Intel IFS Ready To Weed Out Faulty Silicon With Linux 6.2
In-Field Scan is a feature disclosed at the start of this year by a new Linux kernel driver and is a feature coming with Intel's next-generation server processors for an easy silicon testing feature for running tests and uncovering any potential silicon-level issues not caught by ECC, parity checks, RAS, or other existing functionality. Particularly for hyperscalers and other large server CPU deployments this IFS can be useful for finding any CPU hardware troubles prior to commissioning new servers or age the silicon ages within the data center.
The Intel IFS code was added to Linux 5.19 but was marked "broken" prior to release after Intel engineers realized there were some defects in their planned interface around the loading of multiple tests. Due to the Linux requirements around not breaking user-space interfaces, it was marked as broken to allow the Intel engineers time to improve their driver around the area of loading of multiple test cases for IFS.
Intel engineers worked out the kinks from the original code and now consider it to be stable for helping to test processor silicon in the field.
This code for handling of running multiple different test patterns in the Intel IFS driver and reverting the "BROKEN" tag was submitted and merged this week for the mainline Linux 6.2 kernel. Straightening up of the Intel In-Field Scan driver came with this pull and is now ready for helping to vet silicon with upcoming Xeon Scalable Sapphire Rapids processors.