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Recapping The Linux 3.11 Kernel Features

Linux Kernel

Published on 31 August 2013 12:03 AM EDT
Written by Michael Larabel in Linux Kernel
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The Linux 3.11 kernel will hopefully be released this weekend so if you've fallen behind on your Phoronix reading or have got lost in the dozens of different 3.11/3.12/not-merged articles about new Linux kernel features, here's a recap of some of the most prominent features that are introduced in the Linux 3.11 kernel.

There's been hundreds of different Phoronix stories since the Linux 3.11 kernel entered development, and we've already written numerous stories about features coming to Linux 3.12, so here's an overview of the Linux 3.11 kernel features:

Graphics:

The Linux 3.11 kernel will hopefully be released this weekend so if you've fallen behind on your Phoronix reading or have got lost in the dozens of different 3.11/3.12/not-merged articles about new Linux kernel features, here's a recap of some of the most prominent features that are introduced in the Linux 3.11 kernel.

There's been hundreds of different Phoronix stories since the Linux 3.11 kernel entered development, and we've already written numerous stories about features coming to Linux 3.12, so here's an overview of the Linux 3.11 kernel features:

Graphics:

- The DRM driver changes dominate the Linux 3.11 kernel! The big feature is Radeon dynamic power management support has finally come to AMD's open-source driver along with early support for the Radeon HD 8000 "Sea Islands" GPUs. Phoronix tests have shown Radeon DPM is successful at improving power use and lowering temperatures while delivering great performance.

- There's a new DRM display driver for the Renesas R-Car SoC.

- Intel Haswell improvements and Valley View / Bay Trail support is now ready for Linux desktop usage.

- H.264 / MPEG-2 video decoding for Nouveau with select NVIDIA GPUs bearing the VP2 engine as part of the PureVideo HD support. This is exposed in Gallium3D via the VDPAU state tracker. There's also early GK110 GPU support. The NVIDIA GK110 is the firm's latest high-end Kepler GPU.

Disk / File-System:

- LZ4 compression support.

- Zswap was merged for compressed swap caching.

- Various XFS file-system improvements.

- Performance tuning for Btrfs.

- F2FS file-system updates.

- EXT4 file-system updates.

- The Lustre file-system client was merged for the first time.

CPU:

- AVX2 Crypto optimizations.

- PowerPC improvements from IBM.

- Continued ARM improvements.

- Xen and KVM virtualization now work for 64-bit ARM.

General Hardware & Miscellaneous Improvements:

- Input device improvements.

- Lots of audio / sound improvements.

- With Linux 3.11, Wine can now handle Windows RT applications.

Aside from covering the news items, there's also been many Linux 3.11 kernel benchmarks already from the Linux 3.11 Phoronix articles.

About The Author
Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the web-site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience and being the largest web-site devoted to Linux hardware reviews, particularly for products relevant to Linux gamers and enthusiasts but also commonly reviewing servers/workstations and embedded Linux devices. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics hardware drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated testing software. He can be followed via and or contacted via .
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