Ubuntu Kernel Developer releases Firmware Test Suite
Colin Ian King, an Ubuntu Kernel Developer, has released Firmware Test Suite (fwts), a tool for the automatic testing of a PC's firmware. King explains in a blog posting that many subtle or vexing kernel issues can be caused when a PC's firmware is buggy and so a tool to automatically check for BIOS and ACPI errors is useful. Fwts incorporates over thirty tests and is able to offer advice on how to fix, or workaround issues, that it finds. In future, King plans to expand the number of tests whenever he finds an automatically diagnosable issue.
A number of the tests in fwts are based on tests from linuxfirmwarekit.org, but King says he has added more tests, widened the range of errors checked and improved the feedback given by the tests. Currently available for the, in development, Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick, fwts can be downloaded from the Maverick repositories. The Firmware Testing Team on Launchpad acts as the project's development home. 32 bit and 64 bit Intel images for installing fwts to a USB memory stick are also available; instructions for downloading are in King's announcement.