Re: Firmware or Firmwares?

Subject: Re: Firmware or Firmwares?
From: "Stuart Burnfield" <slb -at- westnet -dot- com -dot- au>
To: "Techwr-l" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 23 Jun 2016 13:38:05 +0800

I don't think I've ever heard either "firmwares" or "hardwares" in
the IT context. "Softwares" appears occasionally but it sounds like it
came from a guy who owns the corner gadget store or an ESL writer
working for a company that's too financially stretched to afford
someone to check their web copy and manuals.

A quick look at a couple of IT style guides doesn't turn up any
specific guidance as to how to pluralize these words. If a style guide
doesn't say that a term has a special meaning in that industry, treat
it as a regular English word or phrase.' "Software' and its cousins
are uncountable nouns, therefore, don't add an "s".

I was going to say that 'the plural of firmware is firmware' but this
helpful post on StackExchange explained why that's misleading:_I also
want to point out that because the word "software" is uncountable,
there is no such thing as a "plural form."_

_What I mean is this: don't misinterpret the accepted answer to imply
that the following sentence is correct:__ _

_The company Microsoft produces many software._ _ _

_The above is problematic for the same reason that the following
sentence is problematic:__ _

_My bottle is full of many water._ _ _

_So again: to answer your question directly, there is no plural form.
Software is like water; you can have "a lot" of it, but you can't have
"many" (or "dozens", or "hundreds", etc.) of it. You can, however, as
the other answers have already indicated, have "many pieces of it"
(just like you can have "many bottles of water")._

--- Stuart

DATE: WED, 22 JUN 2016 16:31:25 -0700

Time to settle another debate I'm having with one of the engineers.
always used "firmware" to refer to one firmware file or a group of
the same way you would use "software." I never say "softwares." Has
ever used the term "firmwares" to refer to multiple firmware files or
group of files?

Visit TechWhirl for the latest on content technology, content strategy and content development |


You are currently subscribed to TECHWR-L as archive -at- web -dot- techwr-l -dot- com -dot-

To unsubscribe send a blank email to
techwr-l-leave -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com

Send administrative questions to admin -at- techwr-l -dot- com -dot- Visit for more resources and info.

Looking for articles on Technical Communications? Head over to our online magazine at

Looking for the archived Techwr-l email discussions? Search our public email archives @

Previous by Author: RE: internal xref appearance - in PDFs ?
Next by Author: Re: photos to line art conversions
Previous by Thread: Re: Firmware or Firmwares?
Next by Thread: HTML5, Phones, and Tables

What this post helpful? Share it with friends and colleagues:

Sponsored Ads