The Linux 4.3 Kernel Is Bringing Many New Features & Improvements, But No KDBUS

Written by Michael Larabel in Software on 13 September 2015. Page 2 of 2. 5 Comments


- A big Linux scheduler change that "Potentially Affects Every SMP Workload In Existence" but so far we haven't seen any regressions yet.

- x86 boot time optimizations.

- A variety of MIPS updates.

- ARMv8.1 functionality is now supported by the Linux kernel.

With Linux 4.3, the Intel Skylake support should now be in great shape. See our Core i5 6600K Linux tests.

- Power management updates and the PowerClamp driver now supports Skylake.

- Numerous ARM SoC and platform additions.

- "Fake NUMA" for the S390.

- A few Xen updates for the Linux kernel.

- AMD Carrizo power data is now exposed by the fam15h_power kernel driver. I'm still working on getting my hands on AMD Carrizo hardware for Linux testing.

More Hardware:

- Various input driver updates.

- Wacom driver improvements.

- Intel Skylake sound support and other Linux audio improvements.

- Better Toshiba Linux laptop support.

So the highlights of Linux 4.3 really come down to basic open-source AMD Fury/Fiji support, a rework of the Nouveau driver, stabilized Intel Skylake graphics and other Linux support improvements for these latest Intel CPUs, OpenGL 3.3 for VMware VMs, the dropping of the EXT3 driver, SMP scheduler changes, continued ARMv8 / AArch64 improvements, and an assortment of other driver updates for bettering the Linux hardware support. Interestingly, KDBUS wasn't merged for Linux 4.3 even though there were previously expressed plans to do so. We haven't heard any official explanation yet why KDBUS wasn't proposed for Linux 4.3, but if we hear any other information, we'll surely write about it.

On Phoronix there's already been several articles with Linux 4.3 Git benchmarks primarily from the graphics side, but many other tests are forthcoming. There's also daily kernel benchmarks under Fedora and Ubuntu over on our performance tracker project.

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Michael Larabel

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