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today's howtos

More in Tux Machines

Plans for Linux 4.20 and Progress on Linux 4.19

  • AMD Begins Staging AMDGPU Patches For Linux 4.20/5.0, Including FreeSync Refactoring
    With the DRM feature work for Linux 4.19 now in the kernel, AMD's stellar open-source driver team has begun staging their work-in-progress changes for the AMDGPU Direct Rendering Manager driver for the next kernel cycle. There is now drm-next-4.20-wip as part of AMD's development Git tree of the Linux kernel for Radeon/AMDGPU development. That's for "Linux 4.20" that will almost surely be renamed to "Linux 5.0" given Linus Torvalds' expressed versioning preference of bumping the major kernel version once hitting that number equal to all of his fingers and toes.
  • More AMDGPU Work For Linux 4.19 Has VCN + PSP Firmware Hookup For Future Hardware
    The good news is that the open-source AMD graphics team continues working on support for upcoming hardware, but the bad news is that it looks like their VCN video hardware might be a bit more locked down than it is now. With current Raven Ridge APUs there is VCN as "Video Core Next" as a replacement to UVD and VCE for video decoding and encoding, respectively. This dedicated hardware core for video encode/decode has been supported well now for some months on the open-source Linux graphics driver stack. The latest patches hitting the mailing list for hopeful integration to Linux 4.19 are a bit interesting and reveal a change for future hardware.
  • POWER Changes On The Way To Linux 4.19 Include More Spectre Work
    The POWER architecture changes have been submitted for the in-development Linux 4.19 kernel.
  • Qualcomm Adreno 600 Series Support Submitted For Linux 4.19
    Following the main DRM features update for Linux 4.19, a secondary pull request has now been submitted that offers up the nine thousand lines of code for bringing up the Adreno 600 series support for supporting the very latest Qualcomm Snapdragon SoCs. Last week Freedreno/MSM founder and maintainer Rob Clark proposed getting A6xx support into Linux 4.19 after this Direct Rendering Manager code has been reviewed and revised for months on mailing lists. These code contributions in part come from Qualcomm / Code Aurora and there are also Google developers working on it too, including the bring-up of A6xx support within the Freedreno Gallium3D driver. This A6xx device support is good enough for running various OpenGL test cases and other basic code. The Adreno 600 series hardware can be found in Snapdragon SoCs like the new Snapdragon 845, 730, and others.

Mir Has Partial Support For The NVIDIA Proprietary Driver, X11 Support Remains WIP

Canonical's team responsible for continuing to advance the Mir display server has been making good progress this summer on fleshing out some missing functionality. This week partial support for the NVIDIA proprietary driver was merged. In particular, the EGLStreams platform support. This is the initial bits for getting the NVIDIA proprietary driver to play along with Mir, but isn't yet the full implementation required to get OpenGL clients working on Mir with the NVIDIA driver. That work is still being pursued and is a work-in-progress. Mir's path for NVIDIA support is similar to that of the Wayland compositors with needing to implement EGLStreams and there not yet being any new Unix device memory allocation API that NVIDIA has been pushing for years to create the best of both worlds -- in terms of EGLStreams and GBM APIs for all driver vendors to agree upon. Read more Direct: Mir News: 17th August 2018

Lubuntu Plans Explained

  • Lubuntu Planning Switch To Wayland, Porting Openbox To Mir
    Ubuntu derivative Lubuntu that is now using the LXQt desktop environment has laid out more of their plans to switch over to Wayland rather than the existing X.Org based session. In order to achieve their Wayland support with the LXQt desktop, they intend to port the Openbox window manager to using the Mir display server and also leveraging QtLayerShell. Mir, of course, has been focused on Wayland compatibility the past year and is becoming quite solid as of late with its core Wayland protocol support.
  • Lubuntu Development Newsletter #9
    We’ve been polishing the desktop more, but work has been blocked by the still ongoing Qt transition. The 16.04 to 18.04 upgrade has now been enabled! Please do let us know if there’s any issues. Here’s a video we made when 17.04 went End of Life; the instructions are still current. Our main developer, Simon Quigley, became an Ubuntu Core Developer this past Monday! He now has access to the entire Ubuntu archive.

Devices/Embedded: Raspberry Pi, Librem and More

  • A Raspberry Pi-style computer you can build yourself: Blueberry Pi
    If buying a Raspberry Pi or one of the many other single-board computers available isn't a tough enough challenge, hacker Marcel Thürmer has sketched out enough details about his Blueberry Pi open-source hardware project to help the like-minded take things to the next level. As Thürmer wryly notes on the GitHub page where he's left the Blueberry Pi's schematics, this is just "another fruit single-board computer" based on the Allwinner V3s system on chip (SoC). However, while some single-board computer makers have open-sourced their hardware designs, unless you're building a large enough quantity, it's probably not worth the cost or effort.
  • Ethical aesthetics – Librem 5 design report #7
    You may have noticed that there is no obvious visual branding on the Librem laptops. While this was at first a technical limitation on the very first Librem model (back in 2015), the subtle and minimalistic branding that began on newer models in 2016 was a conscious design decision. Now, we’re hoping to refine the physical branding further. One reason for a minimalist design is aesthetic. Just like on a piece of hand-made jewelry, we wish the branding to be made in the form of an inconspicuous marking that doesn’t interfere with the natural beauty of the overall shape.
  • Intel launches seven NUCs with Coffee Lake and 10nm Canyon Lake CPUs
    Intel has launched five, barebones “Bean Canyon” NUC mini-PC kits equipped with 14nm, 8th Gen “Coffee Lake” CPUs starting at $299. It also unveiled two configured, Windows 10 equipped NUCs that tap its 10nm “Canyon Lake” chips.
  • Rugged, Linux-friendly embedded PC plugs you into the CANBus
    IEI announced an IP40-protected “DRPC-130-AL” DIN-rail computer with an Atom x5-E3930, CANBus, SATA, eMMC, 4x USB 3.0, dual HDMI and GbE, extended temperature support, and shock and vibration resistance. IEI’s fanless DRPC-130-AL may be the quintessential compact industrial embedded PC. Nothing much stands out except for the CANBus port, but IEI Technology has crammed a lot into a compact, 1.4 kg, 174 x 130 x 58.8mm chassis.