Following yesterday's article looking at the performance of Intel's Clear Linux running on AMD EPYC 4th Gen "Genoa" with great performance results even though Clear's kernel was limited to 320 of the 384 available logical CPU cores for the EPYC 9654 2P setup, the kernel has now been adjusted to handle up to 512 CPUs.
Clear Linux News Archives
93 Clear Linux open-source and Linux related news articles on Phoronix since 2015.
While Intel's performance-optimized Clear Linux rolling-release distribution is known for its aggressive performance optimizations, their kernel build had been going with the default "-O2" optimization but last week did switch over to rolling their kernel with -O3.
For those interested in using Distrobox to augment your operating system's package selection, not all containers are created equally. Distrobox developer Luca Di Maio recently did some tests for looking at the Linux container performance.
While our testing has consistently shown how Clear Linux can deliver leading performance on Intel/AMD x86_64 platforms, one of the user criticisms to that distribution has been around the limited selection of packaged software especially on the desktop side. But the rather interesting Distrobox can help address that by leveraging Podman or Docker to run other Linux distribution user-space software packages atop.
With the somewhat surprising announcement this week that Intel's Clear Linux platform would be divesting from the desktop and focusing on server and cloud workloads, the first visible changes on the desktop side are expected next week.
Intel's performance-optimized Clear Linux has made some inroads in the desktop space over the past two years with providing a nice desktop installer last year, enhancing their documentation, and making available more desktop packages. Clear Linux has offered some of the fastest performance even for desktop workloads like web browser performance and has worked out equally well on AMD hardware. But moving forward they are going to be shifting back to their roots on focusing on server and cloud workloads.
One of the common criticisms for those trying to use Clear Linux on the desktop is that it lacks easy access to proprietary packages like Google Chrome and Steam. There has been plumbing within its swupd package/bundle management system to support third-party repositories to expand the ecosystem and now we're finally seeing that happen.
A user experimenting with Clear Linux had an opinion to share on their mailing list and referred to it as a "toy" distribution and some of our readers have expressed similar opinions on it. Here is the response by one of the Intel developers central to Clear Linux's development.
One of the most frequent critiques of Intel's Clear Linux distribution has been its lackluster support in dealing with proprietary/third-party packages like the Google Chrome web browser and Valve's Steam gaming client. Since last summer, Clear Linux has been working on their third-party packaging support with their unique "bundles" system, but not much has been heard on the matter since.
Clear Linux looks poised to join the ranks of the few Linux distributions allowing it to run off an F2FS root file-system.
Given the recent discussions over the default performance of the Linux scheduler, the Liquorix patches to the Linux kernel, and other recent forum discussions over different kernel configurations and flavors, here are some reference benchmarks looking at the performance of some of the kernel options available to Clear Linux users.
Following Fedora's plans to begin using EarlyOOM by default and other recent upstream discussions about Linux's relatively poor performance when it comes to the Linux desktop not handling memory pressure / low RAM situations well, Intel's Clear Linux looks like it will soon offer EarlyOOM as an option.
In addition to Clear Linux seeing more performance optimizations in 2019 (more so than Fedora and Ubuntu during the year), it also benefited from a new desktop installer, new help forums, and more of Intel's partners talking about their current or planned usage of Clear Linux.
With our various ending-2019 and end-of-2010s articles, the standout on the Linux performance front has certainly been Intel's Clear Linux in consistently delivering the leading Linux x86_64 performance throughout all of our testing on many different tests and hardware platforms. Here's a look back at some of the Clear Linux highlights.
One year and one week since announcing the Deep Learning Reference Stack built atop Intel's open-source technologies like Clear Linux and Kata, the Deep Learning Reference Stack 5.0 was released today.
A month ago at the Open-Source Summit Europe 2019 in Lyon, France, Intel's Kelly Hammond who serves as the company's Senior Director of System Platform Software talked up their open-source contributions with a particular emphasis on performance. The video from that keynote was recently published for those curious about Intel's open-source work in the name of performance, including Clear Linux.
Intel developers are still working on some interesting improvements to Clear Linux itself this quarter on top of keeping up to date with the latest upstream software it packages.
For those that had been interested in GNOME 3.34 for Intel's Clear Linux when running their developer-focused, performance-optimized desktop those packages have now landed.
Often when doing cross-distribution benchmarks, readers often comment on the performance of Clear Linux particularly for video encoding use-cases as surprisingly different from other distributions. Some argue that it's just over the default CPU frequency scaling governor or compiler flag defaults, so here is a look at that with Ubuntu 19.10 daily benchmarked against Clear Linux.
For those anxious to make use of GNOME 3.34 with its many own performance improvements atop Intel's performance-optimized Clear Linux rolling-release distribution, it looks like the wait is still going on for a few more days but is coming "soon-ish" to the platform.
Given the interest last week in how Clear Linux dropped their kernel boot time from 3 seconds to 300 ms, here are some fresh boot time benchmarks of Clear Linux compared to Ubuntu 19.10 on both Intel and AMD hardware.
Intel's speedy Clear Linux distribution could be running under the hood of your car.
Intel engineer Feng Tang spoke at this week's Linux Plumbers Conference in Lisbon, Portugal on how the Clear Linux team managed to boot their kernel faster. They started out with around a three second kernel boot time but cut it down to just 300 ms.
You may recall that back in July Intel's Clear Linux team was looking for feedback on Linux developer workflows and other developer preferences. This survey wasn't limited to Clear Linux users and the results are now published which provide for some interesting data points.
Intel's Clear Linux team on Wednesday announced their Deep Learning Reference Stack 4.0 during the Linux Foundation's Open-Source Summit North America event taking place in San Diego.
