RC6 Is Now Flipped On For Intel SNB, IVB Hardware
Written by Michael Larabel in Intel on 16 December 2011 at 04:03 PM EST. Add A Comment
INTEL --
RC6 power-savings is now on by default for Intel Sandy Bridge and Ivy Bridge graphics hardware in the upcoming Linux 3.2 kernel.

RC6 allows for increased power savings and improved performance by allowing the graphics processor to enter a lower power state. We knew Intel was planning for RC6 in Linux 3.2, but the commit was finally pulled today by Linus Torvalds.

It's this commit in the mainline kernel that lands the support. Earlier generations of Intel graphics hardware don't have RC6 enabled there since it's likely broken. The RC6 feature can also be manually toggled via the i915.i915_enable_rc6 kernel module parameter.

It's a bit interesting that Linus decided to pull this patch so late in the Linux 3.2 cycle when he's been cracking down on non-regression-fixes at this point in the cycle and RC6 has been known to be problematic in the past. Just recently Linus was ranting about another Linux DRM pull for Linux 3.2 that he ultimately rejected on the basis of not being a regression fix.
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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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