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The HSA Foundation Has Been Eerily Quiet As We Roll Into 2021

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  • The HSA Foundation Has Been Eerily Quiet As We Roll Into 2021

    Phoronix: The HSA Foundation Has Been Eerily Quiet As We Roll Into 2021

    Much of the Heterogeneous System Architecture (HSA) steam was lost when AMD began focusing on its Radeon Open eCosystem (ROCm) software stack. While AMD was just one of several founding members, there doesn't seem to be much going on for the HSA effort as we roll into 2021 and in fact their website has been down for an extended period of time...

    http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?pag...iet-Start-2021

  • #2
    To be dead, first you'd need to be alive...

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    • #3
      "It's dead, Jim."

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      • #4
        Lisa Su shot HSA dead in the head when she came on board to save AMD. The only non ARM company employing HSA was AMD. When Lisa and Jim Keller tasked the engineers to save AMD and become competitive again in the high dollar margin world of HPC and Servers there was a quick determination that pursuing an HSA type SoC such as Kaveri, Carrizo and Bristol Ridge where not only the GPU was on die with the CPU but with a matched memory address space between the CPU and GPU was too costly, too hot, too slow in IPC and too slow to scale down. Much as how Intel is stuck at 14nm now, at the time Lisa Su took over, AMD was stuck at 28nm.

        Also, there was no cohesive or coherent heterogenous software stack at AMD to support HSA on x86. And the only Arch that had that kind of stack was ARM and Lisa Su killed off AMD's ARM based K 12 server SoC along with the HSA oriented Fusion processors such as the aforementioned Kaveri, Carrizo and Bristol Ridge

        Thus.. HSA is dead. The work simply continues as it has amongst the various ARM vendors and the only hope of seeing HSA return to x86 is with the finalization of HMM in the Linux kernel along with ROCm, and the unveiling of the 3rd Generation of AMD's Infinity Architecture where everything is connected to everything with cache coherency and zero memory copy. That won't happen until next year with the release of the Genoa server CPU and Zen 4 for the consumer CPU. We may not see a Zen 4 with integrated RDNA2 GPU based APU until well into 2022 or even 2023.

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        • #5
          While the website was down before, it is quite telling that nothing came to light from their China Regional Committee. There were some reports about some workgroups long ago but we have never seen updated specs seeing the light of the day. I suppose the current political climate would make it toxic for US companies to follow-up on this anyway. So yes, I suppose HSA is on life support right now, if not dead already. Maybe SYCL, oneAPI or ROCm will take its place.

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          • #6
            that site is working for me (http://www.hsafoundation.com/)

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            • #7
              Even if The HSA Foundation is dead, I think the idea lives on and perhaps will become more prominent. Nvidia is buying ARM from Softbank so they will be pushing hard for ARM and maybe for ARM in the cloud with Nvidia GPUs and maybe ARM with integrated GeForce graphics, so maybe even ARM on the desktop.

              Apple migrated from x86 to ARM and is rumored to be making a 64 core ARM CPU for their Mac Pro. Microsoft is improving Windows 10 and Windows 10X for ARM. Perhaps soon Intel and AMD will be tempted to leave x86 and come up with ARM CPUs too seeing how well Apple's new 64 core M12X processor will perform and seeing what Nvidia unfolds.

              AMD already had their ARM-based Zen processor internally that they cancelled, maybe they would want to resurrect that. Intel does have an ARM license since the old XScale days.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by loganj View Post
                that site is working for me (http://www.hsafoundation.com/)
                Aye, the website is up again. The last post is from 2018 however.

                I still would like to see all these accelerators and compute units working together more seamlessly in a single-source model which is also performance-portable across different implementations.

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                • #9
                  The latest SAM or resizeable BAR reminds me of the HSA spirit. For me it sounds like Mantle it is dead but lives still in future products or ideas.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by loganj View Post
                    that site is working for me (http://www.hsafoundation.com/)
                    Looks like they brought the site back online today...
                    Michael Larabel
                    http://www.michaellarabel.com/

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