introduction to special files and
The manual pages in section 4 describe the special files, related driver functions, and networking support available in the system. In this part of the manual, the SYNOPSIS section of each configurable device gives a sample specification for use in constructing a system description for the config(8) program. The DIAGNOSTICS section lists messages which may appear on the console and/or in the system error log /var/log/messages due to errors in device operation; see syslogd(8) for more information.
This section contains both devices which may be configured into the system and network related information. The networking support is introduced in netintro(4).
This section describes the hardware supported on the amd64 platform. Software support for these devices comes in two forms. A hardware device may be supported with a character or block device driver, or it may be used within the networking subsystem and have a network interface driver. Block and character devices are accessed through files in the file system of a special type; see mknod(8). Network interfaces are indirectly accessed through the interprocess communication facilities provided by the system; see socket(2).
A hardware device is identified to the system at configuration time and the appropriate device or network interface driver is then compiled into the system. When the resultant system is booted, the autoconfiguration facilities in the system probe for the device and, if found, enable the software support for it. If a device does not respond at autoconfiguration time it is not accessible at any time afterwards. To enable a device which did not autoconfigure, the system will have to be rebooted.
The autoconfiguration system is described in autoconf(4).
LIST OF DEVICES
A complete list of available devices is contained within the pages describing the system buses and controllers. For example, a PCI device would be listed in the pci(4) man page. The following buses and controllers list these devices:
autoconf(4), cpu(4), config(8)
intro first appeared in