Some FreeBSD Users Are Still Running Into Random Lock-Ups With Ryzen

Written by Michael Larabel in BSD on 21 January 2018 at 12:16 PM EST. 60 Comments
BSD --
While Linux has been playing happily with Ryzen CPUs as long as you weren't affected by the performance marginality problem where you had to swap out for a newer CPU (and Threadripper and EPYC CPUs have been running splendid in all of my testing with not having any worries), it seems the BSDs (at least FreeBSD) are still having some quirks to address.

This week on the FreeBSD mailing list has been another thread about Ryzen issues on FreeBSD. Some users are still encountering random lockups that do not correspond to any apparent load/activity on the system.

Some have reported an AMD shared page change in FreeBSD 12-CURRENT / 11-STABLE improves the situation. (Users can see if they have the change via the hw.lower_amd64_sharedpage sysctl.) But those still encountering stability issues even with BIOS updates and carrying out other basic checks have not a very reproducible means of checking their system's Ryzen stability. Some have reported being able to cause a lock-up after running the FreeBSD build world process for some time while others claim their system(s) will lock-up simply when idling.

In my testing of Ryzen/Threadripper/EPYC on FreeBSD (and FreeBSD-based TrueOS) as well as DragonFlyBSD, I haven't encountered any CPU stability problems. I've only encountered compatibility issues when for example trying to install BSDs to the Intel 900p Optane SSD where it wasn't detected or other gotchas. This weekend I've been running some more phoronix-test-suite stress-run processes on two Ryzen boxes and have yet to generate any lock-ups. I did point out this FreeBSD mailing list thread to an AMD press contact a few days ago, but haven't seen any comment from them. For those encountering Ryzen stability issues, I'll repeat the same recommendations of checking for BIOS updates, tweaking memory settings, ensuring sufficient cooling, etc.

So just passing along this thread for any potential AMD BSD users to follow. If I hear anything more, I'll certainly write about it on Phoronix.
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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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