Linux Hardware Reviews, Open-Source Benchmarks & Linux Performance


Preliminary Support Allows Linux KVM To Boot Xen HVM Guests

As one of the most interesting patch series sent over by an Oracle developer in quite a while at least on the virtualization front, a "request for comments" series was sent out on Wednesday that would enable the Linux Kernel-based Virtual Machine (KVM) to be able to boot Xen HVM guests.

4 Hours Ago - Virtualization - Kernel-based VM Booting Xen HVM
Intel Ready To Add Their Experimental "Iris" Gallium3D Driver To Mesa

For just over the past year Intel open-source driver developers have been developing a new Gallium3D-based OpenGL driver for Linux systems as the eventual replacement to their long-standing "i965 classic" Mesa driver. The Intel developers are now confident enough in the state of this new driver dubbed Iris that they are looking to merge the driver into mainline Mesa proper.

20 February 05:19 PM EST - Intel - Intel Iris Mesa
Extensive Benchmarks Looking At AMD Znver1 GCC 9 Performance, EPYC Compiler Tuning

With the GCC 9 compiler due to be officially released as stable in the next month or two, we've been running benchmarks of this near-final state to the GNU Compiler Collection on a diverse range of processors. In recent weeks that has included extensive compiler benchmarks on a dozen x86_64 systems, POWER9 compiler testing on the Talos II, and also the AArch64 compiler performance on recent releases of GCC and LLVM Clang. In this latest installment of our GCC 9 compiler benchmarking is an extensive look at the AMD EPYC Znver1 performance on various releases of the GCC compiler as well as looking at various optimization levels under this new compiler on the Znver1 processor.

20 February 11:26 AM EST - Software
TuxClocker: Another GPU Overclocking GUI For Linux

Adding to the list of third-party GPU overclocking utilities for Linux is TuxClocker, a Qt5-based user-interface currently with support for NVIDIA graphics cards and experimental support for AMD GPUs.

20 February 10:00 AM EST - Hardware - TuxClocker Qt5 Overclocking GUI
OpenSUSE Leap 15.1 Reaches Beta Milestone

This week openSUSE Leap 15.1 reached the beta stage for this Linux distribution derived from the same sources as SUSE Linux Enterprise 15 SP1.

20 February 09:38 AM EST - SUSE - openSUSE Leap 15.1
Gallium Nine With NIR Is Now Running Most D3D9 Games "Flawlessly"

Towards the beginning of the month we reported on the Gallium Nine state tracker working on NIR support as an alternative to its original focus on the common TGSI intermediate representation to Gallium3D. That NIR-ified version of Gallium Nine is now working and beginning to run most Direct3D 9 games fine.

20 February 06:53 AM EST - Mesa - Gallium Nine + NIR
KDE To Support Matrix Decentralized Instant Messaging

The GNOME project has been working on integration with the Matrix federated real-time communication protocol for a while, which can bridge to other platforms like IRC, WhatsApp, XMPP, and Telegram. KDE is also now backing Matrix and will be supporting it by its instant messaging framework.

20 February 06:13 AM EST - KDE - KDE + Matrix
Mesa 19.0-RC5 Released As The Cycle Drags Into Overtime

Mesa 19.0-RC5 was issued a short time ago as the latest release candidate for Mesa 19.0. Due to blocker bugs remaining, at least one more release candidate is likely next week before seeing the official release.

20 February 12:01 AM EST - Mesa - Mesa 19.0-RC5
RadeonSI Gets NIR Improvements, Enabled By Default For Civilization VI

The RadeonSI NIR back-end as an alternative to its longstanding TGSI usage continues to be improved upon as a prerequisite for supporting OpenGL 4.6 with SPIR-V ingestion. A fresh batch of RadeonSI NIR work was merged today, including to enable it by default for one Linux game.

19 February 07:46 PM EST - Radeon - RadeonSI NIR
OpenCL 2.2-10 Released With Fixes

While "OpenCL-Next" will hopefully be on track for releasing later this year as the next big update to OpenCL, OpenCL 2.2-10 was released today by The Khronos Group as the latest maintenance update to the nearly two year old OpenCL 2.2 specification.

19 February 05:49 PM EST - Standards - OpenCL 2.2-10
Wayland 1.17 & Weston 6.0 Reach Alpha, Officially Releasing Next Month

Out today are the first alpha releases for Wayland 1.17 and the Weston 6.0 reference compositor. This alpha release is about two weeks behind schedule but the developers have updated their plans to now ship the beta releases on 5 March, release candidates begin on 12 March, and potentially releasing the stable versions of Wayland 1.17.0 and Weston 6.0.0 on 19 March.

19 February 04:07 PM EST - Wayland - Wayland 1.17 + Weston 6.0
Using Clear Linux As A Desktop Linux Distribution - It Works Well But With Some "Papercuts"

While I am a big fan of Intel's Clear Linux distribution for its raw performance on x86_64 hardware that for most workloads goes unsurpassed by any other Linux platform out-of-the-box, there has been a lot of Phoronix readers wondering how well it could function as a standard desktop Linux distribution. With upgrading my main production system earlier this month, I decided to try out Clear Linux and now with 200+ hours into using it as the OS on my main production system, I figured it'd be good to share my initial thoughts.

