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From: Finn Thain <fthain@telegraphics.com.au>
To: Arnd Bergmann <arnd@kernel.org>
Cc: Linus Walleij <linus.walleij@linaro.org>,
	John Paul Adrian Glaubitz <glaubitz@physik.fu-berlin.de>,
	Gerhard Pircher <gerhard_pircher@gmx.net>,
	Arnd Bergmann <arnd@arndb.de>,
	Linux Kernel Mailing List <linux-kernel@vger.kernel.org>,
	linux-m68k <linux-m68k@lists.linux-m68k.org>,
	Sparc kernel list <sparclinux@vger.kernel.org>,
	Linux-sh list <linux-sh@vger.kernel.org>
Subject: New platforms: bring out your dead, was Re: Old platforms: bring out your dead
Date: Thu, 14 Jan 2021 14:54:04 +1100 (AEDT)
Message-ID: <alpine.LNX.2.23.453.2101141451370.7@nippy.intranet> (raw)
In-Reply-To: <CAK8P3a3hKSVXZEjQEbkOLhtAO0oR0+UP1dL10S3jQM72EsmsWA@mail.gmail.com>

On Wed, 13 Jan 2021, Arnd Bergmann wrote:

> 
> It's usually one of two things that happened before a platform gets
> deleted for good:
> 
> * The platform port was (almost) exclusively done by one company
>    with a commercial interest in it, and the company shifts its priorities
>    for some reason (acquisition, bankruptcy, product cancellation,
>    accidentally laying off all competent developers, ...) that causes it to
>    stop working on it. Sometimes the previously paid maintainers
>    keep up their upstream position, but without someone pushing the
>    last missing bits into an official release, users are stuck on an old
>    BSP kernel.
> 

Yes, that's the typical product life cycle. It presumes a short window of 
opportunity for sales (suggesting that demand is not organic).

Most vendors like to avoid having to compete with their own prior product 
lines. Hence the constrained lifespan that we get from devices with 
out-of-tree Linux ports.

AFAICS open source licenses cannot really prevent this (no matter how many 
freedoms the FSF would like to confer on people). However, consumer law 
could do it, if it were to disallow products which were not servicable.

> * A platform port is done in the open and actually works for upstream
>   users, but over time the last active maintainers move on in their
>   lives. Complex platforms inevitably break when a treewide change
>   goes wrong, so we rely on users that are able to bisect and report
>   bugs when they happen. 

And without bug reports, breakage gets leveraged into deletion, using the 
bogus argument that "broken" code is proof of zero potential users.

>   After a platform has been broken for too long, even competent users 
>   may decide to just give up and stay on their last working kernel. Some 
>   of these platforms eventually recover when a new maintainer steps up 
>   or someone discovers they depend on newer kernels for products, but 
>   after a few years it's usually beyond repair.
> 

So all a vendor has to do is make maintenance a bit too difficult for 
competent users e.g. by depriving them of access to existing 
documentation.

It was only a few decades ago that every applicance you bought came with a 
printed circuit schematic. These days, every device you buy comes with 
built-in obsolescence and a customer lock-in strategy.

