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Re: [why is kernel recompilation necessary?]

By reasoning I would assume that all the kernel has is a 'generic module
hook' that you can load any module into. Therefore, your sequence above
should work. If it did not, how would you be able to use binary only
modules such as the lucent winmodem driver?

So in answer to your questions:

Kent West wrote:
> When you do a "make menuconfig" (or one of the other methods), and you
> specify to include support for, say, a 3c905 NIC, as a module, are you
> doing anything to the kernel, or are you just making changes to a script
> to tell it to compile the module?

You're making changes to a script. Of course, you have to compile module
support into the kernel as well, otherwise it won't be able to load any

> In still other words, can you do the following?
>   * use "make menuconfig" today to specify kernel options for a minimal
> kernel, and not mark module stuff like NICs and sound cards, etc,
>   * then "make dep" and "make zImage" to compile the kernel,
>   * then boot off that kernel and run for a day or two
>   * then come back in a day or two and re-run "make menuconfig" and
> specify some modules
>   * then "make modules" and "make modules_install" without compiling the
> kernel
>   * resulting in a working kernel that can use the modules compiled a
> day or two later

As long as you say yes to module support, yes.

> In still other words, can you use "make menuconfig" to compile a minimal
> kernel and then add modules later from whatever source even though you
> didn't tell the kernel to expect these modules when you did the "make
> menuconfig".

Yes. That's how binary-only modules work.


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