There Is Another Attempt At Allowing Zstd-Compressed Firmware For The Linux Kernel
In August of last year was a prior attempt for allowing Linux firmware to be Zstd compressed thanks to its faster decompression speeds of Zstd and thus allowing quicker boot times. Zstd firmware decompression was found to be much quicker than the likes of XZ.
That prior work never ended up being followed through to mainline while now SUSE engineer and Linux sound subsystem maintainer Takashi Iwai has written a set of new patches for allowing Zstd-compressed firmware loader support and makes use of the kernel's existing Zstd interface.
For now though the patches have been sent out as an RFC patch series (Request For Comments) while waiting to see if upstream and distribution vendors have enough interest in Zstd-compressed firmware files for allowing faster boot times while at least providing some level of compression for the increasingly relied upon firmware files.
We'll see what happens with the Zstd firmware compression concept this go around.