Linux Hardware Reviews, Open-Source Benchmarks & Linux Performance


Clear Linux's make-fmv-patch Eases The Creation Of GCC FMV-Enabled Code Paths

One of the GCC compiler features unfortunately not taken advantage of by most Linux distributions is FMV - Function Multi-Versioning. FMV is what allows for the compilation of different tuned code paths depending upon the processor and for the particular code-path to be chosen at run-time, i.e. optimizing to your heart's content with AVX, SSE4, and other instruction set extensions and compiling all of that into a single binary and for the preferred code path to be taken depending upon the CPU running the binary so it will still run on older CPUs as well as today's most powerful processors.

4 Hours Ago - GNU - GCC Function Multi-Versioning
MoltenVK Sees Big Update To Jump-Start Vulkan On macOS In 2019

Next month MoltenVK will celebrate one year since being open-sourced for allowing the Vulkan API to function on Apple's macOS/iOS by mapping the Vulkan calls to the Apple Metal graphics/compute API. Just in time for that first birthday, a big MoltenVK update is now available.

8 Hours Ago - Vulkan - MoltenVK Release for Vulkan SDK 1.1.97
Mesa 19.0 RADV vs. AMDVLK 2019.Q1.2 vs. Radeon Software 18.50 Linux Vulkan Performance

With the latest AMDVLK Vulkan driver improvements back to coming out on a weekly basis by AMD and Mesa 19.0 development progressing ahead of its feature freeze later this month, here is a fresh Linux gaming benchmark comparison of the AMD Radeon Vulkan driver options on Linux. Tested this round with a Radeon RX 590 and RX Vega 64 was the latest Mesa 19.0 development state for RADV, this week's new AMDVLK 2019.Q1.2 driver snapshot, and the Radeon Software 18.50 proprietary driver while running a slew of Vulkan-powered Linux games and DXVK.

17 January 12:40 PM EST - Linux Gaming
ZFS On Linux Landing Workaround For Linux 5.0 Kernel Support

Last week I reported on ZFS On Linux breaking with Linux 5.0 due to some kernel symbols sought by this out-of-tree file-system driver no longer being exported and the upstream developers not willing to adjust for the ZoL code. That's still the case but the ZFS On Linux developers have a patch so at least the file-system driver will be able to build on Linux 5.0.

17 January 06:17 AM EST - Linux Kernel - ZFS On Linux
GNOME's Builder IDE Goes Through Its Biggest Code Refactoring Ever

The lead developer of the GNOME Builder integrated development environment, Christian Hergert, has just led his project through its largest code re-factoring yet. Builder 3.32 coming out in March with GNOME 3.32 features more than 100k lines of code changed with various underlying improvements as well as some new features for developers.

17 January 05:46 AM EST - GNOME - GNOME Builder 3.32
Systemd 241 Paired With Linux 4.19+ To Enable New Regular File & FIFO Protection

The Linux 4.19 kernel brought the ability to disallow the opening of FIFOs and regular files not owned by the user in world-writable sticky directories in the name of security. Had this ability been around previously it could have prevented a number of CVEs going back a long time. In helping ensure this functionality gets utilized, Systemd 241 will now set these sysctl options to enable the behavior by default.

17 January 01:00 AM EST - systemd - systemd 241
Fedora Still Needs Help Testing The New Zchunk Metadata Support

Fedora has been working on transitioning to Zchunk for its DNF metadata due to its good compression ratio while being delta-friendly and leveraging the existing work of Zstandard and Zsync/casync. The metadata has been offered in Zchunk for some weeks while more client testing is needed before landing that support in Rawhide and in turn for Fedora 30.

17 January 12:09 AM EST - Fedora - Fedora Zchunk Client
Intel To Eventually Explore Offering A Graphics Control Panel For Linux Systems

Intel's Linux graphics driver stack has never offered its own vendor-specific driver control panel GUI like is common among all major graphics vendors on Windows, but instead they've opted for the command-line experience and making use of common interfaces with what's offered by the different desktop environments for resolution handling, multi-monitor setup, etc. But moving forward they may end up bringing a new graphics driver control panel to Linux.

16 January 03:41 PM EST - Intel - Intel Graphics GUI Panel
Mesa 19.0 Deprecates GNU Autotools Build System In Favor Of Meson

Last month was a proposed patch that would have killed the Autotools build system within Mesa. Developers have decided for the upcoming Mesa 19.0 release not to eliminate this GNU Autotools support but rather to mark it as deprecated and require an extra flag in order to make use of it.

16 January 02:23 PM EST - Mesa - Autotools Deprecated
Khronos Exploring New Industry Standard For Heterogeneous Communications

From VR to autonomous vehicles to edge computing, The Khronos Group continues working on new industry standards for today's expanding compute landscape. Today the organization announced they are soliciting industry feedback and creating an exploratory group for a new, open industry standard around High Performance Embedded Computing (HPEC).

16 January 09:11 AM EST - Standards - High Performance Embedded Computing
AMDGPU Changes Begin Queuing Ahead Of Linux 5.1 Kernel Cycle

The drm-next-5.1-wip branch has been created by open-source AMD developers as they begin vetting the changes they plan to submit to DRM-Next for inclusion in the Linux 5.1 kernel cycle when it kicks off around the start of March.

16 January 12:04 AM EST - Radeon - AMDGPU For Linux 5.1
Fedora Decides To Not Allow SSPLv1 Licensed Software Into Its Repositories

Back in October, MongoDB announced the Server Side Public License v1 (SSPLv1) as their new license moving forward for this document-oriented database server over their existing AGPL code. SSPL was met with much controversy upon its unveiling and Fedora's legal team has now ruled it an invalid free software license for packaged software in its repositories.

