Linux 4.5 DRM Pull Has Initial Kabylake Support, Open-Source Vivante 3D

Written by Michael Larabel in Linux Kernel on 17 January 2016 at 04:48 PM EST. Add A Comment
David Airlie sent in the Direct Rendering Manager (DRM) driver updates today for targeting the Linux 4.5 kernel merge window.

As usual, the DRM updates for this next Linux kernel release are quite exciting.

There's a new DRM driver with Linux 4.5 and that's the long talked about Etnaviv DRM driver. This open-source, reverse-engineered driver is for the Vinvante GPUs. Work continues meanwhile in Mesa on providing an Etnaviv OpenGL driver.

The Intel DRM driver updates for Linux 4.5 include basic Kabylake support (the next-gen successor to Skylake), DisplayPort fixes, frame-buffer compression and panel self refresh fixes, GPU-side work on MST audio support, and various code clean-ups and other improvements.

The AMD driver changes to Radeon and AMDGPU include dropping user-space mode-setting support since it's been deprecated for a while in Radeon and UMS hasn't even been supported for several hardware generations now. There are also GPU VM scheduler optimizations, initial PowerPlay support in AMDGPU, and other work. Once again, the AMDGPU/Radeon updates are quite exciting and the PowerPlay support is crucial for better AMDGPU driver performance, but unfortunately the PP support is disabled by default in Linux 4.5.

The Nouveau driver for open-source NVIDIA support has PCI-E link speed change support and other basic work. Sadly, no GeForce GTX 900 hardware acceleration yet. I'll be running some fresh Nouveau tests shortly to see if the PCI-E link speed changing helps much or if the performance is still crippled due to incomplete re-clocking.

Other highlights of the Linux 4.5 DRM updates include 3D acceleration bits for the VC4 DRM driver as used by the Raspberry Pi, Atomic mode-setting for the OMAP / Rockchip TDA998X drivers, RK3036 VOP support in the Rockchip driver, runtime power management in the Exynos DRM driver, and a variety of fixes throughout.

The complete list of the individual DRM changes for the Linux 4.5 merge window can be found via the pull request.
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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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