Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Raptor's Blackbird Arrives As The Most Open-Source Yet Fast Desktop System

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Raptor's Blackbird Arrives As The Most Open-Source Yet Fast Desktop System

    Phoronix: Raptor's Blackbird Arrives As The Most Open-Source Yet Fast Desktop System

    The Blackbird has arrived for testing! As written about last week, the Blackbird has begun shipping and is in mass production as the micro-ATX POWER9 system that is the little brother to Raptor Computing System's long-standing, high-performance, fully open-source Talos II workstation. The Raptor Blackbird is lower-cost while being able to handle up to 160 Watt Sforza 8-core processors, dual DDR4 ECC memory modules, one PCI Express 4.0 x16 slot, dual Gigabit Ethernet, and other common features of desktop/workstation motherboards.

    http://www.phoronix.com/vr.php?view=27916

  • #2
    Been waiting a long time for this day! Does the built-in HDMI work? That's my number one question. Number two question is what will you use in the PCIe 4.0 slot? I'm assuming that's for a 5 gbps SSD of some sort?

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by andyprough View Post
      Been waiting a long time for this day! Does the built-in HDMI work? That's my number one question. Number two question is what will you use in the PCIe 4.0 slot? I'm assuming that's for a 5 gbps SSD of some sort?
      Onboard HDMI works fine if you just care about 2D (or 3D via LLVMpipe).

      Will test graphics cards eventually. And then as PCIe 4.0 NVMe SSDs, etc, come to market, will give it a whirl there compared to AMD.
      Michael Larabel
      http://www.michaellarabel.com/

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Michael View Post

        Onboard HDMI works fine if you just care about 2D (or 3D via LLVMpipe).

        Will test graphics cards eventually. And then as PCIe 4.0 NVMe SSDs, etc, come to market, will give it a whirl there compared to AMD.
        Yes, just the 2D, not for games. Please let us know if you are getting adequate video through that port, resolution options, and so forth. And obviously it will be most interesting to find out if you end up needing any proprietary firmware for anything, or if you find that the system performs poorly due to a lack of proprietary firmware.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by andyprough View Post

          Yes, just the 2D, not for games. Please let us know if you are getting adequate video through that port, resolution options, and so forth. And obviously it will be most interesting to find out if you end up needing any proprietary firmware for anything, or if you find that the system performs poorly due to a lack of proprietary firmware.
          The firmware is in great shape there is just one note temporarily about the NIC firmware:

          "On that note, this machine will be *completely 100% blob free* once the BCM5719 firmware reaches production status. Right now, just like Talos II, there is a small blob loaded by the NIC itself from a dedicated SPI Flash when machine standby power is connected. A while back we had offered a contest for a free Talos II unit in exchange for a libre firmware for that device, and there is already an alpha firmware available thanks to our very talented developer community. [2] There are zero other binary blobs on this system, which makes the Blackbird quite unique for its overall feature set.
          [2] https://github.com/meklort/bcm5719-fw"
          Michael Larabel
          http://www.michaellarabel.com/

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Michael View Post
            Will test graphics cards eventually.
            Thank you. This board has a 16x pcie slot. I am very curious to know if AMD's open source driver works well when disconnected from x86 with a board like this.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by ezst036 View Post

              Thank you. This board has a 16x pcie slot. I am very curious to know if AMD's open source driver works well when disconnected from x86 with a board like this.
              Sounds like AMD GPU's work fine... With an important caveat. It seems the drivers for newer GPU's only work if you're running in little endian mode. Maybe this is for AMDGPU supported cards? For big endian mode, you'll need an older GPU.

              I may have the driver cut off wrong here, so if you're planning on going with BE, I'd definitely do some research.

              However, for anyone who buys this system and decides they won't want it to be TOO open, it seems Nvidia has blobs for little endian.

              I came for the PPC, and stayed for the openness of the platform (and also still the PPC).

              Unrelated note: When will my BlackBird pre-order ship?!

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by ezst036 View Post
                Thank you. This board has a 16x pcie slot. I am very curious to know if AMD's open source driver works well when disconnected from x86 with a board like this.
                AMD GPU will work fine on little endlian targets risc-v proto boards and many other arm proto boards with pci-e have already turned over AMD graphics cards using open source drivers.

                https://llvm.org/docs/AMDGPUUsage.html
                All AMDGPU targets use ELFDATA2LSB for little-endian byte ordering.
                There is a devil in the details. AMDGPU supported GPU chips themselves are little endian and you will find this is also true of the GPU before AMDGPU.

                The drivers have not been tested on big endian mode recently.

                Originally posted by hiryu View Post
                Maybe this is for AMDGPU supported cards? For big endian mode, you'll need an older GPU.
                No its all AMD/ATI GPU have always been little endian in their silicon with only 1 mode. So going to a older GPU may not help that much thinking the drivers have not been recently tested on big endian mode cpus. Big endian + ATi/AMD GPU equals having todo endian conversions this is not the most helpful if you are after performance. So even if you get the AMD/ATI gpu to work on PPC in big endian mode you will be taking a performance hit.

                Its not like the open source driver developers will not accept patches to fix endian issues they will. But the gpu silicon itself locked as little endian does make cpu big endian configuration seam like a bad choice not regularly tested. Of course if enough people are interested in making sure AMD gpus work on big endian it will happen.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by oiaohm View Post
                  No its all AMD/ATI GPU have always been little endian in their silicon with only 1 mode. So going to a older GPU may not help that much thinking the drivers have not been recently tested on big endian mode cpus. Big endian + ATi/AMD GPU equals having todo endian conversions this is not the most helpful if you are after performance. So even if you get the AMD/ATI gpu to work on PPC in big endian mode you will be taking a performance hit.

                  Its not like the open source driver developers will not accept patches to fix endian issues they will. But the gpu silicon itself locked as little endian does make cpu big endian configuration seam like a bad choice not regularly tested. Of course if enough people are interested in making sure AMD gpus work on big endian it will happen.
                  According to people I've spoken to on #talos-workstation running BE, they are using older GPU's successfully on BE.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    The specs look great! All the things that one can do with 128 GB max ram! However, it's a bummer than no web browser (Firefox or Chromium) works on PowerPC. Several bugs in Firefox have been open for almost a year:

                    https://wiki.raptorcs.com/wiki/Porting/Firefox

                    Is there no-one smart enough to fix these handful of bugs? I mean come on, this should be a walk in the park for the chip maker IBM or its subsidiary, Red Hat!

                    Comment

                    Working...
                    X