System76: System76 and LVFS – what really happened

Re: this is the Sytem76 side of the story:

The Future of Firmware

LVFS and UpdateCapsule might be okay for companies mostly focused on a proprietary future (Logitech, Dell, etc.). UpdateCapsule is not the technique companies will use in a future of open source firmware—the future we’re working toward. Liberating firmware is going to be a long and challenging process. Much like Free Software has replaced proprietary software over time, we must chip away at the proprietary firmware pieces within the hardware supply chain. Manufacturing is the first step. This year we’ll manufacture open source desktop designs in our Denver plant. The CAD will be free to download, change, and produce. There will be a separate, open source electrical design and open source firmware daughter board to control functions within the desktop. On a mainboard there is the BIOS chip and one or more embedded controllers that manage fans, keyboard, LEDs, hotkeys and other critical functions. It’s all proprietary. Our strategy is to move this functionality from the proprietary mainboard to the open source daughter board. Then anyone can create a PCB with basic computer functionality, understand how it works, and improve upon the work. One could have this PCB made at Osh Park, install it in their desktop, tune it, and replace a bunch of proprietary firmware instantly. We’ll grow from there. Slowly we’ll chip away at more and more of the mainboard functions until what’s left is Intel and AMD bits. Then there’s the challenge of convincing them to go open. There’s room for cautious optimism.[…]

Who is working to fix (unify) Linux firmware solutions? UEFI Forum? Linux Foundation? I don’t see a single OEM (eg, System76) driving any such standardization. … 😦

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