Harald Welte laforge at
Wed Mar 14 16:43:26 CET 2007

On Tue, Mar 13, 2007 at 06:35:36PM +0100, Imre Kaloz wrote:
> Hello Sean,
> > 1) We can't find a WiFi Chipset with GPL'ed drivers -- We know
> >  this has been discussed (to death) on this list, but as we're
> >  beginning work on the next summer hardware refresh we still can't seem
> >  to find a vendor that meets our strict requirements: Namely, we refuse
> >  to put anything binary in the kernel.
> >
> >  Marvell has some nice for larger devices (the 8388). But we need
> >  one specifically for mobile phones (like the 8686). If somebody
> >  can help us find the right vendor, we'll give you a free Neo1973.
> > If you're a vendor and want to work with us to GPL your driver, we'll
> >  give you lots of business -- and a free phone ;-)
> Atheros AR6K - check , and for  
> the fully GPL'ed driver and SDIO stack please check  

This really sounds like a viable chipset.  

I have had a look at the SDIO stack before, but did not realize (and
thus not look at) the accompanied ar6k driver.

However, I really trust Imre as probably one of the most competent folks
in this area, both from the GPL licensing and from the WiFi side.

Imre: Have you looked at the code?  Are there any hidden proprietary
bits anywhere?  Do you actually have any first-hand usage experience
with ar6k and/or the drivers?

Now if that chipset and driver are really suitable, we still need to
find somebody who produces something like a FPC or SMT module that we
can easily add to our existing design (and the designs we have in the

Sean: Can you please [have somebody at FIC] contact atheros if they have
any partner that offers SMT module or other really easily integratable
modules using their ar6k chip?

- Harald Welte <laforge at>         
Software for the world's first truly open Free Software mobile phone

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