Experimental Nouveau Reclocking Patches Updated, Including For Maxwell GPUs

Written by Michael Larabel in Nouveau on 16 September 2017 at 11:03 AM EDT. 24 Comments
Karol Herbst has sent out 29 updated patches on Friday for a major rework to the Nouveau clock related code for re-clocking and related functionality. This includes a "hacky workaround" for getting re-clocking to function on GeForce GTX 900 "Maxwell 2" GPUs.

The 29 patches by this independent Nouveau contributor work on restoring clocks after a system suspend, fixed reclocking when entering suspend, initial support for thermal throttling and to trigger reclocking on temperature changes, the "hacky workaround" for Maxwell2 reclocking, a new debugfs file for changing the boost mode, and other related work.

The Maxwell2 re-clocking is only available with the nouveau.NvFanless=true module option. As well, this really only works out well if you are having a Maxwell2 GPU in a laptop or your graphics card is fanless. NVIDIA has not provided the needed signed PMU firmware so Nouveau developers can adjust the fan speed on these newer graphics cards. Without being able to ramp up the fans, re-clocking is unsafe as you could overheat your graphics card. So only try this re-clocking if you are using a laptop where the fan is controlled by the system, you are on a passively-cooled setup, or you have sufficient cooling via other means (e.g. water cooling).

The boost clock information can now be accessed via a new boost file on debugfs.

The 29 patches for now can be found on Nouveau. Though don't expect all of the work to be mainlined in the Linux kernel soon as it's still rather experimental. Karol wrote on the patch series introduction, "It would be also nice if we agree on features I should focus upstreaming, so that this work can be better splitted or reordered. Sadly most of my patches depend on the rather big clk subdev rework and I think those patches shows best, why I think this rework is actually needed and makes
things much easier to add later on.
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