What I don't get is why does an Intel customer need Intel to certify a device driver, but none of the rest of the system? In the kernel alone, more than half the code that has to work right for the customer to successfully exploit the Intel product is not part of the driver in question. Who certifies the rest of Linux? It's always been my impression that using Linux and getting performance guarantees are dichotomous.
So I agree that what a company in Intel's position should do is simply design to and test with a particular entire system configuration (driver, kernel, middleware, applications, ...) and advertise those particular test results and leave the customer to do what he always does with Linux -- try to stick close to that configuration, and assume the risk of breakage.
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