Intel Beignet Open-Source OpenCL Support Is Getting Better
Written by Michael Larabel in Intel on 27 May 2014 at 12:42 PM EDT. 2 Comments
INTEL --
Beignet as the open-source project to provide Intel OpenCL support that works with Intel's open-source Linux graphics driver stack is beginning to show signs of maturity and progress so that Intel Linux desktop users can finally begin exploiting the GPGPU potential of their hardware.

In response to Intel updating their Linux OpenCL SDK that's closed-source and CPU-only, Beignet developer Zhigang Gong at Intel made some remarks within our forums about the progress of Beignet in recent times.

Zhigang shared, "The beignet team have been working hard in the past months. And now, beignet could get about 99% pass rate on all the test suite we have now including opencv ocl test suite/piglit and some other internal test suite.
And beignet is now about 10-20x faster than the last released version 0.8. The baytrail support is done in good shape, and the haswell support is also almost done." It's a surprise to hear their 99% pass rate as at last check Beignet was still far from feature-complete, but it looks like they've made a lot of headway, also with the performance now being 10~20x faster than Beignet 0.8 from just earlier this year. Bay Trail and Haswell support for Beignet is expected and a win.

In response to a Phoronix reader question about Beignet tending to fail to build against the latest LLVM code, Zhigang added, "We really wanted to keep up with the latest LLVM version. But we just found that is not such an easy thing for the following reasons´╝Ü 1. LLVM change interfaces very freqently, even without a version bump. 2. Sometime, new LLVM release introduces severity OpenCL related regressions, for example when we tried to update to clang/llvm 4.4. We submitted the related bugs into the llvm bug tracking system. But there are no responses for months. So we change to stick to one stable version which is LLVM/clang 3.3 currently. And then before next major release, we will try to make it work with latest LLVM/Clang if possible. Anyway, thanks for point this out, this is really one of the pain with llvm/clang."

Zhigang Gong also added that the next Beignet release should happen in about one month. Those wishing to learn more about Intel's Beignet project can visit the FreeDesktop.org project page.
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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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