Char/Misc Is Still Quite Busy With Linux 5.9 Still Lacking An "Accelerator" Subsystem

Written by Michael Larabel in Linux Kernel on 8 August 2020 at 12:02 AM EDT. Add A Comment
The "char/misc" area of the kernel continues to be quite busy for Linux 5.9 included as a sort of "catch-all" for the Linux kernel drivers not properly jiving within other areas. While there previously was talk of formally making a hardware accelerator subsystem for the Linux kernel for fitting some of the drivers currently living under char/misc, as of Linux 5.9 that still has not materialized.

With more AI driver work for mainline and new accelerator devices coming to market, the "accelerator" subsystem will surely come in due course but for now the likes of the Habana Labs driver live under the char/misc umbrella.

As far as the changes that have landed for Linux 5.9 under char/misc, the highlights include:

- Continued work on Intel / Habana Labs' Gaudi accelerator following its initial introduction in Linux 5.8. Habana Labs' Gaudi is intended for AI training and complements the existing open-source Goya AI inference offering.

- UFS PHY driver for Samsung SoCs.

- Qualcomm IPQ806x DWC USB PHY driver.

- PHY driver for Xilinx ZynqMP Gigabit Transceiver.

- A variety of different SoundWire updates.

The full list of char/misc changes via this pull request via Greg Kroah-Hartman.
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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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