Open Source Firmware Foundation Issues Open Letter: Intel Should Open Source FSP
Open Source Firmware Foundation Issues Open Letter: Intel Should Open Source FSP.
The Open Source Firmware Foundation published an open letter seeking community support, calling on Intel to open source its Firmware Support Package (FSP, Firmware Support Package). FSP binaries have been a significant limitation on how open Intel system firmware is, and a limiting factor in supporting Coreboot, LinuxBoot, and other technologies on Intel hardware.
The foundation mentioned in the open letter that in the past decade, Intel FSP has grown substantially with each new generation of processors, and the degree of openness of this locked file at the firmware level has been an important limiting factor, and There is a growing industry-wide interest in having open source firmware.
Open source firmware helps in everything from solving security issues to driving innovative features under the hood.
The new “alternative path ” model summarized by Subrata creates a very feasible and pragmatic approach to getting rid of the secrecy in the platform support model that exists in current approaches.
It balances the business needs of SoC vendors and protects their core interests, while supporting more innovation and allowing the participation of the open source community. Here are some highlights of the new design concept:
Provide more technical documentation to define minimal and safe silicon initialization in the public domain, allowing open source work to be done independently. Intel would definitely benefit from this approach.
Reduce the time to make changes by allowing more developers to participate in the development process and leveraging the Intel developer community.
Create a more comprehensive and customizable interface that focuses on the needs of all involved parties. This will enable Intel’s partners to build more innovative platforms.
Keeps firmware iterative and compact by allowing interested parties to customize the firmware according to the requirements of their platform.
Open source FSP is something that many have been after for years, and while Intel has responded differently, so far it’s still just a binary. Aside from the Intel, many in the community would also like to see AMD be more open with its handling of the PSP and firmware.
The open letter also cites a blog post by Google Chrome OS firmware engineer Subrata Banik , an interesting article that does a good job summarizing the current challenges, benefits of being more open, and related issues.