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Loongson Improvements Land In Linux 5.7 To Improve The Chinese MIPS CPUs

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  • Loongson Improvements Land In Linux 5.7 To Improve The Chinese MIPS CPUs

    Phoronix: Loongson Improvements Land In Linux 5.7 To Improve The Chinese MIPS CPUs

    The MIPS architecture improvements for Linux 5.7 are headlined by Loongson support improvements for those Chinese manufactured MIPS64 platforms...

    http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?pag...oved-Linux-5.7

  • #2
    I ordered one yesterday. It's in transit. Some images: https://imgur.com/a/ZcXveYq

    Comment


    • #3
      Where did you order that from? Is that possible to order in the US?

      What distros support that?

      Comment


      • #4
        @MichaelChou: Write a review on Phoronix when it arrives

        Comment


        • #5
          oh long johnson

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by mattmatteh View Post
            Where did you order that from?
            I am in Mainland China

            Originally posted by mattmatteh View Post
            Is that possible to order in the US?
            AFAIK there are no retailers to sell it overseas. The only way is to ask someone to bring it or mail it to you. And you don't have customer support.

            Jonathan Carter, a Debian developer, received a 2K1000 board at FOSDEM 2020 (https://jonathancarter.org/2020/02/1...oongson-pi-2k/ https://wiki.debian.org/MIPS/LoongsonPi), though 2K series have a different performance/power target than 3A/3B/3C series.

            My point is that these boards are not popular among ordinary users even in China, at least for now.

            Originally posted by mattmatteh View Post
            What distros support that?
            TLDR: no mainstream distros support it out of box, but any distro with mips64el support (Debian, Gentoo, etc.) can run with a custom kernel, until mainline kernel is ready.

            Out of tree kernel source: https://github.com/loongson-community/linux-stable
            One of the mainlining efforts: https://github.com/FlyGoat/linux (you can see there's still some work for the southbridge 7A1000)

            There's a dozen of China made distros that support it, e.g. UOS, NeoKylin, Deepin, etc., they all have special Loongson editions while supporting other architectures. They have different user base and popularity in China.

            I want to mention Loongnix (http://www.loongnix.org/) from Loongson Technology Co. Ltd. itself. It serves as the reference and demonstration OS, and the umbrella for porting & optimizing kernel and other software for MIPS & LoongISA.
            Current released 1.0 edition is based on Fedora 21, and the kernel & software versions are extremely old. (http://www.loongnix.org/index.php/Release-notes)
            I heard the internal 2.0 edition have newer versions (for kernel at least 4.19), but its released date is still unknown (likely in 2020).

            A lot of software from Loongnix are individually optimized for https://zh.wikipedia.org/wiki/LoongISA They have different upstreaming status.

            For example ffmpeg with specially optimized codecs.
            Speed comparison: http://www.loongnix.org/index.php/Ff...B5%8B%E8%AF%95
            Upstream commits: https://git.ffmpeg.org/gitweb/ffmpeg...mit&s=loongson

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by curaga View Post
              @MichaelChou: Write a review on Phoronix when it arrives
              Of course. I will write an article or even make a video of unboxing & assembling.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by MichaelChou View Post
                I am in Mainland China


                AFAIK there are no retailers to sell it overseas. The only way is to ask someone to bring it or mail it to you. And you don't have customer support.

                Jonathan Carter, a Debian developer, received a 2K1000 board at FOSDEM 2020 (https://jonathancarter.org/2020/02/1...oongson-pi-2k/ https://wiki.debian.org/MIPS/LoongsonPi), though 2K series have a different performance/power target than 3A/3B/3C series.

                My point is that these boards are not popular among ordinary users even in China, at least for now.


                ...Stuff about the state of mips64el support in Linux...
                That's a lot of work to get a proper distribution working with mips64el. Also, Loongnix appears to be lagging badly behind. I don't really anticipate any sane client using Loongson hardware except for government computers, as that is where the CCP has made moving away from x64 a goal.

                For the everyday person in China, computers are still predominantly powered by x64 for client and server computing; i don't think that will change for at least another two decades. I understand that the CCP is concerned about losing access to x64 if the US decides use Intel and AMD as weapons to attack the Chinese economy, but I am cautiously optimistic that things will not deteriorate to such a state.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by MichaelChou View Post
                  I am in Mainland China


                  AFAIK there are no retailers to sell it overseas. The only way is to ask someone to bring it or mail it to you. And you don't have customer support.

                  Jonathan Carter, a Debian developer, received a 2K1000 board at FOSDEM 2020 (https://jonathancarter.org/2020/02/1...oongson-pi-2k/ https://wiki.debian.org/MIPS/LoongsonPi), though 2K series have a different performance/power target than 3A/3B/3C series.

                  My point is that these boards are not popular among ordinary users even in China, at least for now.


                  TLDR: no mainstream distros support it out of box, but any distro with mips64el support (Debian, Gentoo, etc.) can run with a custom kernel, until mainline kernel is ready.

                  Out of tree kernel source: https://github.com/loongson-community/linux-stable
                  One of the mainlining efforts: https://github.com/FlyGoat/linux (you can see there's still some work for the southbridge 7A1000)

                  There's a dozen of China made distros that support it, e.g. UOS, NeoKylin, Deepin, etc., they all have special Loongson editions while supporting other architectures. They have different user base and popularity in China.

                  I want to mention Loongnix (http://www.loongnix.org/) from Loongson Technology Co. Ltd. itself. It serves as the reference and demonstration OS, and the umbrella for porting & optimizing kernel and other software for MIPS & LoongISA.
                  Current released 1.0 edition is based on Fedora 21, and the kernel & software versions are extremely old. (http://www.loongnix.org/index.php/Release-notes)
                  I heard the internal 2.0 edition have newer versions (for kernel at least 4.19), but its released date is still unknown (likely in 2020).

                  A lot of software from Loongnix are individually optimized for https://zh.wikipedia.org/wiki/LoongISA They have different upstreaming status.

                  For example ffmpeg with specially optimized codecs.
                  Speed comparison: http://www.loongnix.org/index.php/Ff...B5%8B%E8%AF%95
                  Upstream commits: https://git.ffmpeg.org/gitweb/ffmpeg...mit&s=loongson
                  http://mirror.lemote.com:8000/fedora/fedora28-live/

                  You may also check Fedora28 ported by Lemote, which has newer software version. It doesn't have a official release page but images can be downloaded here.
                  My plan is to make Loongson-7A1000 at least bootable with mainline kernel in next release cycle (5.8).
                  And I'm also trying to push a little bit on the QEMU TCG support for Loongson-3 family of processors.

                  Loongson seems not very interested in mainline their infrastructure softwares, and they even had some conflicts with the community.

                  Btw: We had a talk with the embedded department of Loongson company, and they'd agree to make some devices available for oversea developers. They're already working on the details. So let's let's looking forward :-)

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by MichaelChou View Post
                    I ordered one yesterday. It's in transit. Some images: https://imgur.com/a/ZcXveYq
                    Very interesting, thank you!

                    It's clear from the pictures that the board accepts DDR4 RAM. Is the DDR4 RAM controller firmware ever going to be libre software? Last time I checked, even OpenPOWER boards from Raptor Engineering didn't have fully libre firmware for that.

                    In any case, it should be an interesting development board to test MIPS builds.

                    Comment

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