Linus Torvalds Switches To AMD Ryzen Threadripper After 15 Years Of Intel Systems

Written by Michael Larabel in AMD on 24 May 2020 at 08:01 PM EDT. 205 Comments
An interesting anecdote shared in today's Linux 5.7-rc7 announcement is word that Linux and Git creator Linus Torvalds switched his main rig over to an AMD Ryzen Threadripper.

At least for what he has said in the past, Linus has long been using Intel boxes given his close relationship with the company (and even close proximity to many of the Intel Portland open-source crew). In fact, he commented this is the first time in about fifteen years not using an Intel system as his primary machine. He made this interesting remark in the RC7 announcement:
In fact, the biggest excitement this week for me was just that I upgraded my main machine, and for the first time in about 15 years, my desktop isn't Intel-based. No, I didn't switch to ARM yet, but I'm now rocking an AMD Threadripper 3970x. My 'allmodconfig' test builds are now three times faster than they used to be, which doesn't matter so much right now during the calming down period, but I will most definitely notice the upgrade during the next merge window.

The Threadripper 3970X and the rest of the 3900 series line-up are incredibly great options for kernel developers and those frequently compiling large code-bases. He didn't mention the CPU in his prior Intel box, but he is seeing 3x faster builds.

With the upcoming Linux 5.8 merge window in early June, his Threadripper system is sure to have a great workout.

This in turn is actually good news as well for AMD Ryzen Linux users: as Torvalds is constantly building the latest kernel code for mainline, he tends to shout quite publicly and loudly when any code breaks on his systems stemming from botched/poorly-tested pull requests... Thus with the extra and immediate exposure on Threadripper, he will hopefully be spotting any kernel-breaking regressions more quickly and who knows whatever other improvements he may be able to wrangle up as he's burning in his new system.
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