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"Linux Device Drivers, Third Edition": Where the Kernel Meets the Hardware

March 2, 2005

Sebastopol, CA--Writing device drivers is one of the few areas of programming for the Linux operating system that calls for kernel-specific knowledge. And device drivers literally drive everything you're interested in--disks, monitors, keyboards, modems--everything outside the computer chip and memory. For years now, programmers have relied on the classic Linux Device Drivers (Third edition, Corbet, Rubini, and Kroah-Hartman, O'Reilly, US $39.95) to master this critical subject.

Clearly, a new edition of this practical and highly regarded volume was called for. The new version of the Linux kernel--version 2.6.10--has rationalized and simplified several common tasks like plug and play, interacting with user space through the sysfs file system, and management of multiple devises on standard buses. "The 2.6 kernel is vastly different, internally, from its predecessors. This update to Linux Device Drivers is a necessary tool for programmers trying to work with current kernels and follow the kernel's evolution," says coauthor Jonathan Corbet.

The authors of Linux Device Drivers, Third Edition are leaders in the robust Linux community and contributors to the Linux kernel. Jonathon Corbet is a kernel contributor and the executive editor of the highly regarded LWN.net news and information site. Allessandro Rubini is a contributor to the Linux code and a central figure in the vibrant Italian Linux community. Greg Kroah-Hartman is the current kernel maintainer for the USB, PCI, and driver core subsystems. In other words, these guys know their stuff, and it shows.

The book has been thoroughly revised to cover the new kernel, but it also includes new chapters on important types of drivers not covered previously, such as consoles, USB drivers, and more. "I'm excited by what I witness in the embedded arena. Ideas are moving fast these days," says coauthor Rubini. For those who want to keep up with the changes to the Linux kernel--and the future of device drivers--this new edition is indispensable.

In keeping with the spirit of Linux kernel development, Linux Device Drivers, Third Edition will be released under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike license.

Praise for the previous edition:

"If you are a developer immersed in the bowels of the Linux kernel version 2.4, this is one book you'll likely read until it's ragged...To say this is the best book on writing Linux device drivers is to overstate the obvious; this is the only book on writing Linux device drivers. Aside from that, even if there were a dozen books on the topic, Linux Device Drivers, 2nd Edition would still be the best by far, given its attention to detail throughout and the qualifications of its authors. If you are interested in supporting computer peripherals with Linux, or developing new hardware for the operating system, buy a copy of this book on your next trip to the bookstore."
--Emmett Dulaney, UnixReview.com

"The second edition of Linux Device Drivers remains the best general-purpose, paper-bound guide for programmers wishing to make hardware devices work under the world's most popular open-source operating system portable--that is, that compile and run under all popular Linux platforms. That, along with the fact that they're careful to explain and illustrate concepts, makes this book very well-suited to any programmer familiar with C but not with the hardware-software interface."
--David Wall, amazon.co.uk

More reviews of the previous editions of "Linux Device Drivers" can be found here.

Additional Resources:

Linux Device Drivers, Third Edition
Jonathan Corbet, Alessandro Rubini, and Greg Kroah-Hartman
ISBN: 0-596-00590-3, 615 pages, $39.95 US, $55.95 CA
1-800-998-9938; 1-707-827-7000

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