Forced Throttling/Scheduling For Intel Graphics
Written by Michael Larabel in Intel on 20 November 2011 at 05:35 AM EST. Add A Comment
Ben Widawsky has published a set of 15 patches as he seeks comments about forced throttling/scheduling support for the Intel Linux DRM graphics driver.

With his patches, there's two scheduler methods implemented: a fairness scheduler and a batch scheduler. "The fairness scheduler is currently implemented on batch granularity but that is not guaranteed going forward. The batch scheduler is a way to set batch limits per pid...It is my opinion that the fairness scheduler isn't terribly interesting except to prevent badly written, or malicious apps. For example, a 3d app which queues up a ton of work but never calls glxSwapBuffer. The batch scheduler is also somewhat uninteresting as the values it uses require proper tuning and will vary from system to system, and even then depending on what's currently running. But like the fairness one, this too has its applications."

The patches can be viewed on the intel-gfx mailing list.

It's possible this forced throttling/scheduling support for preventing greedy GPU applications could work its way into the Linux 3.3 kernel for the Intel DRM driver. In somewhat related graphics work, there is TimeGraph as a GPU command scheduler.

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Michael Larabel is the principal author of and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via

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