Re: Driver for EMS boards.

Anthony Barbachan (
Tue, 19 May 1998 21:39:49 -0400

-----Original Message-----
From: Mike A. Harris <>
To: Linux Kernel mailing list <>
Date: Tuesday, May 19, 1998 12:21 AM
Subject: Driver for EMS boards.

>I'd like to have a driver that would turn an old 286 EMS RAM
>expander board into a RAMDISK that could be used for a swapfile,
>or temporary space.

I do not think these boards had any consistant interface except for the one
provided by the DOS EMS driver. Unless you can get information on how to
communicate directly with your particular hardware a Linux driver may not be
possible. However if you have the original DOS drivers, you can get this
information by disassembling the drivers and tracing down generalities of
how they work.

>I have a friend who wants to run Linux on a 486 with 8M, but he
>has tonnes of 30 pin SIMMs and whackloads of 286 EMS boards. I
>figured that someone else must have allready had an interest in
>developing a driver for Linux to use such a board as swap, and I
>don't want to duplicate the effort if one exists.

SIMM converters might be a better option as they should allow you to use
these chips directly as memory.

>Can someone point me in the right direction?
>If no such driver exists, I'm interested in writing my own. I
>have never written any kernel level code as of yet, but figure
>that such a driver can't be that difficult.
>Any pointers to writing such a device driver would be greatly
>appreciated. I'm going to look at the DOS driver in DEBUG and
>try and figure out what its doing.

I can give you the list of functions that the original drivers had to
provide. Do you happen to know which version of EMS the boards provided?

>Thanks all.
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