A Number Of Intel/AMD x86 Updates Hit Linux 5.8
Written by Michael Larabel in Linux Kernel on 2 June 2020 at 08:45 AM EDT. 6 Comments
A number of x86 (x86_64) pull requests have been sent in for the in-development Linux 5.8 kernel.

Here are the latest pull requests on the Intel/AMD x86 CPU front. The x86/cpu changes include:

- The existing x86 family/model macros have now been extended to also handle the CPU stepping. This is being done due to Intel increasingly using different CPU steppings between generations and in some cases the stepping being significant differences when it comes to hardware mitigations and handling of different errata. With X86_MATCH_VENDOR_FAM_MODEL_STEPPINGS_FEATURE it's now easier for matching against particular CPU steppings.

- The AMD IRPERF handling workaround was incorrectly marked when it should have been set as a legacy erratum. While it doesn't affect older hardware, on modern AMD systems this change to erratum #1054 handling means a few less MSR reads (RDMSRs) per thread on the system.

The x86/fpu changes include:

- XSAVES supervisor states support for handling new Intel CPU features including PT (Processor Tracing), PASID, and CET (Control-Flow Enforcement Technology).

Lastly on the x86/cache front:

- Support for wider Memory Bandwidth Monitoring (MBM) counters.

Meanwhile some notable Intel/AMD changes on the EDAC (Error Detection and Correction) front there are:

- Fixing the loading of the i10nm_edac driver (the EDAC code for 10nm Intel CPUs) on some steppings of Ice Lake and Tremont/Jacobsville.

Lastly when it comes to the x86 platform drivers primarily around Linux laptop drivers there are:

- Support for media keys on the ASUS Zenbook UX325JA/UX425JA laptops. These are newer ASUS Icelake-based laptops. The ASUS WMI driver meanwhile can handle the T100TA, T100CHI, T100HA, and T200TA models.

- Refactoring of the Intel SCU driver to support Elkhart Lake.

- A Slimboot signal handling driver has been added for this open-source firmware implementation out of Intel.

- Support for finally being able to control dual fan ThinkPad laptops where as previously that ThinkPad driver code has only worked with single fan laptop models.

- Updates to the Intel Speed Select tooling.

Linux 5.8 kernel benchmarks to begin after the merge window closure at the end of next week.
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