Latest Linux Hardware Reviews, Open-Source News & Benchmarks

Open-Source NVIDIA Vulkan "NVK" Driver Continues Progressing
Open-Source NVIDIA Vulkan "NVK" Driver Continues Progressing
10 Hours Ago - NVIDIA - NVK - 16 Comments

As written about for several months on Phoronix, an open-source NVIDIA Vulkan driver has been in the works that by the end of the summer this "NVK" driver has been seeing a lot of activity by Jason Ekstrand of Collabora along with David Airlie and Karol Herbst of Red Hat. Jason today talked at XDC 2022 about this NVK driver effort.

Disabling Spectre V2 Mitigations Is What Can Impair AMD Ryzen 7000 Series Performance
Disabling Spectre V2 Mitigations Is What Can Impair AMD Ryzen 7000 Series Performance
17 Hours Ago - Software - 25 Comments

Last week I shared some initial numbers how surprisingly when disabling Zen 4 CPU security mitigations can actually *hurt* the Ryzen 7000 series CPU performance. While conventional wisdom and with past Intel/AMD processors yield better performance when disabling the CPU security mitigations, with the Ryzen 9 7950X it was found to be basically the opposite. I have since conducted more tests and using an AMD Ryzen 5 7600X to confirm the earlier results and dig deeper into the data.

3 October

Linux 6.1 Feature Would Have Caught All memcpy Based Buffer Overflows Of Recent Years
Linux 6.1 Feature Would Have Caught All memcpy Based Buffer Overflows Of Recent Years
3 October 01:30 PM EDT - Linux Security - Hardening The Kernel - 16 Comments

A kernel hardening security improvement on the way for Linux 6.1 is the ability to provide warning of possible memcpy() based overflows. Right now this is only a warning but it's work towards being able to address "trivially detectable" buffer overflow conditions within the kernel and in the future may be able to block such overflows from happening.

AMD Rembrandt CPUFreq vs. AMD P-State Linux Testing
AMD Rembrandt CPUFreq vs. AMD P-State Linux Testing
3 October 11:30 AM EDT - Software - 18 Comments

Before getting busy with the AMD Ryzen 7000 "Zen 4" desktop testing, I recently wrapped up some benchmarks looking at the ACPI CPUFreq vs. AMD P-State frequency scaling drivers and various governor options for the AMD Ryzen 6000 "Rembrandt" mobile SoCs. If you are curious about the impact of CPUFreq/P-State and the various governors for the latest AMD laptops running Linux, this round of testing is for you.

Debian To Carry Patches For GNOME Dynamic Triple Buffering
Debian To Carry Patches For GNOME Dynamic Triple Buffering
3 October 06:13 AM EDT - Debian - Debian + Dynamic Triple Buffering - 26 Comments

There's been a lot happening in Debian recently from improving their handling of non-free firmware to switching to PipeWire and WirePlumber with Debian 12. Another change on the way is picking up Ubuntu's work on dynamic triple buffering for the GNOME desktop.

GNU Linux-libre 6.0 Released After More Blob Cleaning
GNU Linux-libre 6.0 Released After More Blob Cleaning
3 October 05:29 AM EDT - Linux Kernel - GNU Linux-libre 6.0-gnu - 4 Comments

Following yesterday's release of the upstream Linux 6.0 kernel, the GNU FSFLA folks have released GNU Linux-libre 6.0 as their downstream that removes driver support for loading binary firmware/microcode and the ability to load non-free-software kernel modules.

2 October

The Most Interesting New Features Of Linux 6.0
The Most Interesting New Features Of Linux 6.0
2 October 05:55 AM EDT - Linux Kernel - Linux 6.0 New Features - 16 Comments

Barring any last minute reservations today by Linus Torvalds, the Linux 6.0 stable kernel is expected to be christened before the day is through. Linux 6.0 comes with many notable hardware support additions and other improvements, here is a reminder of all what is great about this imminent kernel release.

1 October

Steam On Linux Usage Receded Slightly In September
Steam On Linux Usage Receded Slightly In September
1 October 08:44 PM EDT - Valve - Lower Steam Linux Marketshare - 32 Comments

While the Steam on Linux marketshare has been consistently increasing this year since the launch of the Arch Linux powered Steam Deck, the September 2022 numbers are in and surprisingly there is a slight pull-back in Linux use.

System76's Pop!_OS COSMIC Desktop To Make Use Of Iced Rust Toolkit Rather Than GTK
System76's Pop!_OS COSMIC Desktop To Make Use Of Iced Rust Toolkit Rather Than GTK
1 October 03:12 PM EDT - Desktop - Iced-Rs For COSMIC Desktop - 114 Comments

System76 has been developing their own COSMIC desktop as the next evolution for their Pop!_OS Linux distribution built atop an Ubuntu base. Interestingly with this big COSMIC desktop undertaking, which is being written in the Rust programming language, they have decided to shift away from using the GTK toolkit to instead make use of Iced-Rs as a Rust-native, multi-platform graphical toolkit.

