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Hardware News Archives

Oracle Does Some Open-Source Good With TTM

While Oracle is most often criticized since their acquisition of Sun Microsystems for shafting the open-source community, in particular for OpenOffice, MySQL, OpenSolaris, and other projects, not everything they do is bad for open-source and Linux. They have VirtualBox, various kernel developers, Chris Mason works for them on Btrfs, etc. They also still employ some graphics developers. One of these developers for some time now has been working on improving the GPU memory management situation in virtualized environments.
25 August 2011 - Oracle - 7 Comments

An Open-Source Mobile Linux Graphics Stack?

The mobile device landscape, particularly for those devices running Linux, is quickly evolving. Just in the past few days, Google bought Motorola, Qualcomm open-sourced the remainder of their Gobi API for controlling modems, and HP ended off all their webOS devices, among other changes. But will the future mobile Linux device landscape deal with more open-source drivers, particularly when it comes to graphics?
20 August 2011 - Hmm? - 7 Comments

HP Making Major Changes To WebOS, Selling PC Business

With Hewlett Packard's Q3'2011 earnings that were just released, they have just revealed a couple major news items. HP has confirmed the news that began spreading this morning that they are looking to sell or spin off its personal computer business. They also confirmed they are looking to buy Autonomy Corporation. The surprise news, however, is that HP will be discontinuing operations for webOS devices such as the TouchPad and Pre smart-phone.
18 August 2011 - Shake Up - 10 Comments

Google's Buying Out Motorola For 12.5 Billion USD

While we don't normally talk about Android news, this Monday morning Google has made a particularly interesting announcement that affects their mobile Linux operating system as well as hardware. Google has just announced they will be acquiring Motorola Mobility at a price of around 12.5 billion USD.
15 August 2011 - Motorola Mobility - 45 Comments

Ubisoft Is Playing With Linux & Xen Virtualization

Ubisoft, the massive video game publishing and development studio, has been busy playing with Linux. In particular, exploring opportunities presented by Xen virtualization with regards to VGA pass-through as a means of decent gaming performance in a virtualized environment. A discussion began in the Phoronix Forums yesterday about Ubisoft's Xen VGA pass-through demo.
12 July 2011 - VGA Pass-Through - 16 Comments

A DRM Driver Appears For The i.MX51/53 SoCs IPU

A new open-source DRM graphics driver has appeared in the embedded space. Sascha Hauer with Pengutronix has released the initial DRM base driver for the i.MX IPUv3 as found in the i.MX51 and i.MX53 SoCs. This driver supports the SoC units necessary for frame-buffer support.
10 July 2011 - Image Processing Unit - 2 Comments

CERN Puts Out A New Open Hardware License

CERN, the European organization behind nuclear research and the well-known Large Hadron Collider, has released a new version of its Open Hardware License. Version 1.1 is this new OHL release, which seeks to provide "a legal framework to facilitate knowledge exchange across the electronic design community."
8 July 2011 - Version 1.1 - 3 Comments

HTC Is Buying Out S3 Graphics

HTC, one of the popular Taiwan-based mobile phone vendors, is going to be acquiring S3 Graphics from VIA Technologies. For around $300 million USD, HTC will have its hands on S3 Graphics and their intellectual property portfolio.
6 July 2011 - And Their IP - 22 Comments

What To Do If Still Seeing Poor Linux Battery Life

Even after using the Linux 2.6.38 kernel power regression workaround for those systems affected by the ASPM (Active-State Power Management) bug that was detected by Phoronix, some Linux users still don't have their netbook/notebook battery lasting as long as they'd wish. For some, Microsoft Windows 7 is still performing better on the battery and/or Ubuntu 10.04 LTS and earlier. As I've said, there's still at least a couple more Linux power regressions and other areas for optimization that I've discovered and still haven't yet publicly documented in full, some in part due to still analyzing what's happening.
30 June 2011 - Make A List - 39 Comments

A Comment On The Linux 2.6.38 Power Regression

Jesse Barnes, the maintainer of the PCI subsystem for the Linux kernel and one of the developers who signed-off on the patch that I discovered is causing the major Linux 2.6.38 kernel power regression, has commented on the matter.
27 June 2011 - From Jesse Barnes - 21 Comments

