Learning More About Explicit Fencing & Android's Sync Framework
Written by Michael Larabel in Linux Kernel on 27 August 2016 at 08:53 PM EDT. Add A Comment
With the sync validation framework leaving the staging area in Linux 4.9 and other work going on around the Android sync framework and explicit fencing, this functionality is becoming a reality that ultimately benefits the Linux desktop.

Collabora developer Gustavo Padovan presented at this week's LinuxCon 2016 conference about explicit fencing support in the mainline kernel with a "new era of graphics."

Fencing comes down to ordering between operations and synchronized buffer sharing. With explicit fencing, user-space is aware of what's happening with fences going to user-space and user-space being able to control synchronization. One of the benefits is that it can avoid blocking the rendering of an entire desktop if it would otherwise be held up waiting for a buffer to render. Mesa's implementation in user-space is being worked on to support Android's EGL extensions around sync with the new kernel functionality. Explicit fencing is also mandated by the Vulkan API.

For those interested in what's going on for explicit fencing and the port from Android Sync, the Collabora presentation is now online. So if you want to learn more about this topic, grab a weekend beverage and hit up the PDF slides.
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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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