While Arch Linux remains the gold standard for quality Linux documentation, Intel's Clear Linux has rolled out a new documentation web-site to assist new/existing users in making use of this performance-optimized and security-oriented Linux operating system.
For more than one year we've been hearing of Clear Linux working on Windows WSL support to allow for this performance-optimized Linux distribution to run within Microsoft's Windows Subsystem for Linux. There isn't an official release yet, but at least now is a third-party installer/script for making it possible to setup such a configuration.
Over the course of July, Intel's rolling-release Clear Linux distribution shifted from Linux 5.1 to the brand new Linux 5.2 kernel, pulled in the latest GCC9 branch compiler fixes, updated to Python 3.7.4, rolled out a new OpenJDK build, and had many other package updates and original optimizations applied.
In recent months we've heard of Intel engineers working on better supporting third-party packages on Clear Linux that would be akin to Arch's AUR, Ubuntu's PPA, or Fedora's Copr systems for allowing unofficial/third-party packages to be more easily made available particularly in cases of closed-source software. It looks like that internally that system is now in beta as they work towards having more software available on Clear Linux.
Intel's Clear Linux crew has launched a twelve-question survey seeking feedback on your Linux usage though the survey slightly caters towards developers. While the survey is being put out by Intel's performance-oriented Linux distribution, users of any Linux platform are encouraged to participate.
While Clear Linux as part of its standard bare metal installations has long defaulted to having an AVX2-optimized GNU C Library installed by default, it turns out that it wasn't part of the default os-core bundle as used by containers. That though is changing and should yield even better out-of-the-box performance when running Clear Linux within containers.
Auke Kok of Intel / Clear Linux carried out the distribution's first ask-me-anything session today where he fielded questions ranging from Steam to under-served software projects.
Last month Clear Linux rolled out new kernel options as bundles for those wanting to run a mainline/vanilla kernel build on this Intel open-source distribution without their extra patches applied as well as other options. Here are some benchmarks of those different kernel flavors available to Clear Linux users.
Most Linux distributions allow unfettered access to dmesg for seeing the kernel log outputs, but seeing as kernel addresses can be dumped to this output and could be exploited by bad actors, Clear Linux is joining the select few Linux distributions so far blocking non-root users from seeing this output mostly used for debugging purposes.
If you have been curious about Intel's Clear Linux distribution given its stellar performance, usability improvements now with its new desktop installer and forming of the Clear Linux Developer Edition, and growing industry adoption, tomorrow they are hosting a public event in Santa Clara, California.
Of Intel's many open-source projects, taking a central role at this year's Intel Open-Source Technology Summit was Clear Linux. Most Intel open-source efforts mentioned during the event point back to Clear Linux in some capacity and at OSTS2019 we finally heard some of the companies that are beginning to make use of Clear Linux.
Intel's Clear Linux platform is preparing some new alternative kernel options and they are quite interesting from a testing/benchmarking perspective.
Not only does Intel's Clear Linux distribution offer stellar out of the box performance, but they seem to be making it increasingly user/desktop friendly at this stage. There's been new GUI installer work as well as the launching of their own support forums.
While Clear Linux has been outperforming other Linux distributions the past several years, it's a never ending job for them of continuing to lead the way in squeezing more performance out of x86_64 hardware on Linux. During the month of April, some more performance improvements were achieved though also a few regressions appeared to have slipped into their builds.
Intel's performance-optimized Clear Linux distribution is preparing to be one of the first distributions relying upon LLVM 8 (and Clang 8) out-of-the-box as the latest major release for this widely-used compiler stack.
While we have looked extensively at the performance of generated binaries of user-space applications built under GCC 9, soon we'll be able to benchmark a complete system image built under this annual compiler update to the GNU compiler as Clear Linux is planning a quick roll-out of the soon-to-be-released compiler.
For those concerned that running Clear Linux means less available packages/bundles than the likes of Debian, Arch Linux, and Fedora with their immense collection of packaged software, Clear has a goal this year of increasing their upstream components available on the distribution by three times.
Stemming from Clear Linux detailing how they optimize Python's performance using various techniques, there's been reader interest in seeing just how their Python build stacks up. Here's a look at the Clear Linux Python performance compared to a few other configurations as well as Ubuntu Linux.
Clear Linux's leading performance isn't limited to just C/C++ applications but also scripting languages like PHP, R, and Python have seen great speed-ups too. In a new blog post, one of Intel's developers outlines some of their performance tweaks to Python for delivering greater performance.
While Intel's Clear Linux is known to the most of you for its speed, it's also a distribution that is very easy to build off of for specific use-cases should you want your own pre-configured Linux OS.
Solus founder Ikey Doherty who is back working for Intel on the Clear Linux team and brought the Linux Steam Integration (LSI) into that fold has issued a new release of this software for improving the Steam integration on Linux.
As another optimization for Intel's Clear Linux distribution, a "libSuperX11" library is being considered that fundamentally changes how the X.Org libraries are handled.
For those that may have been wanting to try out Clear Linux of Intel's Open-Source Technology Center on desktops/workstation, it's now easier to do thanks to a new "desktop live" image accompanied by a new OS installer to make it more akin to conventional desktop Linux distributions.
Intel's Clear Linux distribution is making progress on their new installer, including the ability to (finally) carry out encrypted installations.
While Clear Linux augments their package/bundle archive with Flatpak support on the desktop, they are currently deciding whether to also support Snaps that are commonly associated with Ubuntu Linux.
93 Clear Linux news articles published on Phoronix.