GNU Linux-libre 5.11 Released With Many Peripheral Drivers Needing To Be De-Blobbed
Written by Michael Larabel in GNU on 15 February 2021 at 10:09 AM EST. 9 Comments
GNU --
Building off yesterday's release of the Linux 5.11 kernel, the GNU folks have put out their "GNU Linux-libre 5.11-gnu" kernel that removes support for loading closed-source kernel modules, stripping out drivers/functionality that are dependent upon closed-source microcode/firmware, and other sanitization work in the name of maintaining a fully free software system.

There are many notable improvements with upstream Linux 5.11 while the GNU alterations continue to be in the name of maintaining a free software kernel. GNU FSF LA developer Alexandre Oliva wrote of their 5.11-gnu release, "This was a quite busy cycle. New drivers needed cleaning up in a broader than usual range of types of peripherals: qat_4xxx crypto, lt9611uxc dsi/hdmi bridge, ccs/smia++ sensor, ath11k_pci, nxp audio transceiver, and the mhi bus pci controller. The wimax drivers were moved in the tree, so the code to clean them up was adjusted. Other drivers that needed adjusting to deblobbing were wakeup m3 rproc, idt82p33 ptp clock, and qualcomm arm64. New blob versions had to be handled in amdgpu, btqca, btrtl, btusb, i915 csr."

More details on the GNU Linux-libre 5.11-gnu kernel release via the release announcement.
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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 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 OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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