Driver on demand is an attempt to ease driver installations in linux. Basically, what happens is that a user plugs any device into the computer, and if a driver isn't found, the client connects to a CGI server, to check if the device is known, and if its not in the database, then the driver lookup fails and the user is no worse off then they currently are.
However, if the device is found online, the driver information file (similar to .inf's, just XML and more versatile) is analysed. If its built into newer versions of kernels, but theres a driver available, the driver is installed, but the system recommends strongly that the user upgrades their kernel, automatically, otherwise it just installs.
If the vendor chooses to, they can create their own driverinstall files, put it on their site, and put a reference on the Driver On Demand server, so the user will always have the newest files.. As opposed to having to wait for the admin to update their definitions.
To people who dont care about the specifics, all they need to care about is that if a device on their system needs a driver, this will find it on the internet, and install it for them automatically.
Here are some key features of "Driver On Demand":
· Uses HTTP/plaintext, so proxy compatible
· Allows the use of always up to date file.driverinstall files users can just click to install their latest hardware
· Takes the hassle of installing drivers away from the users
· XML based driver definitions, so extremely extendable, and is written in perl, so easy to edit and handle
· System handles licenses, allowing users to add them or remove licenses of drivers (promotes GPL drivers too, because that licence is accepted by default)
· Open source, GPL.. Which means u dont need to worry about licensing..
· Allows one click install of drivers (the first linux driver listing standard)
· Promotes Open source