain it separately. Even this way, though, the
merging of Nouveau would make it more visible and, hopefully, encourage
more testing and development.
Update: Linus did pull the Nouveau tree into the mainline.
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