Nouveau Fermi Power Management Is A W.I.P.
Written by Michael Larabel in Nouveau on 8 December 2011 at 06:51 AM EST. 7 Comments
After reading yesterday's the state of Radeon power management article, for those wondering about the Nouveau driver power management, here's a brief update.

Simply put, there aren't any major changes for Nouveau right now as it concerns power/fan management. There is some out-of-tree Nouveau fan management code, but it hasn't been merged yet since it's potentially dangerous if something goes wrong and your graphics card ends up overheating.

From last month is my 14-Way Comparison Of NVIDIA vs. Nouveau Drivers for those interested, which includes not only the OpenGL performance numbers between the NVIDIA Linux drivers but also power consumption levels. Nothing in mainline has really changed to affect these numbers in the past month.

What is new to say though is that Red Hat's Ben Skeggs is working on the power management support for Fermi, the GeForce 400/500 series. The Nouveau Wiki has been updated this week to reflect the Fermi PM as now being a work-in-progress for NVC0-Fermi. It would be lovely if some parts of Fermi power management (especially re-clocking support) were ready for the Linux 3.3 kernel, but I haven't seen any patches yet nor heard any positive information.

As for the official word, power management for all generations of NVIDIA GPUs from the NV10 (GeForce 256) through Fermi are marked as being "WIP" on the aforementioned Wiki page.
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Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com 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 OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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