Linux 5.10 Brings Many Changes From Better CPU Support To File-System Optimizations

Written by Michael Larabel in Software on 25 October 2020. Page 1 of 2. Add A Comment

The Linux 5.10 merge window is set to close this afternoon followed by around seven weeks worth of release candidates before the stable kernel release in December. As usual here is our look at the many new features set to premiere with this next version of the Linux kernel.

With Linux 5.10 there is a lot of work on file-system optimizations and other storage improvements, various additions for AMD Zen 3 processors, continued open-source driver work for Big Navi / Radeon RX 6000 series, mainline support for the Purism Librem 5 smartphone revisions thus far, the Creative SoundBlaster AE-7 support finally being supported under Linux, XFS has shifted its timestamp support from breaking after Year 2038 to now working up to Year 2486, Nintendo Switch controller support, and other new hardware support and other work.

The rest of the article is the more exhaustive look at the Linux 5.10 features we've been tracking thus far. Linux 5.10 benchmarks coming up soon on Phoronix.


- Continued bring-up for Intel Rocket Lake as well as early work around Alder Lake. There is also early work around Meteor Lake.

- Ingenic MIPS X2000/X2000E IoT processor support.

- PowerPC 601 support was retired as the original 32-bit PowerPC processor. Meanwhile IBM continues bringing up POWER10 support in the Linux kernel.

- SLDT / STR emulation with UMIP for helping some Windows games running on Linux under Wine no longer running into problems.

- A fix for AMD Zen 3 CPU frequency handling that stems from a workaround in 2012 for overriding the ACPI _PSD table on AMD processors.

- Perf support for AMD Zen 3 along with other Linux perf additions.

- AMD Zen 3 temperature sensor support.

- AMD Zen 3 EDAC support.

- Initial support for NVIDIA Orin.

- Much faster mremap performance on ARM64 hardware.

- Initial RISC-V booting via EFI.

- KVM picked up the new TDP MMU that can especially help with very large VMs.

- Xen fixes ARM guest support when operating with KPTI (Kernel Page Table Isolation) for mitigating Meltdown.

- AMD SEV-ES support for Secure Encrypted Virtualization "Encrypted State" (ES) for better securing virtual machines.

- AMD Secure Nested Paging IOMMU in preparation for SEV-SNP support.

- AMD SME hardware-enforced cache coherency.

- Zhaoxin 7-Series Centaur support.

- initial usage of the Intel SERIALIZE instruction.

- The Arm Memory Tagging Extension and Pointer Authentication are working to better protect the system with new ARM64 SoCs.

- A rewrite of ARM's Spectre mitigations with the "Ghostbusters" rework.

- SMT balancing tweaks in the scheduler.

- Various other Intel/AMD processor changes.


- Tiger Lake HOBL support for helping to extend the battery life.

- Continued work on the Gen12 support within Intel Rocket Lake.

- Continued work on the AMD RDNA 2 / Radeon RX 6000 series support initially introduced in Linux 5.9.

- AMDGPU DC display support for GCN 1.0 (Southern Islands) GPUs.

- Raspberry Pi VC4 support.

- Matrox G200 desktop graphics card support in the Matrox DRM driver.

- A fix for poor power management with AMD laptops having Radoen discrete graphics.

- Numerous other open-source DRM updates.

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