Ryzen, Linux 4.12 & Polaris Evolved Were Exciting This Month

Written by Michael Larabel in Phoronix on 31 May 2017 at 08:52 PM EDT. Add A Comment
It's that time again to go over what was the most interesting/viewed content on Phoronix for the month. In May, your's truly wrote 290 original news articles and 26 featured articles / Linux hardware reviews.

We are just days away from the 13th birthday of Phoronix and as such I've already been working on a number of interesting benchmark articles. But May was interesting in its own right while June should be even more interesting.

As always, a quick reminder that if you enjoy this new and original content you can always find on Phoronix seven days per week, 365 days per year, consider joining Phoronix Premium, a PayPal tip is always welcome, or at the very least please ensure you are now using any ad-blocker when viewing this site as it's the primary source of income to allow this site to continue to function, invest in new hardware components, develop our benchmarking software, and more.

First up is a look at the most viewed news of the month:

The New Features So Far For The Linux 4.12 Kernel
We are through week one of two for the Linux 4.12 kernel merge window. It's been a busy first week of 4.12, so for your viewing pleasure this weekend is a recap of some of the changes that landed over the past seven days.

Full MP3 Support Being Added To Fedora Linux
Fedora Workstation last year enabled support for MP3 decoding on this Red Hat Linux distribution while now they are enabling MP3 encoding support too.

Linux 4.12 Gained A Lot Of Weight: More Than One Million New Lines
With big merges this cycle from the DRM additions, a lot of new staging code, and more, the Linux 4.12 kernel is a bit heavier... Here's some numbers.

Intel Confirms Vulnerability In Intel AMT/ME
Many of you already have expressed your displeasure over Intel's Active Management Technology (AMT) and Management Engine (ME) for various reasons in the past and now it's been disclosed that for years there has been a vulnerability in this business-oriented feature that could open your Intel systems up to attackers.

Chrome OS Is Working To Remove The Last Of Its X11 Dependencies
Chrome OS has not been using the X.Org Server but there have been some X11/X.Org dependencies still around, which looks like they will be removed soon.

Debian GNU/Linux 8.8 Released
While waiting for the upcoming Debian 9.0 "Stretch" release, Debian 8.8 has shipped this weekend as the latest stable update.

Early Patches For Kernel Lockdown Mode Set For Linux 4.12
David Howells of Red Hat has requested Linus Torvalds pull his hardware module parameter annotation branch into the Linux 4.12 kernel. This is a needed step as part of his work on the "Kernel Lockdown" series for restricting access for allowing hardware resources be modified when in UEFI Secure Boot or other restricted mode.

RADV Radeon Driver Is Now "Effectively" A Conformant Vulkan Implementation
The open-source Radeon Vulkan driver, RADV, has now passed another important milestone.

AMD Releases Optimizing C/C++ Compiler For Ryzen
Longtime Phoronix readers and AMD Linux enthusiasts probably remember the AMD Open64 compiler for past CPU launches with various compiler optimizations for AMD processors. With Open64 being dead and all the compiler rage these days about LLVM/Clang, AMD has announced the "AMD Optimizing C/C++ Compiler" (AOCC) that's based upon Clang and optimized for Ryzen/Zen processors.

Cinnamon 3.4 Desktop Environment Tagged
Clement Lefebvre has tagged the Cinnamon 3.4.0 release ahead of the Linux Mint 18.2 "Sonya" OS update.

And the featured articles/reviews included:

Core i7 7700K vs. Ryzen 7 1800X With Ubuntu 17.04 + Linux 4.12
Given the recent BIOS improvements for Ryzen and the ever-advancing state of Linux and components like Mesa (although no recent Ryzen-specific work), here are some fresh tests of the current high-end Ryzen 7 1800X compared to an Intel Core i7 7700K on Ubuntu 17.04 with Linux 4.12 and Mesa 17.2-dev.

Radeon RX 550 Linux Benchmarks: $89 Polaris GPU On Open-Source
For those curious how AMD's sub-$100 "Polaris 12" graphics processors perform in the context of the recently-launched Radeon RX 550, here are some benchmarks of this low-end graphics card.

MSI GeForce GT 1030: A $70 Passively-Cooled Graphics Card, Decent With OpenGL/Vulkan/OpenCL/VDPAU
If you are looking for a low-profile, passively-cooled graphics card, the GeForce GT 1030 launched last week and MSI is out the door with such a capable graphics card while only costing around $70~80 USD. Here are some Linux OpenGL, Vulkan, OpenCL, and VDPAU video acceleration benchmarks of the MSI GeForce GT 1030 compared to various other Radeon and GeForce graphics cards under Ubuntu.

Benchmarking AMD's New AOCC Compiler For Ryzen
This week AMD released AOCC 1.0, the AMD Optimizing C/C++ Compiler, with initial support for Ryzen/Zen CPUs. In this article are our first benchmarks of the AOCC compiler compared to the GCC 6/7/8 and LLVM Clang 4/5 compilers.

RADV vs. AMDGPU-PRO Vulkan Performance vs. OpenGL In May 2017
With the open-source RADV Radeon Vulkan driver recently hitting the milestone of effectively being Vulkan 1.0 compliant, I figured this warranted a good time for running a fresh open-source Vulkan vs. AMDGPU-PRO Vulkan performance comparison on various graphics cards. For additional context, the RadeonSI and AMDGPU-PRO OpenGL numbers are also present to provide additional value.

Linux 4.12 I/O Scheduler Benchmarks: BFQ, Kyber, Etc
Among the many new features for Linux 4.12 are two new I/O schedulers in mainline: the long-standing BFQ (Budget Fair Queueing) and Kyber, a new I/O scheduler developed at Facebook. Here are some initial benchmarks of these I/O schedulers on the Linux Git code as of this past week.

AMDGPU-PRO 17.10 vs. Linux 4.12 + Mesa 17.2-dev Git
Given the RadeonSI/Gallium3D threaded pipe context work having landed earlier this week and there being other performance improvements with Linux 4.12 and Mesa 17.2-dev, here are some fresh benchmarks on an AMD Polaris card comparing this latest open-source graphics driver code as of this week compared to AMD's latest hybrid driver, AMDGPU-PRO 17.10.

Radeon RX 560 Linux OpenGL/Vulkan Benchmarks
Last week the "Polaris Evolved" Radeon RX 560 graphics card launched. I picked up a Sapphire Radeon RX 560 for Linux testing and have those results to share today for OpenGL and Vulkan workloads under Linux using the 4.12 development kernel and Mesa 17.2-dev compared to a range of Radeon and GeForce graphics cards.

Clear Linux Switches From Xfce To GNOME, Benchmarks
The Intel-developed high-performance Clear Linux operating system has decided to shift their desktop focus from Xfce to GNOME.

28-Way NVIDIA GeForce GPU Comparison On Ubuntu: From GeForce 8 To GeForce 1080
After finishing up the tests last week for the GeForce GT 1030 Linux review of this $70 USD passively-cooled graphics card, I ended up getting carried away running more NVIDIA Linux benchmarks and ended up making a much larger comparison -- in part for the pre-celebrations with Phoronix turning 13 next week. Here's a 28-way GeForce graphics card comparison on Ubuntu with GPUs ranging from the GeForce 8600/8800 series through the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti.
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About The Author
Michael Larabel

Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com 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 OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter, LinkedIn, or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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