Intel Unveils New "KMB" DRM Driver For Their New SoC With An ARM CPU + Movidius VPU

Written by Michael Larabel in Intel on 30 June 2020 at 05:46 PM EDT. 3 Comments
Intel has introduced a new Direct Rendering Manager (DRM) kernel driver for Linux.

This new "KMB" DRM driver is initially just for their Keem Bay SoC platform. Keem Bay is the codename for their next-gen computer vision offering for inference edge computing with Movidius VPU. Keem Bay details have been light since the initial announcement at the AI Summit last November.

We haven't heard much about Intel's Keem Bay this year even though it was supposed to be shipping in H1. There has been the Linux bring-up in recent months and other bring-up work. Now though as we end out H1, Intel's open-source developers are posting this new KMB DRM driver for Keem Bay.

The work confirms Intel's Keem Bay SoC is pairing an Arm Cortex A53 CPU setup with an Intel Movidius VPU. Yes, just a low-power, low-performance CPU with all of the magic intended to happen off the VPU. This DRM driver provides basic KMS atomic mode-setting support that can be used for driving a LCD or MIPI DSI setup or connected to an HDMI converter. Keem Bay has no 2D/3D graphics with this DRM driver just being for display purposes.

The patch series amounts to just over five thousand lines of code for this DRM display driver for Keem Bay. The mainline Linux kernel does not yet support the Keem Bay reference platform so there is still more work to do before Keem Bay and its reference board can be running gracefully on the mainline, open-source kernel tree. We'll see if this work can get reviewed and tidied up in time for the Linux 5.9 cycle in August.
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