Linux 6.5 Features Expected: Parallel CPU Bring-Up, Intel Shadow Stack, MIDI 2.0 & More

Written by Michael Larabel in Linux Kernel on 25 June 2023 at 09:28 AM EDT. Add A Comment
With Linux 6.4 expected for release today the Linux 6.5 merge window will then open. From my close monitoring of the many "-next" Git development branches along with some early pull requests already submitted, here is a look at some of the features that will likely be found in Linux 6.5 barring any last minute issues or objections from Linus Torvalds himself.

There's a lot in store for Linux 6.5 with many changes on the AMD and Intel hardware sides as usual, parallel CPU bring-up looks like it will finally land, UEFI unaccepted memory has also long been in the works, various hardware sensor improvements, several interesting Linux CPU scheduler enhancements, the never-ending work on open-source graphics drivers, and much more. It will be an interesting next two months for the Linux 6.5 cycle before its stable release later this summer.

Already submitted via early merge requests for Linux 6.5 include some notable items:

- Better NUMA awareness for the NFSD/RDMA server code.

- Upgrading the Rust toolchain and continuing to add more bits to allow Rust kernel development.

Other material expected for Linux 6.5 based on Git "-next" activity includes:

- Improved handling of Hyper Threading with Intel hybrid CPUs for better task placement.

- Intel Variable Rate Refresh (VRR) for eDP panels.

- A patch confirming Intel Meteor Lake's L4 cache.

- Scheduler improvements for AMD systems with multiple LLCs per die.

- A second attempt at the Intel Shadow Stack support.

- MIDI 2.0 support.

- Parallel CPU bring-up support for x86_64 processors to shorten the boot time.

- New HDMI features for the Raspberry Pi / Broadcom VC4 driver.

- Rumble support for newer Microsoft Xbox gaming controllers.

- A NVIDIA SHIELD controller driver is finally making it to the kernel, contributed by NVIDIA.

- HuC loading support for Intel Meteor Lake as needed for H.265 accelerated encoding/decoding and other functionality.

- Improved power management for the AMD graphics driver.

- FreeSync Video support by default in AMDGPU.

- Intel Habana Labs Gaudi 2 support is deemed stable.

- VirtIO GPU DRM support for the sync object user-space API for use with Vulkan.

- Support for newer AMD Crypto Co-Processor hardware (CCP).

- Improved sensor reporting for HP business-class systems.

- AMD Heterogeneous System patches.

- Updated Corsair HWMON power supply driver for supporting the latest generation Corsair power supplies.

- Sound quirks for the ASUS ROG Ally gaming handheld computer.

- Provisioning primitives for thinly provisioned storage.

- Qualcomm Adreno 690 open-source DRM driver support for that GPU found within the Lenovo ThinkPad X13s and other Arm devices.

- XFS large extents is no longer experimental after being in the kernel the past year.

- IBM POWER DEXCR support.

- Async buffered write support for F2FS.

- NCT6799D sensor support for that Super I/O controller found in various newer desktop motherboards.

- A virtual PCM test driver to help with Linux audio fuzzing and testing.

- RISC-V Vector ISA support.

- UEFI unaccepted memory support for Intel and AMD server processors with encrypted guest VM memory.

- New activity around the 1-wire "1W" subsystem.

- Greater throughput and lower latency for the Linux checksum function.

- AMD EDAC support for the Ryzen 7000 series desktop processors.

- Deprecating the SLAB allocator.

- Faster resume time with a USB XHCI driver change.

- TPMI and cluster-level power controls for the Intel uncore driver.

Stay tuned to Phoronix for more details on the Linux 6.5 merge window over the next two weeks followed by benchmarks beginning for the Linux 6.5 kernel. Linux 6.5 is hopefully what will be powering the likes of Ubuntu 23.10 this autumn.
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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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