2.2. 需要固件的设备

Besides the availability of a device driver, some hardware also requires so-called firmware or microcode to be loaded into the device before it can become operational. This is most common for network interface cards (especially wireless NICs), but for example some USB devices and even some hard disk controllers also require firmware.

With many graphics cards, basic functionality is available without additional firmware, but the use of advanced features requires an appropriate firmware file to be installed in the system. In some cases, a successful installation can still end up in a black screen or garbled display when rebooting into the installed system. If that happens, some workarounds can be tried to log in anyway (see 第 6.4.3 节 “Completing the Installed System”).

有些老的设备需要固件才能工作,这些固件被厂商永久性地置于设备的 EEPROM/Flash 芯片中。现今新设备不再采用这种方式嵌入固件,因此固件必须在系统引导的时候从宿主系统上传到设备中。

根据 Debian GNU/Linux 项目的标准,大多数情况下这些固件属于 non-free,不能被包含在主发行版或安装系统里面。如果设备驱动程序被包含到发行版里面,并且 Debian GNU/Linux 可以合法地发布固件,它通常被单独地放置在仓库的 non-free 区里面。

然而,这并不意味着该硬件不能在安装时使用。从 Debian GNU/Linux 5.0 开始,debian-installer 支持从可移动的介质,比如 U 盘,加载固件或包含固件的软件包。参阅第 6.4 节 “加载缺失的固件”了解如何在安装时加载固件文件或软件包的的详细信息。

假如 debian-installer 提示需要固件文件而您又没有该固件,或者不想装非自由的固件到系统上,您可以试着跳过固件加载。有些情况下驱动程序只是在特定情况下提示需要额外的固件,而这个设备在很多系统上可以不使用它就能工作(这通常出现在使用 tg3 驱动的网卡上)。