Does the operating system affect the firmware

I don’t know if this is the right place to ask this question but still please help me

My operating system (Debian) says that I have missing firmware something about i918). Debian documentation says that I can download it with the isenkram-cli package. But isn’t the manufacturer of the computer the one who gives out firmware updates? Doesn’t the operating system not affect the firmware?

Answers 1

  • Nowadays lots of hardware needs firmware which isn’t stored alongside the hardware itself (in flash or ROM); the hardware expects its driver, running on the main operating system, to load it.

    This is what the “missing firmware” message is referring to: the i915 driver lists the firmware it can potentially need (run sudo modinfo i915 | grep '^firmware' to see the list), and the system sees that the hardware needs the i915 driver but that at least some of the firmware isn’t available. Note that the i915 driver supports lots of different chipsets, with different firmware requirements; so the “missing firmware” message isn’t necessarily a show-stopper.

    The firmware is provided by the hardware manufacturer, but on Linux it takes a circuitous route to get to your system: the manufacturers make them available typically in the Linux firmware repository, and from there it is packaged for your distribution.


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