Intel Prepares Linux Driver For Next-Gen VPU With Lunar Lake

Written by Michael Larabel in Intel on 31 July 2023 at 01:28 PM EDT. 3 Comments
With the upcoming Intel Meteor Lake processors is the introduction of the Versatile Processing Unit "VPU" IP block for computer vision and deep learning use-cases to provide better performance. Earlier this year with Linux 6.3 the iVPU driver was merged. Meteor Lake processors haven't even officially launched yet while already Intel's open-source engineers have begun enabling the next-gen VPU to be found with Lunar Lake processors.

Sent out today were the initial code patches in preparing support for the "VPU IP 4" unit to be found with Intel Lunar Lake processors.

The iVPU accelerator driver changes include refactoring to distinguish that the VPU IP generation isn't necessarily tied to one particular platform but could be used by multiple platforms. There is also refactoring around the memory ranges code.

The initial Intel VPU 4 enablement code indicates that the register set is different from VPU 3 and there are changes to initializing of this hardware block as well as handling around MMU memory ranges.

There is this patch series providing the initial driver refactoring and preparations around Lunar Lake's VPU IP 4.

It will be interesting to see how well the VPU performs for CV and AI/DL purposes with upcoming Meteor Lake hardware while already for following that we can look forward to VPU 4 with Lunar Lake while before then is still Arrow Lake that appears to be using VPU IP 3 like Meteor Lake given we haven't seen any driver differences for that generation.

Quite exciting with Meteor Lake is that the VPU will be found with all SKUs. Hopefully that remains the case for Arrow Lake and then Lunar Lake with this new VPU.
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