A driver can continue to provide service using faulty hardware. The driver can attempt to work around the identified problem by using an alternative strategy for accessing the device. Given that broken hardware is unpredictable and given the risk associated with additional design complexity, adaptive strategies are not always wise. At most, these strategies should be limited to periodic interrupt polling and retry attempts. Periodically retrying the device tells the driver when a device has recovered. Periodic polling can control the interrupt mechanism after a driver has been forced to disable interrupts.
Ideally, a system always has an alternative device to provide a vital system service. Service multiplexors in kernel or user space offer the best method of maintaining system services when a device fails. Such practices are beyond the scope of this section.