Linux Changes Pipe Behavior After Breaking Problematic Android Apps On Recent Kernels

At the end of 2019 a rework to the Linux kernel's pipe code saw some of its logic reworked to only wake up readers if needed and avoid a possible thundering herd problem. But it turns out some Android libraries abused the functionality and this has led to broken Android applications when moving to recent kernels. While the user-space software is in the wrong, the kernel is sticking to its policy of not breaking user-space and as such Linus Torvalds has changed the code's behavior for Linux 5.14 and to be back-ported to prior stable kernels.

6 Hours Ago - Linux Kernel - Pipe - 21 Comments
The New NTFS Driver Looks Like It Will Finally Be Ready With Linux 5.15

It's looking like the new NTFS file-system kernel driver developed by Paragon Software and over the past year revised more than two dozen times could be ready for mainlining in the kernel in about one month's time when the Linux 5.15 merge window opens. Everything is finally aligning and looking like the code is in good enough shape for its initial merging though not necessarily replacing the existing NTFS driver at this point.

8 Hours Ago - Linux Kernel - NTFS3 + Linux 5.15 - 25 Comments

30 July

Linspire-Based Freespire Announces "Entirely New Direction" With Cloud Apps...

What started off as Lindows twenty years ago as an easy-to-use Linux-based operating system with great Wine integration and easy application support but then changed to Linspire following a Microsoft lawsuit has had quite a journey. PC/OpenSystems LLC revived Linspire after a multi-year gap following the closure of Xandros and since then it's been a rather peculiar platform. Today they are now shifting focus once again.

30 July 08:50 PM EDT - Operating Systems - Freespire 7.7 - 11 Comments
OpenGL Drivers In 2021 Still Sadly Benefit From Faking Their Driver Name / GPU

Years ago particularly when the open-source Linux GPU drivers were in their infancy it was known in some cases having to fake/spoof the GPU driver name or model in order to workaround artificial bugs / problematic code paths targeted to a particular OpenGL driver or even to achieve greater performance. With a new Mesa merge request called "Unleash the dragon!", this is still very much a problem in 2021 even now in the Android space.

30 July 07:00 AM EDT - Mesa - Faking It - 25 Comments
AMD Releases AOMP 13.0-5 Radeon OpenMP Compiler

In addition to the AOCC compiler for Zen CPUs, another LLVM/Clang downstream maintained by AMD is the AOMP compiler as where they host their various patches not yet merged around Radeon OpenMP offloading support. This week marked the release of AOMP 13.0-5 as their latest work on that front for the newest OpenMP GPU offloading capabilities.

30 July 05:49 AM EDT - Radeon - AOMP 13.0-5 - Add A Comment

29 July

AMD Radeon RX 6600 XT Launching For 1080p RDNA2 Gaming At ~$379 USD

AMD just lifted the embargo on the Radeon RX 6600 XT, its newest entry in their RDNA2 line-up and optimized for delivering a superior 1080p gaming performance against the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 series. The RX 6600 XT isn't hitting retail availability until August and that is when we'll be able to publish benchmarks, but for now here is an overview of this new graphics card launching at the $379 price point.

29 July 11:30 PM EDT - Graphics Cards - 58 Comments
Paragon's NTFS Driver For The Linux Kernel Spun Up A 27th Time

Those having to deal with data stored on NTFS partitions from Linux have been eagerly awaiting the "NTFS3" kernel driver that Paragon Software has been working now for a year to upstream into the Linux kernel. No pull request has been sent in yet but the twenty-seventh spin of this driver was published today.

29 July 01:30 PM EDT - Linux Storage - NTFS3 - 30 Comments
AOCC 3.1 Compiler Performance Against Clang 12, GCC 11 On AMD EPYC

Following the recent benchmarks seeing how AMD's new AOCC 3.1 compiler has brought some performance improvements over the prior AOCC 3.0 release that introduced initial Zen 3 optimizations, here are some benchmarks looking at how that latest AMD Optimizing C/C++ Compiler performance compares to the upstream LLVM Clang 12 compiler for which it is based as well as against GCC 11 as the latest GNU compiler release that remains common to Linux systems.

29 July 08:50 AM EDT - Software - 4 Comments
Systemd/Microsoft Effort For A Global Counter On Block/Disk Changes Coming To Linux 5.15

Last month I wrote about a possible global counter for block/disk changes on Linux being discussed by Microsoft and systemd developers to better track changes via a system-wide monotonically increasing number as an alternative to the existing per-disk tracking. That functionality is now queued up as part of the block subsystem changes ahead of the Linux 5.15 merge window in a few weeks.

