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Coreboot's Flashrom Working On Radeon GPU Flashing Support

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  • Coreboot's Flashrom Working On Radeon GPU Flashing Support

    Phoronix: Coreboot's Flashrom Working On Radeon GPU Flashing Support

    Former RadeonHD driver developer Luc Verhaegen is back at the AMD Radeon GPU reverse-engineering game. He's now pursuing Radeon firmware flashing with the Coreboot Flashrom utility...

    http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?pag...MD-SPI-Patches

  • #2
    His blog reveals some pretty interesting stuff and is well written. Can only recommend reading

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    • #3
      This past fight he talks about between ATI and AMD's driver efforts are way over my head to judge, but his blog post reads like a vendetta to me: "So much for history, as giving ATI the two fingered salute is actually more of an added bonus for me."

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      • #4
        While interesting, it read like a bridgman smear campaign.

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        • #5
          So there is a chance there will be FOSS firmware for modern AMD GPUs too? No DRM and all?

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          • #6
            Pretty cool - Linux desperately needs tools like this. When I OC my GPUs, I like to modify the BIOS of them so the changes apply across reboots without the need of any other 3rd party applications running in the background.

            Originally posted by shmerl View Post
            So there is a chance there will be FOSS firmware for modern AMD GPUs too? No DRM and all?
            Not necessarily. As far as I'm concerned, you can still upload an open-source firmware to your GPU via atiflash (a closed-source Windows utility).
            Last edited by schmidtbag; 10-17-2018, 11:11 AM.

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            • #7
              Sounds like he's not a big fan of bridgman ... But besides that the VEGA part is wrong or at least only partialy right. Flashing VEGA is one side of the medal. The other side is you can't flash modified BIOSes to VEGA hardware. Only with a signed BIOS the GPU will start. So even if it is nice to have an open-source flashtool you can't get modified BIOSes to work on VEGA hardware.

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              • #8
                This is why a Linux CoC exists. J/K

                Honestly though, while it might not seem all that nice, when Luc took a shot across the bow at the Raspi team, they returned fire (eventually) with a fully loaded open stack.

                Already pondering the return shot . . .

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by shmerl View Post
                  So there is a chance there will be FOSS firmware for modern AMD GPUs too? No DRM and all?
                  There very likely would have been. And then AMD lost it, between bad products, the credit crunch, and the ATI rubbleheap, openness died. And there are a few X.org community members who helped make it so.

                  But no, open firmware is not very likely today. There is little useful information made public any more. And i do not have the resources to do more than scratch the surface and expose the rot, and even there i seem to be the only doing so.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Yoshi View Post
                    Sounds like he's not a big fan of bridgman ... But besides that the VEGA part is wrong or at least only partialy right. Flashing VEGA is one side of the medal. The other side is you can't flash modified BIOSes to VEGA hardware. Only with a signed BIOS the GPU will start. So even if it is nice to have an open-source flashtool you can't get modified BIOSes to work on VEGA hardware.
                    As stated, i do not have vega hardware. I had read some rumours, but saw nothing solid, and kept focussed on the hardware i could test.

                    I am wondering how they would achieve such lock-down though. Given that no-one before me has gone and REed the trivial standard SPI interface for earlier cards, i would not depend on rumours here.

                    The latest version of ATIFlash contains code for flashing vega, and some valuable info, and some functions which look remarkably like what i have seen in the linux version. So if the windows version can flash vega BIOSes, is it perhaps atiwinflash that checks the signed binary before flashing? How would a trivial hw spi interface figure out whether this binary is correctly signed? Is there even an external SPI chip still? How does ATI or the board makers put the initial BIOS on these cards? How does ATI execute atomBIOS's ASICInit(), and would that still bring up the whole hardware, and would that really needed to be loaded from the SPI rom?

                    There something weird going on there, and i think there is a chance that either ATI has severely crippled their hw, or are just using smoke and mirrors, or, in case of a magic knock, we should be able to reproduce the knock.

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