The Big Changes Merged This Week For The Linux 4.17 Kernel

Written by Michael Larabel in Linux Kernel on 8 April 2018 at 07:30 AM EDT. 14 Comments
We are now through the first week of the two week long Linux 4.17 kernel merge window process for introducing the new features/functionality to this next big kernel release.

While the Linux 4.17 kernel will not debut as stable until around the middle of June, here is a look at the functionality merged so far that you will be able to find in this next big kernel update:

- A huge DRM subsystem update with AMDGPU DC by default for all capable GPUs, Intel Cannonlake graphics are stable, AMD WattMan, Intel HDCP, and more.

- Initial NVIDIA Tegra "Xavier" SoC support for this new high-performance ARM chip with Volta graphics.

- Eight obsolete CPU architectures were removed resulting in a code savings of about a half million lines.

- POWER4 CPU support is being dropped too as part of a separate pull. The POWER4 support was already broken since 2016 with no one apparently noticing until now.

- IBM s390 is still working on its Spectre defense.

- Continued maturing of the RISC-V architecture code.

- A new CPU architecture port for Linux 4.17 is the Andes NDS32 architecture.

- The Linux Kernel Memory Consistency Model has been formalized for Linux 4.17.

- Fixes for the Macintosh PowerBook 100 series.. Yes, with the Motorola processors from the early 90's.

- The new ACPI TAD driver for some interesting wake-up/alarm functionality as well as other CPUFreq and power management updates.

- PhoenixRC flight controller support.

- Multi-touch support for the Razer Blade Stealth.

- Thunderbolt USB/SL4 security level support.

- USB Type-C support improvements.

- Lost and Found support for F2FS along with performance enhancements and other work.

- EXT4 gets protection for maliciously crafted container images.

- Lazy time support for XFS.

- Btrfs gets a no SSD spread option and other improvements.

- New sound drivers plus USB Audio Class 3.0 support.

- Linux 4.17 staging has shed some weight (lots of lines of code).

- Various other PCI, crypto, and more updates as well as SPARC and BMC updates.

Stay tuned for more merges over the week ahead followed by our usual benchmarking dance.
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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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