Today marks nineteen years since I started Phoronix.com for covering the Linux hardware space. It's been a wild ride from the days of 56K modems, graphics driver pains, and having to use NDISWrapper for WiFi device driver support on Linux, among many other Linux hardware pains in the early days. These days the open-source GPU driver scene is far better off, Linux hardware support overall is a great, companies continue investing massively into Linux/open-source thanks to the success in the server space over the past two decades, and the Steam Deck has proven to be one of the most interesting Linux-powered consumer devices in recent years.
Debian 12 remains on track for releasing next week even with around 100 known RC bugs that likely won't be resolved pre-release. The Debian release team says overall things are on-track.
Linus Torvalds just released Linux 6.4-rc5 as the latest weekly test candidate for Linux 6.4 and this kernel version is looking to be in good shape for a likely release in late June.
The LLVM Fortran compiler "Flang" has begun seeing NVIDIA CUDA support land in the upstream code-base.
The ACO "Amd COmpiler" started by Valve for the Mesa RADV Vulkan driver has shown it can do wonders for Linux gaming performance and reducing game load times compared to AMD's official AMDGPU LLVM shader compiler back-end. Recently thanks to the work of Qiang Yu there has been much work hitting upstream Mesa for beginning to enable using the ACO compiler by the RadeonSI Gallium3D driver.
A new set of patches this weekend begin laying the groundwork for Rust abstractions for Linux network device drivers so that Rust code can be used for constructing new network device drivers. The patches also include a dummy Rust network driver.
One of the most interesting aspects of the new AMD Ryzen 7040 series laptop processors is the new "Ryzen AI" capabilities with the new XDNA AI engine capabilities built into the SoC, leveraging IP from their Xilinx acquisition. Linux support details remain scarce but at least one of their (Windows) demos for showcasing Ryzen AI is open-source.
On Friday a big set of patches affecting the AMDGPU/Radeon/AMDKFD kernel drivers were submitted for DRM-Next to queue until the Linux 6.5 kernel merge window opens in the coming weeks. A lot of new feature code is part of this pull for benefiting new hardware, continuing to refine AMD GPU power management under Linux, and more.
With Intel TDX and AMD SEV-SNP for better securing virtual machines on the mainline Linux kernel, memory is accepted/initialized immediately at boot time by the VMs although the capability exists to have "unaccepted memory" where that memory is only dealt with by the VMs later on or on an as-needed basis. For two years now Intel engineers have been working on this unaccepted memory support and this week posted their thirteenth iteration of these fundamental Linux kernel patches.
The Portable Computing Language "PoCL" began as an open-source CPU-based OpenCL implementation that has become quite a comprehensive implementation over the years. But in leveraging the LLVM/Clang compiler stack, over time PoCL has grown beyond just a CPU implementation to also support OpenCL execution on NVIDIA GPUs, AMD HSA-capable GPUs, and more. The latest now coming with PoCL 4.0 is support for Intel Level Zero execution for running this OpenCL implementation over Intel Arc Graphics GPUs.
Serpent OS started out as a new Linux distribution started by Ikey Doherty, the same developer that rose to fame for starting the Solus Linux distribution prior to a hiatus. Serpent OS was getting off the ground when the surprise full-circle announcement came in April that Solus Linux would build off Serpent OS.
KDE developer Nate Graham began his weekly development recap by noting that Plasma 6.0 development continues and its stability is improving daily as well as seeing new features.
On Monday, 5 June, will mark 19 years since I started Phoronix.com to focus on Linux hardware reviews.
Kicking off a number of interesting articles over the week ahead for the Phoronix 19th birthday week is a fresh look at how AMD's official open-source Linux Vulkan driver "AMDVLK" compares to Mesa's RADV Vulkan driver that tends to be more popular with Linux gamers and is the driver backed by Valve, Red Hat, and other stakeholders.
Linux laptop/desktop vendor System76 has made some improvements to their Coreboot open firmware offerings to benefit their latest Intel Core 13th Gen "Raptor Lake" wares as well as prior generation devices.
Red Hat has decided they will be doing less work on desktop applications and will stop shipping LibreOffice as part of a future Red Hat Enterprise Linux release (presumably RHEL10). This is also limiting Red Hat's engagement in working on LibreOffice packaging for Fedora while the hope is that the Flatpak'ed LibreOffice will fill the void.