>       Arnd
> 

  reply index

Thread overview: 120+ messages / expand[flat|nested]  mbox.gz  Atom feed  top
2021-01-08 22:55 Arnd Bergmann
2021-01-08 23:32 ` Steven Rostedt
2021-01-09 22:04   ` Arnd Bergmann
2021-01-08 23:44 ` Thomas Bogendoerfer
2021-01-09  0:16 ` Linus Walleij
2021-01-09 17:32   ` Florian Fainelli
2021-01-09 21:59   ` Arnd Bergmann
2021-01-09  5:56 ` Willy Tarreau
2021-01-09 21:52   ` Arnd Bergmann
2021-01-10  6:21     ` Willy Tarreau
2021-01-10 10:44       ` Russell King - ARM Linux admin
2021-01-11  9:50     ` David Laight
2021-01-13 10:27       ` Andy Shevchenko
2021-01-13 12:02         ` Linus Walleij
2021-01-13 12:17           ` Andy Shevchenko
2021-01-13 12:21             ` Andy Shevchenko
2021-01-15  0:03               ` Bernd Petrovitsch
2021-01-15  0:24                 ` William Breathitt Gray
2021-01-15  8:59                   ` David Laight
2021-01-13 12:30           ` William Breathitt Gray
2021-01-13 12:56             ` William Breathitt Gray
2021-01-13 13:44           ` Arnd Bergmann
2021-02-04 21:01         ` Pavel Machek
2021-02-05  9:13           ` David Laight
2021-02-05  9:29             ` Pavel Machek
2021-01-09 17:34 ` Florian Fainelli
2021-01-09 21:18   ` Arnd Bergmann
2021-01-09 17:43 ` Russell King - ARM Linux admin
2021-01-09 21:34   ` Arnd Bergmann
2021-01-11 20:09     ` Russell King - ARM Linux admin
2021-01-09 20:19 ` Baruch Siach
2021-01-09 21:19   ` Arnd Bergmann
     [not found] ` <67171E13-6786-4B44-A8C2-3302963B055F@gmail.com>
2021-01-09 22:20   ` Arnd Bergmann
2021-01-10 18:12     ` Fabian Vogt
2021-01-10 19:20       ` Arnd Bergmann
2021-01-10 21:33       ` Linus Walleij
2021-01-11  0:33         ` Russell King - ARM Linux admin
2021-01-11 12:32           ` Arnd Bergmann
2021-01-11 12:36             ` Russell King - ARM Linux admin
2021-01-09 23:12 ` Andrew Lunn
2021-01-10  8:45   ` Arnd Bergmann
2021-01-10 16:46     ` Andrew Lunn
2021-01-10 17:27       ` Arnd Bergmann
2021-01-10 19:51         ` Andrew Lunn
2021-01-10 15:51 ` Neil Armstrong
2021-01-10 15:56   ` Arnd Bergmann
2021-01-10 17:35 ` John Paul Adrian Glaubitz
2021-01-10 21:46   ` Sam Ravnborg
2021-01-11  8:05     ` John Paul Adrian Glaubitz
2021-01-11 14:55       ` chase rayfield
2021-01-12  0:26         ` Rob Landley
2021-01-12  0:50           ` chase rayfield
2021-01-12 14:37         ` John Paul Adrian Glaubitz
2021-01-11 18:09     ` Rob Landley
2021-01-11 15:04   ` Gerhard Pircher
2021-01-12 14:44     ` John Paul Adrian Glaubitz
2021-01-12 22:46       ` Linus Walleij
2021-01-13  8:09         ` Rob Landley
2021-01-13  8:21           ` Geert Uytterhoeven
2021-01-13 13:25             ` Rob Landley
2021-01-13 12:02           ` Andy Shevchenko
2021-01-13  8:15         ` Geert Uytterhoeven
2021-01-13 10:39         ` Arnd Bergmann
2021-01-14  3:54           ` Finn Thain [this message]
2021-01-14  9:41         ` John Paul Adrian Glaubitz
2021-01-14  9:48           ` Geert Uytterhoeven
2021-01-14 21:21           ` Arnd Bergmann
2021-01-14 22:54             ` Undesirable code, was Re: Old platforms etc Finn Thain
2021-01-14 23:09             ` Old platforms: bring out your dead Max Filippov
2021-01-15  8:31               ` Arnd Bergmann
2021-01-13  0:12       ` Old platforms never die, was " Finn Thain
2021-01-16  6:54         ` Rob Landley
2021-01-16 23:22           ` Finn Thain
2021-01-13 11:47       ` Andy Shevchenko
2021-01-11  1:39 ` Daniel Palmer
2021-01-11  9:15   ` John Paul Adrian Glaubitz
2021-01-11  9:20     ` Geert Uytterhoeven
2021-01-11  9:26       ` John Paul Adrian Glaubitz
2021-01-11  9:36         ` Geert Uytterhoeven
2021-01-11  9:50           ` Greg Ungerer
2021-01-11  9:42     ` Daniel Palmer
2021-01-11 10:13   ` Arnd Bergmann
2021-01-11  8:19 ` Geert Uytterhoeven
2021-01-11  8:59   ` Arnd Bergmann
2021-01-11  9:16     ` Geert Uytterhoeven
2021-01-11 10:28       ` Geert Uytterhoeven
2021-01-11 10:37         ` Arnd Bergmann
2021-01-11  9:40     ` Thomas Bogendoerfer
2021-01-11 10:34       ` Arnd Bergmann
2021-01-11  8:40 ` efm32 is dead [Was: Old platforms: bring out your dead] Uwe Kleine-König
2021-01-11 11:10 ` Old platforms: bring out your dead Viresh Kumar
2021-01-11 19:59   ` Arnd Bergmann
2021-01-11 21:15     ` Mattias Wallin
2021-01-11 21:47       ` Arnd Bergmann
2021-01-11 13:13 ` Marc Gonzalez
2021-01-11 17:29   ` Måns Rullgård
2021-01-11 21:50     ` Arnd Bergmann
2021-01-12  8:23       ` Marc Gonzalez
2021-01-11 14:22 ` Mark Salter
2021-01-11 15:00   ` Arnd Bergmann
2021-01-11 14:44 ` Alexander Shiyan
2021-01-11 14:58   ` Arnd Bergmann
2021-01-11 16:23 ` Sylvain Lemieux
2021-01-11 22:17   ` Alexandre Belloni
2021-01-11 19:58 ` Thomas Petazzoni
2021-01-11 20:10   ` Arnd Bergmann
2021-01-11 20:25 ` Song Bao Hua (Barry Song)
2021-01-12  8:41   ` Marc Gonzalez
2021-01-13 10:30 ` Andy Shevchenko
2021-01-13 11:02   ` Arnd Bergmann
2021-01-13 16:14 ` [v2] " Arnd Bergmann
2021-01-13 19:00   ` Krzysztof Hałasa
2021-01-14  8:51     ` Arnd Bergmann
2021-01-15  7:08   ` Wei Xu
2021-01-15  9:26     ` Arnd Bergmann
2021-01-15 11:09       ` Leizhen (ThunderTown)
2021-01-15 12:04         ` Arnd Bergmann
2021-01-18 10:46           ` Wei Xu
2021-01-13 22:27 ` Richard Z
2021-02-05 13:37 ` Alexander Lobakin

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