Open-Source GPU Driver Updates Sent In For Linux 5.9 From Sienna Cichlid To Rocket Lake

Written by Michael Larabel in Linux Kernel on 6 August 2020 at 03:31 PM EDT. 2 Comments
The Direct Rendering Manager (DRM) driver updates were sent in today for the Linux 5.9 kernel merge window. There are some big additions particularly with AMD Sienna Cichlid and Navy Flounder landing as Navi 2 parts but also a lot of other changes in tow.

There is a fair amount of new hardware enablement on the graphics/display side with Linux 5.9:

- Initial support for Navi 2 Sienna Cichlid and Navy Flounder Radeon GPUs. These Navi 2 parts are expected to be announced later this year while the kernel patches don't reveal many juicy details. Besides needing Linux 5.9+, you will also need at least Mesa 20.2 and LLVM 11.0 for this open-source driver support.

- On the Intel side there is graphics support for next-gen Rocket Lake. With Rocket Lake being based on Gen12/Xe Graphics, the changes aren't all that much, but it's there and ready to go ahead of Intel's expected launch of Rocket Lake in 2021.

- Intel also has early enablement work on their DG1 discrete graphics card. DG1 is also based on Gen12/Xe and this discrete GPU support is still maturing but the early pieces are in Linux 5.9.

- The Xilinx ZynqMP DisplayPort driver has finally been merged... Patches for that had been floating around since 2018. This driver provides DisplayPort functionality for the IP running in programmable FPGA fabric.

Among the other open-source graphics/display feature changes for Linux 5.9 include:

- GCN 1.0 "Southern Islands" hardware opting to use the AMDGPU kernel driver now have working UVD video decode support.

- AMDGPU also now supports run-time power management for Vega 10 hardware supporting BACO (Bus Active, Chip Off).

- On the open-source NVIDIA (Nouveau) side there is CRC support written using NVIDIA's published documentation. But aside from that the other Nouveau activity is just preparing for future changes.

- The Qualcomm MSM DRM driver continues bringing up Adreno 640 / Adreno 650 support.

- Exposure of VRR/Adaptive-Sync information via DebugFS.

- Various improvements to DRM core as well as TTM memory management. The various smaller DRM drivers have also seen work like frame-buffer compression for the Meson driver and IOMMU support for the Allwinner Sun4i driver.

The full list of DRM feature patches for the Linux 5.9 merge window can be found via the pull request sent in by Red Hat's David Airlie.
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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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