15 January 07:31 PM EST - Fedora - Server Side Public License
Genode To Focus On Making Sculpt OS Relevant & Appealing In 2019

The Genode operating system framework based on a micro-kernel design and various original user-space components continues going strong a decade since its start. But it hasn't achieved too much appeal outside of its niche even when it began working on "Sculpt" as an operating system for general purposes use-cases and supporting common PC/laptop hardware. But they hope to change that in 2019.

15 January 03:53 PM EST - Operating Systems - Genode OS
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 760/960/1060 / RTX 2060 Linux Gaming & Compute Performance

The NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 is shipping today as the most affordable Turing GPU option to date at $349 USD. Last week we posted our initial GeForce RTX 2060 Linux review and followed-up with more 1080p and 1440p Linux gaming benchmarks after having more time with the card. In this article is a side-by-side performance comparison of the GeForce RTX 2060 up against the GTX 1060 Pascal, GTX 960 Maxwell, and GTX 760 Kepler graphics cards. Not only are we looking at the raw OpenGL, Vulkan, and OpenCL/CUDA compute performance between these four generations, but also the power consumption and performance-per-Watt.

15 January 11:00 AM EST - Graphics Cards
Mesa 18.3.2 Is Finally En Route With 78+ Changes

It's been more than a month since the debut of Mesa 18.3 and the emergency 18.3.1 release while due the holidays and the release manager being sick, the next point release fell off the tracks. Mesa 18.3.2 is now being crafted and should be out in the next few days. Given the time since the previous release, Mesa 18.3.2 is heavy on fixes.

15 January 09:45 AM EST - Mesa - Mesa 18.3.2
Linux Steam Integration 0.7.3 Released With Annoyance Fixes

Solus founder Ikey Doherty who is back working for Intel on the Clear Linux team and brought the Linux Steam Integration (LSI) into that fold has issued a new release of this software for improving the Steam integration on Linux.

15 January 07:21 AM EST - Clear Linux - Linux Steam Integration 0.7.3
RADV Vulkan Driver Picks Up Memory Budget Information For Mesa 19.0

With Mesa 19.0 entering its feature freeze this week, the race is on for developers to land their last minute additions to this next quarterly installment of Mesa. Valve developer Samuel Pitoiset has landed support in the Radeon "RADV" Vulkan driver for the new memory budget extension.

15 January 06:46 AM EST - Mesa - VK_EXT_memory_budget
Lczero Neural Network Chess Benchmarks With OpenCL Radeon vs. NVIDIA

Yesterday I posted a number of Lczero chess engine benchmarks on NVIDIA GPUs using its OpenCL back-end as well as its CUDA+cuDNN back-end, which offered massive performance gains compared to CL on the many tested NVIDIA GPUs. With the CUDA+cuDNN code performing so much better than OpenCL, some wondered whether NVIDIA was intentionally gimping their OpenCL performance. Well, here are results side-by-side now with Radeon GPUs on OpenCL.

15 January 06:29 AM EST - Hardware - Lczero OpenCL
Qt 6 To Begin Early Stages Of Development In Git

While Qt 6.0 isn't due out for the better part of two years still, early patches planned for Qt 6 are expected to begin taking shape within a Git staging branch.

15 January 05:43 AM EST - Qt - Qt 6 Git
Intel Sends Out First Batch Of Display/Graphics Driver Updates For Linux 5.1 Kernel

While the Linux 5.0 kernel won't even debut as stable until around the end of February, as is standard practice, it's open season for new feature improvements of the changes developers want to end up queuing into the "-next" branches ahead of the Linux 5.1 cycle. The Intel open-source driver developers on Monday sent in their initial batch of graphics driver changes for this next kernel cycle.

15 January 03:05 AM EST - Intel - Intel DRM Linux 5.1
Apple Opens Up Swift/C LSP Based On Clangd

Built atop LLVM's clangd server, Apple recently open-sourced SourceKit-LSP as a language server protocol for Swift and C-based languages. This allows for better integration with various IDEs and development tools.

15 January 12:07 AM EST - LLVM - Language Server Protocol
Deepin Desktop Option Approved For Fedora 30

Last month we mentioned that Fedora 30 was possibly picking up a Deepin Desktop Environment option for this Qt5-based desktop developed by the Deepin Linux distribution.

14 January 07:23 PM EST - Fedora - Fedora 30 + Deepin Desktop
PlaidML Deep Learning Framework Benchmarks With OpenCL On NVIDIA & AMD GPUs

Pointed out by a Phoronix reader a few days ago and added to the Phoronix Test Suite is the PlaidML deep learning framework that can run on CPUs using BLAS or also on GPUs and other accelerators via OpenCL. Here are our initial benchmarks of this OpenCL-based deep learning framework that is now being developed as part of Intel's AI Group and tested across a variety of AMD Radeon and NVIDIA GeForce graphics cards.

14 January 03:30 PM EST - Graphics Cards
More GNOME Performance Optimizations Being Tackled Thanks To Canonical

While there has already been a lot of exciting GNOME performance improvements so far during the GNOME 3.32 cycle, even more could be on the way with there still being a number of open merge requests for enhancing the performance of the GNOME desktop.

14 January 07:41 AM EST - GNOME - GNOME Performance
ET: Legacy 2.76 Released For Letting Enemy Territory Live On In 2019

The ET: Legacy open-source project derived from the id Tech 3 sources and letting Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory live on almost two decades later is out with their biggest release yet: version 2.76. ET: Legacy 2.76 itself is a big release but the developers involved still have more plans moving forward.

14 January 12:00 AM EST - Linux Gaming - ETLegacy 2.76