29 July 03:00 AM EDT - Linux Storage - Disk Sequence Number - 25 Comments

28 July

Intel's Iris Gallium3D OpenGL Driver Now Supports Threaded Shader Compilation

Intel's open-source "Iris" Gallium3D driver for providing modern OpenGL driver support on their graphics hardware from Broadwell through all current Gen12 / Xe Graphics era hardware has been in great shape for some time and works wonderfully. But Intel's not done furthering this Linux OpenGL driver and today they now have threaded shader compilation merged.

28 July 04:00 PM EDT - Intel - Threaded Shader Compiles - 2 Comments
"Beyond Stupid" Paranoid L1d Cache Flushing Looks Like It Will Try Again For Linux 5.15

The work going on for over a year to optionally flush the L1 data cache on context switching is going to try again for the next kernel cycle as an opt-in feature for select tasks. This was the feature rejected last year by Linus Torvalds that went on to "beyond stupid" and other concerns about it when it was trying to be mainlined originally.

28 July 09:30 AM EDT - Linux Security - "BEYOND STUPID" - 18 Comments
Ubuntu 21.04 vs. Windows 10 Trade Blows On The AMD Ryzen 9 5900HX / ASUS ROG Strix G15

While the AMD Ryzen 9 5900HX performance is great on Linux once overcoming any laptop support quirks like with the ASUS ROG Strix G15 "AMD Advantage" laptop running into keyboard and WiFi issues on Linux depending upon the kernel version, how does the performance compare to Microsoft Windows 10? Here are some benchmarks of that ROG Strix G15 AMD laptop under Windows 10 as shipped by ASUS against Ubuntu 21.04 when upgraded to the Linux 5.13 stable kernel.

28 July 08:00 AM EDT - Operating Systems - 35 Comments

27 July

RADV Ray-Tracing Now Rendering Quake II RTX Correctly But Very Slowly

The open-source Mesa RADV driver for independent Radeon Vulkan driver support on Linux has been working towards supporting ray-tracing for months. Progress is being made with the latest being more test cases passes and even the Quake II RTX game rendering correctly, but the performance is far short of being satisfactory yet.

27 July 06:00 PM EDT - Radeon - RADV Vulkan Ray-Tracing - 47 Comments
Micron Working On NVMe SSD Abrupt Shutdown Support For Linux

The NVMe specification provides for an abrupt shutdown mode over the normal/safe shutdown command if needing to quickly get the NVMe solid-state storage ready for powering off as quickly as possible. Currently the Linux kernel isn't making use of the NVMe abrupt shutdown command but a proposal by Micron is looking to begin its usage.

27 July 08:58 AM EDT - Linux Storage - NVMe Abrupt Shutdown - 18 Comments
AMD AOCC 3.1 Compiler Performance On EPYC 7003 / Zen 3

Last week AMD released their AOCC 3.1 compiler that is their downstream of LLVM Clang/Flang and carrying various yet-to-be-upstreamed patches for benefiting their latest processors. While just a point release, curiosity got the best of me for firing up benchmarks of this latest AMD Optimizing C/C++ Compiler release.

27 July 07:17 AM EDT - Software - 1 Comment
DMA-Fence Deadline Awareness Proposed To Help Ensure GPU Drivers Render On-Time

There is the phenomenon on Linux where when double-buffered rendering and missing vblanks can lead to the GPU running at a lower frequency when instead the opposite should happen so it will try to not miss vblanks in the first place. In the past there's been talks of "boost" support in the GPU drivers or also workarounds from user-space like dynamic triple buffering, but sent out this week is a new proposal around DMA-Fence deadline awareness as another means of addressing this problem.

27 July 05:52 AM EDT - Linux Kernel - Stop Missing vBlanks - 6 Comments
RISC-V Developers Continue Working On KVM Support

Going on for more than one year now is the effort for supporting KVM virtualization with the RISC-V architecture, which is very much important for RISC-V processors to be able to eventually take lift in the server space. The KVM RISC-V enablement work is now up to its nineteenth revision but not yet clear if it's ready for mainlining.

27 July 05:30 AM EDT - Virtualization - KVM RISC-V - 8 Comments

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