Rust Infrastructure Pull Request Submitted For Linux 6.1!
Rust Infrastructure Pull Request Submitted For Linux 6.1!
1 October 01:24 PM EDT - Linux Kernel - Rust For Linux 6.1 - 64 Comments

It's happening, folks! Linus Torvalds already indicated recently he intends to pull the initial Rust programming language support into the Linux 6.1 kernel cycle and today that pull request was submitted to him. Linux 6.0 isn't out yet but should be on Sunday unless any last minute problems, which in turn will mark the start of the two week v6.1 merge window.

AMD Revises Work On GPU Workload Hinting For Linux
AMD Revises Work On GPU Workload Hinting For Linux
1 October 08:39 AM EDT - Radeon - Workload Hints - 6 Comments

AMD's Linux graphics driver engineers this week sent out their latest patch series working on workload hints that are used for dynamically tuning the power profile of AMD GPU SoCs based upon the specified workload indicator.

AMD Ryzen 7000 Series, Linux 6.0, MGLRU, Rust & IO_uring Made For An Exciting September
1 October 05:29 AM EDT - Phoronix - September 2022 - 1 Comment

It was a very exciting September with the launch of the AMD Ryzen 7000 series "Zen 4" processors, Intel revealing a lot more about Arc Graphics, Linux 6.0 getting buttoned up while feature work toward Linux 6.1 accelerated, ongoing exciting kernel work around MGLRU / IO_uring / RT / etc, and other software releases like GNOME 43 and LLVM 15 all made for an eventful month.

30 September

Google Announces Lyra V2 Low Bit-Rate Voice Codec
30 September 04:11 PM EDT - Google - Google Lyra V2 - 18 Comments

Last year Google announced the Lyra voice codec for low bit-rates that combined with the open AV1 codec could lead to voice chats on 56kbps connections. Lyra makes use of machine learning and other techniques for extremely low bit-rate speech compression that can function at 3kbps. Google last year open-sourced the Lyra code while today they announced the availability of Lyra V2.

With AMD Zen 4, It's Surprisingly Not Worthwhile Disabling CPU Security Mitigations
30 September 01:30 PM EDT - AMD - mitigations=off - 70 Comments

While some Linux enthusiasts eagerly recommend users boot their systems with the "mitigations=off" kernel parameter for run-time disabling of various relevant CPU security mitigations for Spectre, Meltdown, L1TF, TAA, Retbleed, and friends, with the new AMD Ryzen 7000 "Zen 4" processors while still needing some software mitigations, it's surprisingly faster for the most part leaving the relevant mitigations enabled.

Linux 6.1 Change Aims To Auto-Detect Logitech HID++ High Resolution Scrolling Support
30 September 12:30 PM EDT - Hardware - Logitech HID++ High-Res Scrolling - 5 Comments

Currently Linux's Logitech HID++ driver "hid-logitech-hidpp" relies on a static list of device quirks for indicating which Logitech mice support high resolution scrolling. With the upcoming Linux 6.1 kernel, the plan is to change that list of devices/quirks and to automatically determine if a device supports high resolution scrolling.

AMD Sends Last Minute Fixes To Linux 6.0 For RDNA3 Graphics Cards
30 September 11:00 AM EDT - Radeon - Fixes - 4 Comments

Linux 6.0 should be released as stable on Sunday unless Linus Torvalds has last minute reservations and decides to extend the cycle by an extra week. AMD has sent in a last minute set of patches for their AMDGPU kernel driver with Linux 6.0 for dealing with what appear to be the upcoming RDNA3 graphics cards.

Zink Enables OpenGL Threading For "Huge Perf Gains"
30 September 06:00 AM EDT - Mesa - Zink + glthread - 10 Comments

Recently the open-source AMD OpenGL driver "RadeonSI" enabled OpenGL threading by default for the "glthread" option that has long been opt-in on a per-game/app basis. Along with that has been a number of glthread-related improvements to this code that punts executing OpenGL calls to a separate CPU thread. The Zink OpenGL-on-Vulkan driver has now unconditionally enabled OpenGL threading too.

Intel, Microsoft & Arm Continue Advancing The Cloud-Hypervisor With v27 Released
30 September 04:48 AM EDT - Virtualization - Cloud Hypervisor 27 - Add A Comment

Cloud-Hypervisor as what started as an open-source project by Intel and now run under the Linux Foundation umbrella as a Rust-based, modern-focused hypervisor for cloud workloads keeps on advancing. In addition to Intel, Microsoft and Arm continue investing significant resources into Cloud-Hypervisor for this security-focused VMM for running Windows and Linux guests.

29 September

Google Shutting Down Its Stadia Game Streaming Service
29 September 12:30 PM EDT - Google - Google Stadia - 85 Comments

Back in 2019 Google announced Stadia as their cloud gaming service using Linux, embracing Vulkan, and leveraging AMD graphics. While promising at first, it's been dwindling down and Google announced today they are in the process of shutting down this streaming service.

Apple M1 Linux GPU DRM Driver Now Running GNOME, Various Apps
29 September 08:50 AM EDT - Apple - Apple Rust Driver Progress - 38 Comments

It was just yesterday that reverse-engineering, open-source driver developer Asahi Lina got the display output working and running Wayland's Weston. After a long day hacking away on this first Rust-written Direct Rendering Manager (DRM) driver, the GNOME desktop is even running off this Apple M1 graphics driver as well as applications like Firefox complete with YouTube.

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