Speck, Steam Play, RTX 2080 & Linux Kernel Activity Dominated The Scene In September
Written by Michael Larabel in Phoronix on 1 October 2018 at 06:58 AM EDT. 1 Comment
PHORONIX --
Over the course of September on Phoronix were 308 original news articles and 22 featured Linux hardware reviews and benchmarking articles. There was a lot of interesting activity on the hardware side from continued Threadripper tests to the GeForce RTX 2080 series launch as well as interesting news from the Linux code of conduct to the controversial Speck crypto code being removed.

As the usual monthly recap, below is a look at the most viewed content on Phoronix over the past month from each and every day. As always if you appreciate all of the content to find on Phoronix in a punctual manner, consider showing your support by joining Phoronix Premium or making a PayPal tip. At the very least please do not view this site with any ad-blocker as it severely hampers my ability to continue working on Phoronix. Thanks for your understanding and support.

The Controversial Speck Encryption Code Will Indeed Be Dropped From The Linux Kernel
While Google got the NSA-developed Speck into the Linux kernel on the basis of wanting to use Speck for file-system encryption on very low-end Android (Go) devices, last month they decided to abandon those plans and instead work out a new "HPolyC" algorithm for use on these bottom-tier devices due to all the concerns over Speck potentially being back-doored by the US National Security Agency.

AMD Contributes 8.5x More Code To The Linux Kernel Than NVIDIA, But Intel Still Leads
Given all the new hardware enablement work going into the Linux kernel recently, I was curious how the code contributions were stacking up by some of the leading hardware vendors... Here are those interesting numbers.

Some Linux Gamers Using Wine/DXVK To Play Blizzard's Overwatch Banned - Updated
Multiple individuals are reporting that they have been just recently banned by Blizzard for playing their games -- seemingly Overwatch is the main title -- when using Wine with the DXVK D3D11-over-Vulkan translation layer.

The Linux Kernel Adopts A Code of Conduct
Prior to releasing Linux 4.19-rc4 and Linus Torvalds taking a temporary leave of absence to reflect on his behavior / colorful language, he did apply a Code of Conduct to the Linux kernel.

Linux 4.19-rc4 Released As Linus Temporarily Steps Away From Kernel Maintainership
Linux 4.19-rc4 is out today as the very latest weekly development test kernel for Linux 4.19. It's another fairly routine kernel update at this stage, but more shocking is that Linus Torvalds will be taking a temporary leave from kernel maintainership and Greg Kroah-Hartman will take over the rest of the Linux 4.19 cycle.

10 Reasons Linux Gamers Might Want To Pass On The NVIDIA RTX 20 Series
Continuing on from the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 expectations on Linux shared earlier this week, here's a list of ten reasons why Linux gamers might want to pass on these soon-to-launch graphics cards from NVIDIA.

Intel Releases New BSD-Licensed Open-Source Firmware Implementation
At the European Open-Source Firmware Conference happening this week in Erlangen, Intel announced the open-source "Slimbootloader" (also referred to as Slim Bootloader) project that is quite exciting.

The Linux Kernel Has Grown By 225k Lines of Code So Far This Year From 3.3k Developers
After writing yesterday about kernel contributions of AMD vs. NVIDIA vs. Intel, I kicked off the hours-long process of gitstats analyzing the Linux kernel Git repository for some fresh numbers on the current kernel development trends.

There's A New Libre GPU Effort Building On RISC-V, Rust, LLVM & Vulkan
Over the past decade and a half of covering the Linux graphics scene, there have been many attempts at providing a fully open-source GPU (or even just display adapter) down to the hardware level, but none of them have really panned out from Project VGA to other FPGA designs. There's a new very ambitious project trying to create a "libre 3D GPU" built atop RISC-V, leveraging Rust and LLVM on the software side, and would also support Vulkan.

Flatpaks Are Now Sort Of Working On Microsoft Windows
Flatpak creator and lead developer Alexander Larsson of Red Hat has got the basics of Flatpak applications working under Microsoft Windows 10.

The most popular featured articles/reviews were:

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680 To RTX 2080 Ti Graphics/Compute Performance
Yesterday were the initial NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Ti Linux benchmarks based upon my early testing of this high-end Turing graphics card paired with their new 410 Linux graphics driver. For your viewing pleasure today is a look at how the RTX 2080 Ti compares to the top-end cards going back to Kepler... Or, simply put, it's the GeForce GTX 680 vs. GTX 780 Ti vs. 980 Ti vs. 1080 Ti vs. 2080 Ti comparison with OpenGL and Vulkan graphics tests as well as some initial OpenCL / CUDA tests but more Turing GPU compute tests are currently being conducted. For making this historical comparison more interesting are also power consumption and performance-per-Watt metrics.

