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Intel Core i7 3770K Ivy Bridge Linux Performance

Michael Larabel

Published on 23 April 2012
Written by Michael Larabel
Page 3 of 20 - 38 Comments

The main item to note from this slide is that the Intel Thunderbolt support under Linux is still a work-in-progress, particularly when it comes to using this technology (formerly known as LightPeak) for graphics.

The Ivy Bridge processors should work fine with any modern Linux distribution. With new motherboards not being required over Sandy Bridge, going back to Linux distributions from 2011 things should "just work", except for wanting the latest code if you plan to take advantage of the Intel HD 4000 graphics. As far as the new 7-Series Panther Point motherboards, the Linux distributions from late 2011 and 2012 should be best. With the Intel Z77 motherboards I have tested thus far, I have not hit any serious Linux snags when using Ubuntu 12.04 and the Linux 3.2 kernel.

Intel's platform for next year is Haswell. Intel OTC (Open-Source Technology Center) developers have already been working on the Haswell Linux enablement. The open-source Haswell graphics code began appearing in March so that by the time that H2'2012 Linux distributions start rolling the initial support for Mesa, xf86-video-intel, and the Linux kernel will be in place. I have been told this Haswell Linux graphics driver code is already running on early Haswell silicon, as opposed to just Intel hardware simulators. Intel began pushing their Ivy Bridge Linux graphics code last April to ensure that the support would be widespread by today's launch (originally the Ivy Bridge launch was going to happen earlier in 2012). Aside from graphics, there is already Haswell compiler support being worked on for GCC and LLVM/Clang with the AVX2 (Advanced Vector Extensions 2) and other new features of Intel's 2013 CPU platform.

Ivy Bridge processors should be able to overclock even better than Sandy Bridge. Under Linux this is the same, except that any motherboard vendors offering overclocking utilities for Windows are not available for Linux. Linux-based overclocking of Ivy Bridge is limited to the UEFI/BIOS controls. Speaking of UEFI/BIOS, there aren't yet any Panther Point motherboards shipping from OEMs with Coreboot instead of some proprietary UEFI, but Google's been working on the Sandy/Ivy Bridge Coreboot support.

All the benchmarks coming out today are likely Windows-based, aside from Phoronix. All of the numbers being spread by Intel's PR department are also all from Microsoft Windows 7. Thankfully, Phoronix is here to provide the Linux numbers.

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