VRAMFS: Using Your Video RAM As A Linux File-System
Written by Michael Larabel in Free Software on 13 December 2014 at 08:56 PM EST. 20 Comments
The latest FUSE-based Linux file-system is VRAMFS to provide a general purpose file-system within your graphics card's dedicated video memory.

VRAMFS is similar in nature to RAMDISK but uses the dedicated video memory of graphics cards for temporary file storage. VRAMFS will work with users of modern Linux kernel releases who have FUSE file-system support and a discrete GPU that supports OpenCL 1.1.

Of course, VRAMFS isn't as fast as using a RAM disk file-system, it's not intended for too serious uage, and you're limited by your graphics card's vRAM capacity that's usually 1GB to 4GB with most modern GPUs. As another shortcoming, most operations are not thread-safe.

The performance of VRAMFS for now is decent but the developer hopes to make it peak against PCI Express bandwidth limitations. The developer is also looking at a potential future work item of implementing RAID0 support for multi-GPU setups like those using NVIDIA SLI or AMD CrossFire.

Those curious to explore this MIT-licensed FUSE file-system can find its code hosted on GitHub.
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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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