IRILL - Research and Innovation on Free Software

Hardware Support In Debian Stable

"Hardware Support In Debian Stable"
by Ben Hutchings,
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The long freezes that we currently have before release result in a kernel that is outdated even at the time of release.  Supporting Debian on new hardware requires backporting driver changes or completely updating drivers to a newer version, with the consequent risk of regressions for already supported hardware.  Currently, we seem to be covering most Ethernet controllers and SCSI controllers found in servers.  But Debian stable typically does not support newer wifi controllers and GPUs, as changes to these drivers are often entangles with changes to the kernel subsystem.  For those, you need to use stable-backports or testing, neither of which receives the same level of support (e.g. security) as stable. In short, Debian currently does not appear to be a usable operating system for a non-technical user with a new desktop or laptop.  How can we fix this?