xf86-video-intel Gets Coffee Lake Support
Written by Michael Larabel in Intel on 11 January 2018 at 05:26 AM EST. 12 Comments
INTEL --
The xf86-video-intel DDX driver now has support for the first "Coffee Lake" processors.

While the onboard graphics on Coffee Lake CPUs didn't really change compared to Kabylake besides renaming then "HD Graphics" to "UHD Graphics", up until now the xf86-video-intel DDX driver has not had the PCI IDs for support even with these processors shipping for months. That's now changed with the Coffee Lake S SKUs being added to Git via this commit.

As far as why it's taken so long, the xf86-video-intel driver still appears to be in a deprecated state -- just not officially stated. It's now been four years since the last stable release of xf86-video-intel and in that time working on xf86-video-intel 3.0 but even there the last development release was three years ago.

They apparently don't want to put the final nail in the coffin but most Linux distributions now have switched to defaulting to xf86-video-modesetting for the X.Org DDX drivers and that's what they have been encouraging as well, which is why the Coffee Lake PCI IDs haven't been a priority. But now the PCI IDs are in Git if you want to use these newer processors with this Intel DDX driver and its SNA 2D acceleration architecture. From time to time Chris Wilson is still hacking on the SNA acceleration architecture, but that's about it in the xf86-video-intel space.


The benefit of xf86-video-modesetting is that it's universally supported by DRM/KMS drivers and pipes 2D via OpenGL, reducing the maintenance burden of needing to maintain any 2D code-paths manually, etc. Plus the DDX becomes irrelevant as more Linux desktops switch over to Wayland.

The final piece of the Linux open-source driver stack puzzle not yet seeing Coffee Lake support is Beignet Git for OpenCL compute support. That too just needs the PCI IDs added.

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Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 10,000 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 OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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