Pensando Sends Out Latest Linux Patches For Bringing Up Their Elba DPU SoC

Written by Michael Larabel in Hardware on 7 April 2022 at 03:27 PM EDT. 5 Comments
Earlier this week was the news of AMD acquiring Pensando in a $1.9B deal expected to close in Q2. The acquisition announcement isn't slowing down their efforts with today bringing the latest version of their Linux kernel patches for bringing up the Elba SoC.

Pensando's Elba SoC is a data processing unit (DPU) initially focused at least on smart network switches. Pensando's Elba has been known for two years now and the successor to their earlier Capri DPU. The Aruba CX 10000 announced last year is one of the switches so far making use of the Pensando Elba. The Elba chip features:
- Sixteen ARM64 A72 cores
- Dual DDR 4/5 memory controllers
- 32 lanes of PCIe Gen3/4 to the Host
- Network interfaces: Dual 200GE, Quad 100GE, 50GE, 25GE, 10GE and also a single 1GE management port.
- Storage/crypto offloads and 144 programmable P4 cores.
- QSPI and EMMC for SoC storage
- Two SPI interfaces for peripheral management
- I2C bus for platform management

As is important for most enterprise network hardware these days, Pensando has been working on mainline Linux support for their SoC.

The Aruba CX 10000 series switch powered by the Pensando Elba SoC.

This patch series has the latest DeviceTree bindings and other changes for bringing up the Elba SoC on a mainline kernel. If all goes well we could see this enablement potentially buttoned up for the v5.19 kernel. Great to see this support going mainline for this networking startup and their upstream kernel contributions should certainly continue -- and ideally become even more robust -- under the AMD umbrella as part of their overall data center expansion.
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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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