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Old 02-19-2004, 06:05 AM   #1
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Question modules vs compiled in


Today I explained a friend of the merits of Linux. When I came to the topic of modules he ask me _why_ you would want modules. They seen to do the same thing but need more attention. I never give the subject much thought but I have to admit that I don't know why anyone would like to have modules instead of compiled in drivers. The only feeble answer I can come up with is stability.
Old 02-19-2004, 06:32 AM   #2
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Because the kernel is kept in system memory all the time, the bigger it is the less system resources remain for other tasks - Modules can be loaded an unloaded at any time to ensure greater efficiency - also to upgrade a modularized driver you just need to recompile the module whereas If the driver is part of the kernel, you have to recompile the kernel. (as to the degree of usefulness of this for a typical consumer desktop user.....that's a different question..... but the facility/capability is their for anyone who wants to utilise it)

Last edited by Skyline; 02-19-2004 at 06:49 AM.
Old 02-19-2004, 07:31 AM   #3
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You have entered into the great topic of modularity vs non-modularity .

While some argue for one, and others for the other, both have its advantages and disadvantages. If you compile, say, a driver support into the kernel, it will always be present and will be the very quick. But your kernel will get bigger for every driver you add, which finally will make it quite bloated. This will make your kernel slow, which was certainly not your original intention.

So you modularize the kernel, and load the modules whenever necessary .


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