19 February 10:00 AM EST - Operating Systems
XFS Copy-On-Write Support Being Improved, Always CoW Option

One of the recent XFS innovations under work and maturing with time has been Copy on Write (CoW) support for this mature Linux file-systems. The XFS CoW support continues to be improved upon and an "always CoW" option is being prepared to always force this behavior.

19 February 07:43 AM EST - Linux Storage - XFS COW
ACPI 6.3 Support Coming With The Linux 5.1 Kernel

Version 6.3 of the Advanced Configuration and Power Interface (ACPI) was just recently published by the UEFI Forum and support for this latest ACPI revision is on the way with the Linux 5.1 kernel.

19 February 06:51 AM EST - Hardware - ACPI 6.3
Linux Seeing Support For The HyperBus

The Linux kernel is in the process of receiving support for the HyperBus, a high performance DDR bus interface used for connecting the processor/controller/ASIC to "HyperFlash" flash memory or "HyperRAM" DRAM.

19 February 06:02 AM EST - Linux Kernel - Linux HyperBus
It's Still Undecided Whether Ubuntu 20.04 LTS Will Support 32-bit x86 (i386)

Ubuntu 17.10 dropped its i386 / 32-bit x86 installer image while the i386 port has remained part of the package archive. Other Ubuntu derivatives over the past year have also moved to drop their 32-bit installer images and with Lubuntu/Xubuntu now ending their ISOs for that port, it's hitting the end of the road. Now for Ubuntu 20.04 LTS, there might not even be the i386 port.

18 February 06:21 PM EST - Ubuntu - Ubuntu 20.04 - i386
Outreachy Summer 2019 Applications Open With Expanded Eligibility

Outreachy, the program formerly known as the Outreach Program for Women and intended to get more females and other under-represented groups in technology engaged with Linux/open-source projects, has opened up their application process for those seeking a summer internship while receiving a $5,500 USD stipend.

18 February 03:06 PM EST - Free Software - Outreachy Summer 2019
Linux 5.0 I/O Scheduler Benchmarks On Laptop & Desktop Hardware

Our past tests have shown that while most Linux distributions default to "none" for their I/O scheduler on NVMe solid-state storage, that isn't necessarily the best scheduler decision in all cases. Here are tests using the Linux 5.0 Git kernel using laptop and desktop hardware while evaluating no I/O scheduler, mq-deadline, Kyber, and BFQ scheduler options.

18 February 10:00 AM EST - Software
Chamferwm: A Vulkan-Powered X11 Window Manager

While we have talked about the possibilities of writing a Vulkan Wayland compositor and there was even a short-lived Vulkan renderer for KDE's KWin, it's also possible to write a X11 window manager around the Vulkan interfaces.

18 February 09:03 AM EST - Vulkan - Chamferwm
SVT-VP9 Is Intel's Latest Open-Source Video Encoder Yielding High Performance VP9

At the start of the month Intel open-sourced SVT-AV1 aiming for high-performance AV1 video encoding on CPUs. That complemented their existing SVT-HEVC encoder for H.265 content and already SVT-AV1 has been seeing nice performance improvements. Intel now has released SVT-VP9 as a speedy open-source VP9 video encoder.

17 February 03:53 PM EST - Intel - SVT-VP9
Noctua's NH-U9 TR4-SP3 Is Still The Best 4U EPYC / Threadripper Cooler I've Found

If you are in the market for an AMD Ryzen Threadripper or AMD EPYC heatsink that fits within 4U height requirements, the Noctua NH-U9 TR4-SP3 is still easily the best option available. I'm now running the NH-U9 TR4-SP3 in five different EPYC/Threadripper systems in the racks and they work out splendid.

17 February 11:02 AM EST - AMD - Noctua NH-U9 TR4-SP3
Wine-Staging 4.2 Released - Now Less Than 800 Patches Atop Upstream Wine

Wine 4.2 debuted on Friday and now the latest Wine-Staging release is available that continues carrying hundreds of extra patches re-based atop upstream Wine to provide various experimental/testing fixes and other feature additions not yet ready for mainline Wine.

17 February 07:46 AM EST - WINE - Wine-Staging 4.2
KDE Continues Overhauling System Settings, More Discover Improvements

Sunday mornings mean another weekly recap of the KDE improvements made, thanks to the great analysis by KDE developer Nathan Graham. While Plasma 5.15 was released this week, the KDE developers are already hard at work on KDE Plasma 5.16.

17 February 07:23 AM EST - KDE - KDE Improvements - 17 February
Fedora 31 Planning To Use Cgroups V2 By Default

While the Linux kernel has shipped Cgroups V2 as stable since early 2016, on Fedora and most other Linux distributions it hasn't been enabled by default over the original control groups "Cgroups" implementation. But come Fedora 31 later this year, they are now planning to make it the default.

17 February 12:07 AM EST - Linux Kernel - Fedora 31