coreboot® is running on a multitude of different computers, ranging from tiny embedded systems as small as the palm of your hand over desktop and server systems to super computers with thousands of nodes. However, one might say that in the area of mobile computers coreboot has to catch up, compared to its support of other devices.
Thus, I am especially glad to announce that coresystems GmbH is releasing coreboot® for the Roda RK886EX a.k.a Rocky III+ notebook today. It's a rugged notebook, protected against shock, vibration, dust and humidity:
We have been testing various Linux distributions as well as Windows XP and Windows 7 booting on this nice notebook.
I want to sincerely thank those who made this project possible with their funding:
- secunet Security Networks AG
- Bundesamt für Sicherheit in der Informationstechnologie (Federal Office for Information Security, BSI)
A big thank you also goes to everyone who worked with coresystems on this project.
The committed patch series includes improved support for the Intel i945 / ICH7 chipset (which was also written by coresystems), the SMSC LPC47N227 Super I/O, the Texas Instruments Cardbus+Firewire bridge TI PCI7420, and finally the Renesas M3885x Embedded Controller (EC).
Btw, the latter, the so-called embedded controller (sometimes integrated in the Super I/O, sometimes it's an extra chip) is one of the major problems for coreboot support on laptops. They are almost always undocumented (i.e., no public datasheets are available), but they have low-level control over power/battery management, early power-up sequence, and often include keyboard controller functionality and other important stuff. Luckily, for this notebook an EC datasheet is available. Checkout the coreboot EC support code for the Renesas M3885x for an impression of what this stuff is all about.
Anyway, there is hope that this laptop will only be the first in a row of multiple supported ones in the future. Interested developers and contributors are of course always welcome on the coreboot mailing list :-)