Linux 5.2 Will Be A Huge Release: EXT4 Case Insensitive, NVIDIA AltMode, Fieldbus + More

Written by Michael Larabel in Linux Kernel on 29 April 2019 at 01:00 PM EDT. 20 Comments
Assuming Linux 5.1 manages to ship next weekend, the Linux 5.2 merge window will immediately kick off following that release. In our close monitoring of the different development branches in recent weeks, the Linux 5.2 kernel is shaping up to be an outright massive release.

Among the features we've been tracking that are slated to land with Linux 5.2 includes:

- EXT4 case-insensitive filenames/folders support is optionally supported on a per-directory basis.

- The Panfrost DRM driver is being added to provide a DRM/KMS driver for Arm Mali Bifrost/Midgard hardware. This goes along with the new Mesa 19.1 Gallium3D Panfrost driver providing the OpenGL support.

- Meanwhile for older Mali hardware, the Lima DRM/KMS driver is being added for 400/450 series hardware.

- Another new DRM driver for Linux 5.2 is the ASpeed AST2500 SoC driver.

- A Generic Counter interface/subsystem is being introduced.

- The NVIDIA AltMode driver is being merged for enabling VirtualLink device support with the new RTX/Turing graphics cards.

- Improved Logitech wireless keyboard/mouse support.

- Continued Intel Icelake work to the point that the Gen11 graphics are no longer considered experimental.

- Also new on the Intel graphics front will be the Intel Elkhart Lake support.

- MOTU 8Pre DAW hardware support on the sound side.

- The Daktronics drivers are being mainlined after being out-of-tree going back to the Linux 2.x kernel era.

- The Fieldbus subsystem is being added for helping with real-time distributed control of automated industrial systems.

- Better Thunderbolt support for older Apple hardware with now handling PCIe daisy chains, DisplayPort tunneling, P2P networking, etc.

- Zap shader support for Qualcomm Adreno 600 series graphics hardware with the MSM DRM driver.

- AMDGPU FreeSync improvements.

- U2F Zero driver is being added as this USB device for two factor authentication and hardware RNG.

- Dynamic Device Personalization for the Intel i40e network driver.

- An x86/mm optimization to help with unnecessary cache line movements and TLB misses for enhancing the performance.

- Linux 5.2 will support GCC 9's live-patching option.

- A null TTY driver is being merged to help in cases where no TTY driver is available.

Those are just the changes that have been on my radar while there is a lot more for sure coming with Linux 5.2. Stay tuned for our monitoring of the Linux 5.2 activity over the forthcoming merge window followed by the subsequent kernel benchmarks. Enjoy our daily articles and benchmarking with original reports? Consider showing your support by going premium.
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Michael Larabel

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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