Need help trying to patch a driver

John Dangler jdangler at
Fri Nov 23 16:33:10 UTC 2007

On Fri, 2007-11-23 at 10:49 -0500, John Toliver wrote:
> This is the first I am hearing of being able to do this.  My T23 has
> has
> a problem with trackpoint drift for a while and I googled a fix in the
> form of a "driver patch"  clicking on the link to me to a document
> with
> code in it that is all.  I know I need to do something with the code
> but
> I haven't a clue how to "patch" a driver.  I have googled the subject
> and all I get are hits on pages of other driver patches available but
> not a howto on how to actually patch your driver.

I'd be interested to see the link.

> My question is:
> 1. is it possible to backup the driver you are going to patch and if
> so
> how?  Is this as simple as a file copy?
Device drivers (I am assuming that this is what you are referring to)
are (usually) a mix of 'C' and Assembler code which provide interface
instructions between the OS and the particular device.  They should be
able to be copied.

> 2. How do you actually patch a driver?
Usually, 'patching' a driver would mean replacing the existing code with
the updated code, since most people don't write this level of code.  If
the code you found is meant to be inserted into, or a replacement for
certain parts of a particular driver, you'll need the source code for it
(which is presumably available with the linux source).

> 3. Once the deed is done, how do you restore it if your system check
> out
> for a night cap?
Since we're speaking of a relatively minor annoyance here, if the
pointing devices simply go 'south' after the patch is applied and the
system is restarted, going into a text terminal and moving the original
back should suffice.

Caution: If the device driver is one that is built into the kernel, this
would mean re-compiling the kernel.

> Please correct me if I'm approaching this wrongly.
> Thank you in advance.
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