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Networking status

From: Marco Gerards
Subject: Networking status
Date: Sun, 08 Jan 2006 20:58:58 +0100
User-agent: Gnus/5.1007 (Gnus v5.10.7) Emacs/21.4 (gnu/linux)


This weekend I worked on networking support for GRUB 2.  It is still
far from done.  A lot of people are interested in this functionality,
so I hope this email answers all questions.  At first I said I would
do this in February, but things went more smoothly than I expected.

First of all, what have I been doing:

Because I like working in userspace because it makes things easier to
debug, I am using grub-emu to implement networking.  In order to be
able to do this I am using TAP (a virtual Ethernet device).

I have developed Ethernet support.  At the moment only the TAP device
is supported.  But I plan to add support for IEEE 1275 and perhaps
UNDI support.  Vincent was working on support for PCI cards, I hope he
will find the time to finish this some day...

Except Ethernet support, I've also written ARP support and made it
possible to send IP+UDP packets.  The support to receive IP+UDP is not
finished yet.

How everything is implemented will be described when I send in the
patch, but feel free to ask questions about the implementation and

Things I planned to do:

- Finish IPv4+UDP receive.
- Implement DHCP/BOOTP.
- Clean up the code a bit and document everything properly.
- Add IEEE 1275 support (so networking will work on the PPC and
- Implement TFTP.

Things I will perhaps work on:

- Starting a GRUB hackers manual with clear examples of networking and
  how it all works.

Things I (most likely) will not do:

- PCI card support.


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