Discussing Nouveau Driver Power Management
Written by Michael Larabel in Nouveau on 11 January 2010 at 03:47 AM EST. 8 Comments
While the Nouveau driver is now beginning to be trimmed down a bit as non-KMS support is being dropped, this free software NVIDIA driver will be gaining some new code in the form of power management support. Power management for NVIDIA hardware in the Nouveau driver stack is still early on, but a patch is being prepared and a discussion has been initiated how to handle the power management controls for this driver. A discussion surrounding power management controls has also opened up to the larger Linux GPU driver development community at large.

This discussion has been taking place in this mailing list thread (and then carried on over to dri-devel) for the past few days. Brought up are how to expose power management options to the user (e.g. by sysfs or procfs), what sort of power management scaling algorithm to utilize, and basically how to handle this entire process.

Power management support for NVIDIA graphics cards in the Nouveau driver is not expected until the Linux 2.6.34 kernel or later, but it's certainly a matter of interest to many. The open-source ATI developers have also been working on their in-kernel DRM power management support too.
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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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