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Re: VIA KT8266A + VIA VT8233A w/ AC97 sound

Alan Chandler wrote:

On Wednesday 02 October 2002 11:04 am, Robert Ian Smit wrote:
* D. Nathan Cookson <dorzak@earthlink.net> [02-10-2002 07:20]:
1 - Does anybody know from definitive experience the status of support
for the Via VT8233A southbridge in Debian kernels?
Compile a 2.4.19 kernel of your own. I had to do it bacause of a new
motherboard, was scared, but can recommend it. The reference manual,
chapter 7, has all the details. Getting .config right might be
tricky, so if you need more help on that, ask.

I am quite puzzled why a lot of people seem to think they need to compile their own kernels rather than use the debian standard ones. Debian kernels have nearly everything compiled as a module - so provided you get the modules loaded everything works - and you don't need to keep rebooting either


1) A lot of the documentation out there says to recompile the kernel in order to get X piece of hardware working, etc, so we dutifully follow the FM so we won't get flamed for not RTFM (in other words, documentation for Debian (Linux in general) is still spotty/immature),


2) When we try to install a new kernel using dselect, etc, we're warned that this is the "initrd" version and that we need to make sure we have done some prior step before using this kernel (or something similar) which actually sounds scarier than recompiling a kernel to some (in other words, documentation for Debian (Linux in general) is still spotty/immature).

In other words, "people seem to think they need to compile their own kernels rather than use the debian standard ones" for the simple reason that they don't know any better, and even if the correct information is "out there", it's mixed in with a lot of old, out-dated, other-distro-oriented, and simply wrong, info. There's not a whole lot that anyone can do about it; the developers are too busy writing code to write documentation for newbies, and the middle-grounders who could write the documentation don't have the understanding of the code to write authoritative documentation, and even if they do write it, the code changes so quickly in the Free Software world that that documenation quickly becomes dated.

Ideally, every package would have three persons/groups assigned to it: one to write the code, one to package it for Debian, and one to write very clear , multiply-expressed, example-filled, Debian-oriented documentation. But in a Bazaar (sp?) paradigm, that ain't likely to happen. And that's okay; that's the world we choose to live in when we came over to the Forces of Goodness :-)

And of course, I could be totally wrong. But that's why I've always compiled my own kernels. I started out because the documentation I was reading indicated that I needed to. Then later, when I decided to go with a stock Debian kernel, I got that warning something about the kernel being an initrd version (which could simply be the result of me being too ignorant to pick the correct stock Debian kernel, etc), so I figured I better stick with what I know works, which was compilation. So the two reasons given above actually boil down to one: ignorance on the part of the user. (Bummer, I seem to have just proven that I'm ignorant . . . . ) Until users stop being ignorant, they'll (we'll) keep sometimes making the less-than-best choices.


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