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Graphics/Benchmarks

AMD Threadripper 1950X on Linux

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Graphics/Benchmarks
Linux

Early Linux 4.14 Kernel Benchmarks Are Looking Promising

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Linux

I've begun running some Linux 4.14-rc1 kernel benchmarks and in some areas there appears to be nice gains with this in-development kernel.

If you are behind on your Phoronix reading and don't know about all of the changes coming for this next kernel release -- which will also be an LTS kernel -- see our Linux 4.14 feature overview that was published this past weekend.

Here are just some very early benchmarks while more are on the way.

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Kernel: Next Linux kernel 4.13 RC, the Linux Foundation and Graphics News

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Graphics/Benchmarks
Linux
  • Linus Torvalds Kicks Off Development of Linux Kernel 4.14, the Next LTS Release

    A day early than expected, Linux creator Linus Torvalds cautiously kicked off the development of the Linux 4.14 kernel series, which looks to be the next LTS (Long Term Support) branch, with the first Release Candidate (RC) milestone.

    That's right, two weeks after the release of Linux kernel 4.13, which is currently the most stable and advanced kernel series, being adopted by more and more GNU/Linux distributions each day, the first RC development snapshot of Linux kernel 4.14 is ready for public testing, officially closing the merge window. And it looks like some core new functionality will be implemented in this release.

  • Linux Foundation wants to promote sustainable open source development with new initiatives

    During last week’s Open Source Summit North America in Los Angeles, the Linux Foundation announced a series of projects designed to promote sustainability and growth in open source development.

    We wrote last week about their “Open Source Guides for the Enterprise,” which will see a series of guides by professionals from many different organizations released over the next few months.

    Following that, the foundation announced the Community Health Analytics for Open Source Software, or CHAOSS, project. With CHAOSS, the Linux Foundation wants to provide a platform for measuring and analyzing open source projects.

    The foundation also announced that it has granted a CII security badge to 100 projects through a voluntary process for open source projects to prove their security measures stack up professionally.

  • Intel ANV Lands New Vulkan 1.0.61 Extensions, Android Prep Support
  • AMDGPU Increasing Fragment Size For Performance

    Christian König of AMD yesterday sent out an AMDGPU kernel patch for boosting the default fragment size for GCN graphics cards pre-Vega.

    The patch is quite trivial and is for boosting the default fragment size from 64KB to 2MB, similar to the move made with the latest Vega GPUs. This change is for GFX6/GFX7/GFX8 graphics processors or basically all the GCN cards prior to Vega "GFX9".

Devices/Hardware: Embedded/Boards, CODESYS, and EPYC Linux Performance

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Linux
Hardware
  • Linux friendly IoT gateway runs on 3.5-inch Bay Trail SBC

    While the MB-80580 SBC lists SATA II, the gateway indicates SATA III. Also, the gateway datasheet notes that the RS232 ports can all be redirected to RS232/422/485. Software includes Windows IoT Core and Server, as well as Yocto, Ubuntu Snappy Core, and CentOS Linux distributions.

  • Rugged panel PC scales up to a 19-inch touchscreen

    The fanless, IP65-rated WinSystems “PPC65B-1x” panel PC runs Linux or Win 10 on a quad-core Atom E3845, and offers 10.4 to 19-inch resistive touchscreens.

  • CODESYS announces CODESYS-compatible SoftPLC for open Linux device platforms
  • EPYC Linux performance from AMD

    Phoronix have been hard at work testing out AMD's new server chip, specifically the 2.2/2.7/3.2GHz EPYC 7601 with 32 physical cores.  The frequency numbers now have a third member which is the top frequency all 32 cores can hit simultaneously, for this processor that would be 2.7GHz.  Benchmarking server processors is somewhat different from testing consumer CPUs, gaming performance is not as important as dealing with specific productivity applications.   Phoronix started their testing of EPYC, in both NUMA and non-NUMA configurations, comparing against several Xeon models and the performance delta is quite impressive, sometimes leaving even a system with dual Xeon Gold 6138's in the dust.  They also followed up with a look at how EPYC compares to Opteron, AMD's last server offerings.  The evolution is something to behold.

  • Opteron vs. EPYC Benchmarks & Performance-Per-Watt: How AMD Server Performance Evolved Over 10 Years

    By now you have likely seen our initial AMD EPYC 7601 Linux benchmarks. If you haven't, check them out, EPYC does really deliver on being competitive with current Intel hardware in the highly threaded space. If you have been curious to see some power numbers on EPYC, here they are from the Tyan Transport SX TN70A-B8026 2U server. Making things more interesting are some comparison benchmarks showing how the AMD EPYC performance compares to AMD Opteron processors from about ten years ago.

Games and Graphics: Chopper: Lethal darkness, Banshee, RadeonSI and Mir

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Gaming
  • Take out enemies from an attack helicopter using an FLIR camera in Chopper: Lethal darkness
  • Banshee Engine Planning For Linux Support In Q4

    Banshee has been a promising C++14-written, multi-threaded open-source game engine featuring Vulkan support. When the Vulkan support was added at the start of the year the plan was to see the Linux support added to the game engine in Q2. Well, it looks like in Q4 we could see the Linux client finally materialize.

