Thermal Monitoring Comes To Newer Radeon DRM
Written by Michael Larabel in AMD on 1 June 2010 at 09:47 PM EDT. 30 Comments
Over the past few days we have had a number of new open-source ATI Radeon support upbringings to report on including the ATI R600/700 Gallium3D driver being merged, voltage control for managing the power on newer ATI GPUs, and the ATI Radeon HD 5000 series Mesa code coming soon, but the slew of open-source ATI news is not over yet.

AMD's Alex Deucher has just published a patch that now exports the internal thermal monitoring sensor through the sysfs interface. This patch makes it possible to monitor the internal GPU temperature on R600 (Radeon HD 2000/3000), R700 (Radeon HD 4000), and Evergreen (Radeon HD 5000) series graphics cards. This has been a feature we have been waiting on for quite a while to see how the thermal performance compares between the open-source ATI Linux graphics driver stack and the proprietary Catalyst driver, but it should be useful for normal users too in ensuring their graphics processors are not overheating especially for those with passively-cooled graphics cards.

This patch, however, will not work for 100% of the R600/R700/Evergreen GPUs as not all OEMs support the actual internal sensor. Most of the Mobility Radeon ASICs also implement a separate ACPI-based thermal monitoring mechanism.

The patch that provides the R600/R700/Evergreen thermal monitoring support to the Radeon DRM KMS code can be found on the DRI development list.

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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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