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Kernel: Threading, Streebog, USB 3.0, "Thermal Pressure" and More

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Linux
  • A Look At Linux Application Scaling Up To 128 Threads

    Arriving last week in our Linux benchmarking lab was a dual EPYC server -- this Dell PowerEdge R7425 is a beast of a system with two AMD EPYC 7601 processors yielding a combined 64 cores / 128 threads, 512GB of RAM (16 x 32GB DDR4), and 20 x 500GB Samsung 860 EVO SSDs. There will be many interesting benchmarks from this server in the days and weeks ahead. For some initial measurements during the first few days of stress testing this 2U rack server, here is a look at how well various benchmarks/applications are scaling from two to 128 threads.

  • Linux Kernel Patches Posted For Streebog - Crypto From Russia's FSB

    Just months after the controversial Speck crypto code was added to the Linux kernel that raised various concerns due to its development by the NSA and potential backdoors, which was then removed from the kernel tree, there is now Russia's Streebog that could be mainlined.

    The Streebog cryptographic hash was developed by Russia's controversial FSB federal security service and other Russian organizations. Streebog is a Russian national standard and a replacement to their GOST hash function. Streebog doesn't have as much controversy as NSA's Speck, but then again it's not as well known but there is are some hypothetical attacks and some papers have questioned some elements of the design. Streebog is considered to be a competitor to the SHA-3 standard from the NIST.

  • The Linux Kernel In 2018 Finally Deems USB 3.0 Ubiquitous Rather Than An Oddity

    The latest news in the "it's about darn time" section is the Linux kernel's default i386/x86_64 kernel configurations will finally ship with USB 3.0 support enabled, a.k.a. CONFIG_USB_XHCI_HCD.

    For many years now pretty much all Linux distribution vendor kernels have been shipping with CONFIG_USB_XHCI_HCD enabled either built-in or as a module... But built-in is pretty much the best to avoid potential issues at start-up time. As of this week, CONFIG_USB_XHCI_HCD=y is finally set for the default configurations on the x86/x86_64-based kernel builds should you be spinning up a defconfig kernel.

  • "Thermal Pressure" Kernel Feature Would Help Linux Performance When Running Hot

    Linaro engineer Thara Gopinath sent out an experimental set of kernel patches today that introduces the concept of "thermal pressure" to the Linux kernel for helping assist Linux performance when the processor cores are running hot.

    While the Linux CPU frequency scaling code already deals with the event of CPU core(s) overheating as to downclock/limit the frequency, the kernel's scheduler isn't currently aware of the CPU capacity restrictions put in place due to that thermal event.

  • Containers are Linux

    Linux is the core of today’s operating system open source software development, and containers are a core feature of Linux. Linux containers and the Kubernetes community supporting them enable agencies to quickly stand up, distribute and scale applications in the hybrid clouds supporting the IT architecture of today’s digitally transformed government.

    But agencies need more than the speed and flexibility of containers and the power of Kubernetes to take full advantage of today’s hybrid cloud environment. They need open source enterprise software with full lifecycle support and a full complement of hardware certifications to ensure portability across platforms.

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Introducing GNOME Usage’s Storage panel

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While I'm of two minds when it comes to smartphones and tablets, I have to admit they can be useful. Not just for keeping in touch with people or using the web but also to do some work when I'm away from my computer. For me, that work is writing—articles, blog posts, essays for my weekly letter, e-book chapters, and more. I've tried many (probably too many!) writing apps for Android over the years. Some of them were good. Others fell flat. Here are four of my favorite open source Android apps for writers. You might find them as useful as I do. Read more

How a trip to China inspired Endless OS and teaching kids to hack

Last year, I decided to try out Endless OS, a lightweight, Linux-based operating system developed to power inexpensive computers for developing markets. I wrote about installing and setting it up. Endless OS is unique because it uses a read-only root file system managed by OSTree and Flatpak, but the Endless company is unique for its approach to education. Late last year, Endless announced the Hack, a $299 laptop manufactured by Asus that encourages kids to code, and most recently the company revealed The Third Terminal, a group of video games designed to get kids coding while they're having fun. Since I'm so involved in teaching kids to code, I wanted to learn more about Endless Studios, the company behind Endless OS, The Third Terminal, The Endless Mission, a sandbox-style game created in partnership with E-Line Media, and other ventures targeted at expanding digital literacy and agency among children around the world. I reached out to Matt Dalio, Endless' founder, CEO, and chief of product and founder of the China Care Foundation, to ask about Endless and his charitable work supporting orphaned children with special needs in China. Read more