The Linux Kernel Starts Prepping For Intel Ice Lake NNPI Support

Written by Michael Larabel in Intel on 12 June 2019 at 09:05 AM EDT. Add A Comment
Back during CES, Intel announced the Nervana Neural Network Processor for Inference (NNPI) to be powered by 10nm Ice Lake cores. Now ahead of the Linux 5.3 kernel cycle we're seeing the very first signs of the Ice Lake NNPI upbringing for the kernel.

The Nervana NNPI is designed to deliver high performance inference for edge computing workloads and other segments. Intel said back at the Consumer Electronics Show that the NNPI products should be ready in H2'2019, but given the slow introduction of Ice Lake processors, it may still be a while before we see this Nervana hardware. But now at least we're seeing the first signs of the Linux kernel support. This also seems to further point to the products being months away before introduction considering the Linux 5.3 kernel won't even debut as stable until September and Intel normally tries to ensure at-launch support for their products, especially when it comes to AI/HPC markets that predominantly utilize Linux.

So far queued is adding the new CPU ID model number for the Ice Lake Neural Network Processor. The patch notes that the Ice Lake NNPI uses model number 0x9D for identifying the new hardware. Expect more kernel patches soon.
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Michael Larabel is the principal author of and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 20,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter, LinkedIn, or contacted via

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