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System76 To Explore Offering High-End ARM Linux Laptops / Desktops

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  • superstructor
    replied
    Originally posted by starshipeleven View Post
    I meant that you will be using that forever as blobs won't ever be updated for the next LTS.
    That is FUD. In fact, the embedded team at NVIDIA will be releasing Ubuntu 18.04 LTS with CUDA 10.1 etc as an update for Jetson TX2 later this month. For pretty much every single NVIDIA product they provide support on the latest OS going back several generations of hardware.

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  • jacob
    replied
    I don't see much point in using ARM for a desktop PC, to be honest, but in a laptop that's another story. No more heat problems and 15+ hours autonomy with hardware designed for use with Linux (even if it will still need blob drivers), now that would be a great proposition.

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  • bobwya
    replied
    Just wow... Who was that total dufous interviewer in the embedded video... Ignoring the chance to show of Redox... Plus generally have no f***** clue what he was talking about...

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  • starshipeleven
    replied
    Originally posted by sandy8925 View Post
    starshipeleven - That's not enough. You need open source GPU, WiFi, Bluetooth, camera drivers.
    What part of "not using shitty mobile SoCs" you don't understand?
    If you are making a laptop or even a desktop you have better choice.

    Midrange networking an industrial SoCs like the ones I mentioned don't even have wifi and bluetooth integrated so it will be functionality provided by a M.2 card just like in a laptop, and even if they do have a camera controller you can just not give a shit about it and use a UVC camera/mic (i.e. standard driver webcam) on USB bus like every laptop does for its own internal camera.

    As for the GPU, Vivante GPU used in iMX8 from FXP and Armada lineup with a GPU from Marvell has open drivers (etnaviv), plus they can mount AMD gpus on PCIe (either embedded for laptops or on a PCIe slot for a desktop), and they will work fine as the open driver works on any architecture.
    Last edited by starshipeleven; 05 March 2019, 11:09 AM.

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  • sandy8925
    replied
    starshipeleven - That's not enough. You need open source GPU, WiFi, Bluetooth, camera drivers. High quality ones like Intel's. I admire the reverse engineering efforts of various people, but has anyone been able to run stable systems with all features enabled? As far as I know, this hasn't happened yet.

    So no, none of the ARM systems are usable from a GNU/Linux distro point of view. Until the driver situation changes, they're only going to be good if you're a plain consumer and don't care about tinkering with your system.

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  • starshipeleven
    replied
    Originally posted by sandy8925 View Post
    Sigh. This will not be a good experience for power users. The only way this works is if you ship with some system like ChromeOS, Android etc. which ship with closed source drivers.
    Not really. On a laptop or desktop (or anything you want to market as "decent performance") you should not use shitty mobile hardware, but midrange embedded networking or industrial SoCs like NXP or Marvell, which also happen to be the ones with good u-boot support (important if you want UEFI as it's usually u-boot-EFI, not true UEFI firmware), and good opensource support.

    Decent SoCs from that ranges have a bunch of PCIe lanes, Sata and USB 3.0 controllers, and Vivante GPUs for those that need to drive a screen, that work fine on Linux. They may not be able to actually fill more than a mini-itx board, but it's enough for most.

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  • sandy8925
    replied
    Sigh. This will not be a good experience for power users. The only way this works is if you ship with some system like ChromeOS, Android etc. which ship with closed source drivers. You're stuck with those closed source drivers, forever. Which means you're stuck with old kernel versions and closed source userspace that will not support aomethsom you'll need in the future.

    If you want to just use a device as a consumer, without the ability to do any useful tinkering.

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  • starshipeleven
    replied
    Originally posted by superstructor View Post
    Sure, I use Ubuntu 18.04 LTS on most of my systems.
    I though that the "until the end of time" was obvious enough.

    I meant that you will be using that forever as blobs won't ever be updated for the next LTS.

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  • superstructor
    replied
    Originally posted by starshipeleven View Post
    You enjoy using Ubuntu LTS until the end of time?
    Sure, I use Ubuntu 18.04 LTS on most of my systems. Sure the theme in 18.10 is nicer, but you can also install that in 18.04. Otherwise as a developer 18.04 is much better overall as it is well supported. For pretty much anything you want, there is probably an official or at least decent quality 18.04 repository.

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  • starshipeleven
    replied
    Originally posted by wizard69 View Post
    Lots of good reasons frankly. For one your performance per watt is excellent.
    Not really.
    You have a significant advantage in cores available.
    Yes but we are talking of total crap cores, and this means it's like Avotons (Atom-based server chips with large amounts of cores) that still suck at running desktop applications.

    Frankly im not sure why you wouldn’t want an ARM based machine. ARM is pretty much the future of computing. As a developer it is hard to beat cores.
    The only way you say that is because Apple is involved, and no, loads of crappy cores can be beaten easily outside of servers as you don't have massively parallel workloads in desktops.

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