ACPIEC(4) BSD Kernel Interfaces Manual ACPIEC(4)
acpiec -- ACPI Embedded Controller
acpiec* at acpi?
acpiecdt* at acpi?
The acpiec driver supports ACPI Embedded Controllers.
An ACPI Embedded Controller (EC) is typically a small microprocessor that is responsible for various tasks related to ACPI. The primary task
is to handle ACPI specific interrupts, which are mapped to so-called ACPI General Purpose Events (GPEs). Other possible functions include
embedded access to other buses such as the iic(4).
The ACPI specific events range from user initiated events to events triggered by the hardware. When such an event occurs, typically either a
System Management Interrupt (SMI) or a System Control Interrupt (SCI) is raised. The latter is an active, visible, shareable, level inter-
rupt. On most Intel chipsets SCI is hardwired to the interrupt number 9. The main task of an EC is to raise a system control interrupt.
All GPEs generate SCIs. A typical example of the internal wiring of GPEs could involve gpio(4): when, e.g., the AC adapter is connected, a
certain GPIO line becomes active, a given GPE is flagged, and a SCI interrupt is raised by the EC, leading to execution of ACPI machine code
in order to locate the handler associated with the event. A corresponding driver, acpiacad(4) in this case, will finally finish the process-
ing of the event.
Due to the reasons described above, majority of ACPI specific drivers are dysfunctional without acpiec. It is therefore recommended that
acpiec is always enabled, even though it may not be required on some older systems.
The acpiec driver appeared in NetBSD 1.6.
Many machines depend on early attachment of acpiec. In such cases the information required by acpiec should be available as a separate and
optional Embedded Controller Descriptor Table (ECDT). If an ECDT is not available or early attachment can not be carried out due other rea-
sons, the initialization of the whole acpi(4) subsystem may be problematic.
February 27, 2010 BSD