New Patches Posted For Bringing Up The Apple M1 SoC On Linux

Written by Michael Larabel in Apple on 4 February 2021 at 04:39 PM EST. 19 Comments
Security firm Corellium has been working on enabling the Apple M1 SoC under Linux and last month they posted initial Linux kernel patches for the Apple M1. Meanwhile independent developer Hector Martin has also been working on Apple M1 enablement via crowdfunding and today he posted his initial set of Linux kernel patches for bringing up the Apple 2020 hardware under Linux.

Hector Martin today posted a set of 18 patches as part of his initial bring-up work for the Apple M1 SoC with a focus on the 2020 Apple Mac Mini, MacBook Pro, and MacBook Air models that use this Apple Silicon. This initial work focuses on UART, interrupts, SMP, and DeviceTree support. There is also a SimpleFB-based frame-buffer implementation for a working albeit un-accelerated display. The DeviceTree is focused on the Apple Mac Mini 2020 model but should be working for the most part with the MacBook Air and MacBook Pro too.

In addition to the kernel work, there is also work underway on "m1n1" as a new bootloader to deal with Apple's peculair boot protocol and DeviceTree format.

The initial 18 patches from Hector for getting the Apple M1 booting can be found on the kernel mailing list.

There is still a lot of work ahead especially if wanting working GPU acceleration but progress is being made for those wanting to run Linux gracefully down the road on Apple M1 / Apple Silicon hardware.
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