It's almost a daily occurrence to find interesting Linux kernel patches (and to other open-source projects too!) by Intel's large cabal of open-source engineers. The latest crossing my radar is for allowing the Linux "intel_idle" driver to run inside virtual machine (VM) guests.
The Linux 1-Wire "w1" subsystem is used for supporting drivers with hardware that communicates via a single wire (plus ground) in a simple master-slave configuration The Linux kernel has drivers such as for W1 over GPIO, i2c to W1 bridge, and supporting some very old hardware. The W1 subsystem hasn't seen much work recently while for the upcoming Linux 6.5 cycle will be seeing a larger update.
By pairing Wine and QEMU, Hangover continues as one of the open-source projects working to allow Windows games/apps run on other architectures like AArch64 and potentially POWER, RISC-V, and others too.
The Freedreno Gallium3D driver within Mesa 23.2-devel is now able to expose OpenGL 4.6 support for Qualcomm's Adreno 600 series graphics processors.
Valve just published the Steam Survey results for May 2023 and on a percentage basis show the Steam on Linux marketshare growing ever so slightly.
In addition to System76 developing an in-house Linux laptop design, it also turns out they have been working on a new desktop/workstation PC offering.
For those fond of the Apache NetBeans integrated development environment, NetBeans 18 is now available as the latest version of this programming IE primarily geared for Java, PHP, and HTML5/CSS development.
There is a Linux kernel scheduler patch now queued via TIP's sched/core branch that can help with task scheduling on AMD processors sporting multiple last-level caches (LLCs / L3 cache) per die. This minor improvement came after a discovery by a Linux kernel developer on his AMD Zen 2 desktop.
Chinese hardware vendor Loongson is working on extending the open-source, reverse-engineered Etnaviv Linux kernel graphics driver so it has PCI device support and in turn will work with their hardware based on the Vivante graphics IP.
Intel engineer Peter Zijlstra on Wednesday posted the latest patches for the EEVDF scheduler, the Earliest Eligible Virtual Deadline First approach that is based on a research paper from the late 90's. Ultimately the hope is for EEVDF to replace the existing CFS scheduler code.
For those interested in GPU overclocking, AMD has posted the patches for implementing the "legacy" OverDrive overclocking infrastructure for newer SMU13-based Radeon RX 7000 series graphics cards with the AMDGPU open-source Linux kernel driver.
In case you missed any of the Phoronix articles in May due to holidays or other factors, here is a look back at the most popular open-source and Linux content among the 239 original articles published on Phoronix during the past month.
Intel has released a major update to its wonderful, open-source OpenVINO toolkit for optimizing and deploying AI inference. OpenVINO continues working out great for optimizing and running AI models on a variety of hardware and continues to introduce new features.
Following yesterday's release of Chrome 114, Google today promoted the Chrome 115 series to beta.
AMD's open-source Linux graphics driver engineers have out a rather significant set of patches this week to their display code "DC" for the AMDGPU kernel graphics driver.
For next year's Ubuntu 24.04 LTS release, Canonical is planning to offer an Ubuntu Core based immutable desktop OS flavor as an alternative to the traditional Ubuntu Desktop image. A new Ubuntu.com blog post today outlines Ubuntu Core usage for an immutable Linux desktop.
There's been a proposal in the works for Fedora 39 to raise its default vm.max_map_count in order to satisfy some Windows games running on Linux via Valve's Steam Play. A revised proposal has now been approved by the Fedora Engineering and Steering Committee.
The openSUSE project announced that MicroOS Desktop GNOME has been renamed to openSUSE Aeon and MicroOS Desktop Plasma is now known as openSUSE Kalpa.
Linux Foundation Europe has announced the RISC-V Software Ecosystem (RISE) Project to help facilitate more performant, commercial-ready software for the RISC-V processor architecture.
FFmpeg's next release (v6.1) will prove quite exciting with Vulkan Video support merged for decoding H.264, H.265/HEVC, and AV1 content. Plus there are more Vulkan Video features and other improvements in the next version.
The V3D Gallium3D driver that is most notably used by the latest Raspberry Pi single board computers has landed support in mainline Mesa for native ASTC texture compression support.
With yesterday's NVIDIA R535 Linux driver beta one of the unlisted changes with this driver update is revising the driver license around the firmware handling to make it more explicit around permitting the GPU System Processor (GSP) firmware binaries to make it easier for redistribution and use by the Nouveau open-source kernel driver.
Armbian 23.05 is out today as this Arm-focused Debian-based Linux distribution effort is approaching its tenth anniversary.