Before creating patches

There are a number of things which should be done before you consider sending patches to the development community.

These include: 

  • Test the code to the extent that you can. Make use of the kernel’s debugging tools, ensure that the kernel will build with all reasonable combinations of configuration options, use cross-compilers to build for different architectures, etc.
  • Make sure your code is compliant with the kernel coding style guidelines.
  • Does your change have performance implications? If so, you should run benchmarks showing what the impact (or benefit) of your change is; a summary of the results should be included with the patch.
  • Be sure that you have the right to post the code. If this work was done for an employer, the employer likely has a right to the work and must be agreeable with its release under the GPL.

As a general rule, putting in some extra thought before posting code almost always pays back the effort in short order.