A Plethora Of Linux Power Tests Are On The Way

Nailing down the Linux kernel power regressions (see Linux Has Major Power Regression and Another Major Linux Power Regression Spotted) has made a big step forward this weekend. Not only to fix up these major kernel power regressions that are hitting many mobile Linux users, but to look further into the state of Linux power management is now possible and to closely analyze other areas of the Linux stack to find other areas for improvement.
18 June 2011 - Watts Up - 12 Comments

A New Open-Source KMS Driver Just Published

Embedded GPUs on Linux are a big mess due to their lack of fully open-source drivers, memory management complications, and other technical issues. However, there is some good news to report today and that's on the emergence of a new open-source KMS driver.
7 June 2011 - Yeah! - 1 Comment

DisplayLink Continues To Progress On Linux, But No 3D

It was back in May of 2009 that DisplayLink began providing open-source Linux support for their USB-interfaced graphics processors in the form of documentation and code. Shortly thereafter, frame-buffer and X.Org drivers for DisplayLink USB hardware arrived and it quickly matured. By early 2010 it was possible to produce interesting results with these USB graphics adapters doing things like driving nine monitors over USB from a single computer.
2 June 2011 - DisplayLink USB GPUs

Having Linux Support For Your Hardware At Launch

Support for running Linux on new hardware -- whether it be motherboards, wireless adapters, graphics cards, or complete systems -- has largely eased up in the past few years. As can be seen from Phoronix reviews of new hardware at launch, in many cases there is Linux support available (e.g. with AMD's launch today of the FirePro V5900 and FirePro V7900 there is already Catalyst support) that continues to be refined over time whether it be in closed or open-source drivers. Even for vendors committed towards delivering open-source Linux hardware support, the path to new hardware enablement is not easy.
24 May 2011 - The Struggle - 8 Comments

Broadcom Crystal HD Improvements Under Linux

For those that use the Broadcom Crystal HD adapters for video acceleration under Linux, their open-source driver has received a number of improvements just recently.
2 May 2011 - New Features - 10 Comments

How Hardware Companies Determine Their Linux Base

Landing in the Phoronix e-mail inbox last night was a question by a reader asking how hardware vendors determine the operating systems used by their customers and their respective market-share since there isn't anything to "phone home" and report usage statistics. In other words, this reader had just purchased four desktop processors and he was wondering how to inform AMD that he's a Linux user. This is in hopes of going towards their Linux tally and eventually increasing their Linux level of support.
26 April 2011 - The Linux Market-share - 66 Comments

The Linux Power Problem Is Widespread, Hits Desktops Too

The major Linux power regression situation seems to only be getting worse at this point. Following the Mobile Users Beware: Linux Has Major Power Regression and The Tests Showing Ubuntu 11.04 On A Power Consumption Binge, a variety of feedback has come in. There's the usual FUD that it's "Moronix" benchmarks and the like, but the fact of the matter is it's a very real problem and it's about to bite Ubuntu 11.04 and other Linux distributions planning to ship with 2.6.38 kernel or later.
23 April 2011 - It's A Mess - 10 Comments

Concerns Come Over Linaro's Memory Manager Plans

On Monday there was the Phoronix news item about Linaro aiming to unify Linux memory management; in particular it's for embedded ARM platforms and making the existing Linux video memory managers more compatible with that of the SoC designs and drivers. They want the memory manager to be able to share memory buffers across different devices and processes, which is something somewhat sought after already by Linux graphics developers for GEM/TTM, but this may end up leading to a new memory management fork.
21 April 2011 - A TTM Fork? - 2 Comments

FSF's High-Priority Driver Project Doesn't Move

Back in February the Free Software Foundation deemed creating an open-source PowerVR driver via clean-room reverse-engineering that's complete with a Gallium3D driver to be a high priority action item. More than two months after classifying it as a high-priority item -- and three months after the original proposal -- no work has been accomplished.
20 April 2011 - No Progress - 7 Comments

Linaro Aims To Unify Linux Memory Management

Last month I noted some of the problems facing embedded Linux on ARM SoCs in terms of graphics drivers with regard to the variety of memory management APIs available (for graphics there's primarily TTM and GEM within the kernel but also there's other options: HWMEM, UMP, CMA, VCM, CMEM, and PMEM). There's also other graphics driver problems in the ARM world, but the Linaro group has announced they've taken up the issue of embedded Linux memory management for graphics and other areas. They're forming a working group to hopefully work towards resolving this issue for their next six-month development cycle.
18 April 2011 - For Embedded Devices - 1 Comment

556 Hardware news articles published on Phoronix.
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