Initial NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Ti Linux Benchmarks
Here are the first of many benchmarks of the GeForce RTX 2080 Ti "Turing" graphics card under Linux with this initial piece exploring the OpenGL/Vulkan gaming performance.

ROC-RK3328-CC: A Raspberry Pi Competitor With Gigabit Ethernet, USB3, DDR4
The folks from LoverPi.com have sent out some of their newest ARM SBCs. What we're taking a look and benchmarking first is the Libre Computer Board ROC-RK3328-CC. Pricing on this board, which was developed between the Libre Computer Project and Firefly, starts at $35 USD with 1GB of DDR4 but at $80 USD a 4GB version can be acquired. This quad-core 64-bit ARM board has modern features like Gigabit Ethernet, USB 3.0, and other interfaces over what is found with current generation Raspberry Pi hardware.

The Current Linux Performance On 22 Intel / AMD Desktop Systems
For your Linux benchmark viewing pleasure today are test results from twenty-two distinct Intel / AMD systems when running a recent release of the performance-optimized Clear Linux distribution and the hardware spanning from old AMD FX and Intel Core i3 Haswell CPUs up through the high-end desktop Core i9 and Threadripper processors.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Ti Shows Very Strong Compute Performance Potential
Besides the new GeForce RTX 2080 series being attractive for developers wanting to make use of new technologies like RTX/ray-tracing, mesh shaders, and DLSS (Deep Learning Super Sampling), CUDA and OpenCL benchmarking so far on the GeForce RTX 2080 Ti is yielding impressive performance -- even outside of the obvious AI / deep learning potential workloads with the Turing tensor cores. Here are some benchmarks looking at the OpenCL/CUDA performance on the high-end Maxwell, Pascal, and Turing cards as well as an AMD Radeon RX Vega 64 for reference. System power consumption, performance-per-Watt, and performance-per-dollar metrics also round out this latest Ubuntu Linux GPU compute comparison.

macOS 10.14 Mojave vs. Ubuntu 18.04 LTS vs. Clear Linux Benchmarks
With macOS Mojave having been released earlier this week, I've been benchmarking this latest Apple operating system release on a MacBook Pro compared to Ubuntu 18.04.1 LTS with the latest updates as well as Intel's high-performance Clear Linux rolling-release operating systems to see how the performance compares.

September 2018 Drivers: The Current Linux Performance & Perf-Per-Watt From NVIDIA Kepler To Pascal vs. AMD
There is one week to go until NVIDIA begins shipping the GeForce RTX 2080 "Turing" series but while waiting for that hardware, here is a look back at how various graphics cards are performing for Linux games from the GTX 1000 Pascal series back through the GTX 600 Kepler series. On the AMD side in this comparison is also going from Vega back to the GCN 1.0 Southern Islands. The Vulkan/OpenGL Linux gaming performance is being looked at as well as the overall system power consumption and performance-per-Watt.

The Current Linux Performance With 16 ARM Boards
Last week I provided a fresh look at the latest Linux performance on 22 Intel/AMD systems while for kicking off the benchmarking this week is a look at the current Linux performance on sixteen different ARM single board computers / developer boards from low-end to high-end.

A Look At The Linux Graphics/Gaming Performance With GNOME 3.30 X.Org/Wayland
Given last week's big GNOME 3.30 release I was eager to test the updated desktop environment with its Mutter compositor improvements on Wayland as well as seeing how its performance under the conventional X.Org Server. Here are some of these benchmarks of various graphics applications and games tested under both GNOME 3.28.3 and GNOME 3.30.0 with both Wayland and X.Org sessions.

The Linux 4.19 AMDGPU + Mesa 18.3 Performance From The Radeon HD 7950 To RX Vega 64
Here are the results from some weekend benchmarking looking at the current stage of the AMDGPU + RadeonSI/RADV open-source AMD Linux graphics card performance when using the very latest code from the Linux 4.19 development kernel and Mesa 18.3. It's also an interesting mix of AMD Radeon graphics cards from the HD 7950 through the latest RX Vega 64.

About The Author
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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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