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Linux on your laptop: A closer look at EFI boot options

For some time now I have gotten a slow but steady volume of requests that I write about UEFI firmware and EFI boot relative to installing and maintaining Linux. As a result of a casual comment I made in a recent post about installing Linux on a new laptop, the volume has gone up considerably. So in this post I will review and explain some of what I consider to be the most important points about UEFI firmware and Linux systems. I intend for this to be a relatively short post, but once I get started you never know... so you might want to get a cup of coffee before starting to read. First, the specific aspect of UEFI firmware that I am concerned with here is the boot sequence, and how to use it with Linux. There is a lot more to UEFI (EFI) than that, but I will not be addressing any of that here. Read more

Programming: PyCharm, PyCon, GitLab and Parallelised Execution

  • PyCharm 2019.2.1

    PyCharm 2019.2.1 is available now!

  • Proud to be sponsoring PyCon 2020

    I’m delighted to announce that Weekly Python Exercise is a gold sponsor of PyCon 2020, to be held in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. PyCon is the largest Python conference in the world, and is both fun and interesting for Python developers of all experience levels and backgrounds.

  • GitLab 12.2 arrives with faster pipelines & design management strategy

    The monthly GitLab update has arrived, right on time and with new features and capabilities. Take a look inside and see some of the newest highlights for version 12.2. This month introduces faster, more efficient pipelines, cross project merge request dependencies, performance upgrades, a new Design Management, and a few more goodies. The latest version of GitLab is right on time, with new updates, new features for members, and more. Welcome to version 12.2. New to GitLab and unsure of how it stacks up against other commonly used tools? Check out the comparison between GitLab and the rest of the DevOps tools landscape to see how it has grown and how it compares to similar tools. Potentially, it could replace certain tool functionalities included in Jenkins, Docker Hub, GitHub, and more.

  • Parallel CPU Microcode Updates Being Restored To Help Large Core Count Servers

    Following Spectre/Meltdown, the Linux CPU microcode updating was made serial while now a new patch pending for the Linux kernel would restore the behavior to be parallelized in order to speed-up the process for large core count servers. Handling parallel CPU microcode updates can make a meaningful difference on today's large core count systems. An Oracle engineer has volleyed a patch from an Intel developer in trying to get the code into the mainline kernel.

Clear Linux launches Deep Learning Reference Stack 4.0 that enhances AI performance

With the growing number of AI-based developers, Clear Linux Project shifts its focus towards Deep Learning as it releases Deep Learning Reference Stack 4.0. The brains behind Clear Linux Project, namely Intel, acknowledges the significance of Artificial Intelligence and how rapidly it has been evolving as of late. Accordingly, the company vows to accelerate enterprise and ecosystem development to take DL (Deep Learning) workloads to the next level. As a part of this mission, Intel introduced an integrated Deep Learning Reference Stack, whose new version arrived earlier this week. This stack is mainly aimed at the Deep Learning facet of Artificial Intelligence and performs well on the Intel® Xeon® Scalable series of processors. Read more

Graphics: Intel, NVIDIA, AMDGPU

  • Intel Submits Final Batch Of Graphics Driver Changes For Linux 5.4 - Growing Tiger Lake

    After having been submitting various feature updates to DRM-Next the past few weeks of new graphics driver feature code to introduce in Linux 5.4, a final pull request was sent in today with the remaining feature work slated for this next version of the Linux kernel. As added earlier to Linux 5.4, the big focus at this stage for the open-source Intel Linux developers is on bringing up the "Gen 12" graphics support for Tiger Lake. With the Icelake / Gen 11 graphics support now in good shape, the developers have already been busy plumbing Gen 12 graphics that are at least a year out from being available through retail channels.

  • Nouveau's Changes Sent Out For Linux 5.4 In Fixing Up The Open-Source NVIDIA Support

    While NVIDIA recently began publishing more hardware documentation, don't expect it to make an immediate difference in the quality of the open-source NVIDIA "Nouveau" driver. Today the pull request was sent to DRM-Next of the Nouveau kernel driver changes for the upcoming Linux 5.4 cycle and there isn't much to get excited about. Nouveau DRM maintainer Ben Skeggs of Red Hat sent in the pull request this morning, which mostly consists of work that missed out on the current Linux 5.3 cycle when he sent in that earlier pull request too late. This time the pull request is on-time and has the improvements to color management, some code for acknowledging when any PCIe power cables are not connected, and different fixes. But for end-users, nothing to get excited about unless any of the bug fixes had affected problems you experienced.

  • AMDGPU To Allow Memory Re-Clocking Soon For Multi-Monitor Setups

    Currently the AMDGPU Linux kernel driver doesn't automatically adjust the video memory clock speeds when running a multi-monitor setup since it's more complicated to gracefully handle when scanning out to two or more displays. But a set of currently experimental patches will allow memory clock switching support on multi-monitor setups with the AMDGPU DC code.