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Unix Device Driver online training

Unix Device Driver


Implementing Linux on custom hardware will, in most cases, require you to write device drivers. This course demonstrates how to write code that runs within the Linux kernel to handle hardware events and present a standard interface to applications.This course presents a detailed view of Linux device drivers with an emphasis on topics specific to embedded environments: cross compilation; remote debugging and real-time.


  • Good 'C' programming skills
  • General knowledge of an RTOS or embedded operating systems
  • Knowledge of Linux or Unix is useful, but not essential


  • It is a 12 days program and extends up to 2hrs each.
  • The format is 40% theory, 60% Hands-on.

  • It is a 3 days program and extends up to 8hrs each.
  • The format is 40% theory, 60% Hands-on.
    Private Classroom arranged on request and minimum attendies for batch is 4.

course content

  • Writing Kernel Modules
    • Structure of a kernel module
    • Compiling and loading modules
  • Introduction to Character Device Drivers
    • Major and minor numbers
    • Basic operations – open, read, write and release
    • Example driver based on a fifo
  • Debugging Kernel Code and Device Drivers
    • Kernel oops messages
    • Debugging with gdb and kgdb
  • The Linux Driver Model
    • Sysfs and the /sys directory
    • Adding device classes and class attributes
  • Task Synchronisation
    • Putting tasks to sleep using wait queues
    • Re-entrancy issues
    • Mutexes, semaphores and spinlocks
  • Real Time Linux
    • How real-time is Linux?
    • Things that affect real-time behaviour
    • Kernel pre-emption modes
  • Input and Output
    • Interfacing with the real world
    • Accessing memory and i/o mapped resources
  • Time
    • Delays and sleeps
    • Using kernel timers
  • Interrupts
    • Installing an interrupt handler; interrupt context and process context
    • Deferred processing using a bottom half or tasklet
  • Memory management
    • Allocating memory by pages and bytes
    • Slab caches
    • Techniques to map device memory directly into user space using mmap
    • Getting direct access to user buffers
  • Block Device Drivers
    • Anatomy of a block device: example RAM disk driver
  • Devices on a PCI Bus
    • How to access PCI hardware
    • An outline PCI driver
  • Network Device Drivers
    • Anatomy of a network device: example loop-back interface
  • Board Support Packages
    • Customising the Linux configuration menus


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