Linux 5.3 Picks Up Utilization Clamping - Ensuring GUI Threads Get Maximum Frequency
Written by Michael Larabel in Linux Kernel on 10 July 2019 at 03:24 PM EDT. 13 Comments
LINUX KERNEL --
The scheduler changes for the Linux 5.3 kernel are as busy as ever.

One of the most interesting scheduler changes for Linux 5.3 was made by Arm's Patrick Bellasi. The addition is introducing utilization clamping support as an extension of their work on the Energy Aware Scheduling framework in order to boost some workloads while capping background workloads. Energy Aware Scheduling factors in the CPU topology of modern hardware -- particularly Arm big.LITTLE designs -- with differing power and performance characteristics in order to better schedule what CPU cores should be used for a given workload.

With this new utilization clamping support, the aim is to ensure GUI threads get a high performance core / maximum frequency while background processing tasks would be shifted to the lower-power/performance cores. As part of the utilization clamping are new controls via sysfs for adjusting the "uclamp" behavior.

The scheduler changes for Linux 5.3 also contain other optimizations and fixes throughout.
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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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