    For those that have been wondering about the Linux support for Banshee, the engine's roadmap now reflects a plan to add Linux support in Q4. Meanwhile, the engine's 1.0 beta release is planned for early 2018.

  • RadeonSI OoO Rasterization Lands In Mesa 17.3 For RX Vega & VI GPUs

    The RadeonSI out-of-order rasterization support for RX Vega "GFX9" and Volcanic Islands GPUs has now landed in Mesa 17.3-devel Git.

    The out-of-order rasterization support should be able to boost the performance of these newer graphics cards in some Linux games. The support is enabled by default for now on Vega/VI GPUs while can be disabled with R600_DEBUG=nooutoforder.

  • Mir Now Has Initial Support For Wayland Clients

    Quietly being added to the Mir display stack a week ago was initial support for Wayland clients.

    Natively supporting Wayland clients within Mir has been a new goal for the remaining Mir developers at Canonical now that the original Mir plans were abandoned when Canonical did away with their grand vision for Unity 8. Mir is still being maintained at Canonical for some IoT use-cases while they hope some open-source projects will still decide to make use of their technology. With now at least having native Wayland client support, they stand some chance of Mir being useful to other groups.

Mesa 17.2.1 Released

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Linux RAID Performance On NVMe M.2 SSDs With EXT4, Btrfs, F2FS

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To little surprise, when starting things off with a SQLite database insertion test, EXT4 on RAID0 with the NVMe drives was the fastest but not much faster than the standalone MP500 on EXT4. F2FS was also competing very well with EXT4. Btrfs was the slowest file-system, due to its copy-on-write nature that by default it doesn't tend to be as performant with database type workloads. Interestingly, using F2FS with RAID1 caused a significant performance regression. At least in all the configurations except Btrfs, using the Corsair MP500 NVMe drives were a big upgrade over the Samsung 850 PRO.

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Graphics: Mesa 17.2.1 RC, X11 Turns 30, Radeon and Vulkan Updates

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  • Mesa 17.2.1 release candidate

    The candidate for the Mesa 17.2.1 is now available.

  • Mesa 17.2.1 Being Prepped For Release Next Week

    For those that have been waiting for the first point release of Mesa 17.2 before upgrading, the release candidate is out while the official build is slated for next week.

    Emil Velikov just announced the Mesa 17.2.1 Release Candidate with 53 new patches since the 17.2.0 release earlier this month.

  • Today Marks 30 Years Since The Release Of X11

    The X11 window system turns 30 years old today! X11 which still lives on through today via the X.Org Server on Linux, BSD, Solaris, and other operating systems is now three decades old.

    It was on this day in 1987 that Ralph Swick of MIT announced the X Window System Version 11 Release 1. As explained in the announcement compared to earlier versions of X, X11 offered "This release represents a major redesign and enhancement of X and signals it's graduation from the research community into the product engineering and development community. The X Window System version 11 is intended to be able to support virtually all known instances of raster display hardware and reasonable future hardware, including hardware supporting deep frame buffers, multiple colormaps and various levels of hardware graphics assist."

  • Radeon RX Vega OpenGL Linux Performance For September 2017

    It's been a couple weeks since running any Mesa Git benchmarks to show the latest state of the open-source Radeon Linux graphics stack, so here are some fresh numbers with the RX Vega 56 and RX Vega 64 along with other Radeon GPUs compared to the NVIDIA Linux performance.

  • R600 Gallium3D To End Code Sharing With RadeonSI Driver

    While the R600g and RadeonSI drivers are two distinct Gallium3D drivers for R600 (HD 2000) through Northern Islands (HD 6000) and GCN and newer, respectively, they have up until now shared some code via gallium/radeon. But that will now be ending.

    Marek Olšák is ending the code sharing between R600 and RadeonSI with the R600g driver now importing its own current state of the previously-shared Radeon Gallium code. This is common code pertaining to Gallium3D pipe setup, video decoding, command submission, and other items that could be shared between R600g and RadeonSI.

  • Vulkan 1.0.61 Introduces Four New Extensions
  • There Are Now 1,400 Vulkan Projects On GitHub

    The milestone was breached today of having 1,400 projects on GitHub referencing the Vulkan graphics API.

    It was just this April when there were 1,000 Vulkan projects on GitHub, in July when reaching 1,200 projects, and now on 15 September is crossing the 1,400th project.

Initial Benchmarks Of The AMD EPYC 7601 On Ubuntu Linux

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Last week we received the AMD EPYC 7601 32 core / 64 thread processor for testing at Phoronix with the Tyan Transport SX TN70A-B8026 2U server. Since then I've had the pleasure of putting this Zen server processor through its paces. I am still early in the testing process with many more interesting benchmarks to come, but today are some initial numbers of the AMD EPYC 7601 compared to various Intel Xeon CPUs while running Ubuntu Linux.

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Linux: Jim Zemlin's Hypocrisy, Open Source Summit 2017 Roundup, AMD Graphics and CPU Failures/Bugs

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Hardware
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Software: DNS Checkers, Alternatives to Adobe Software, Fake Hollywood Hacker Terminal and More

KDE and GNOME: Kubuntu Site, Marble Maps, Kube in Randa, and UX in GNOME

  • Call for design: Artful Banner for Kubuntu.org website
    Kubuntu 17.10 — code-named Artful Aardvark — will be released on October 19th, 2017. We need a new banner for the website, and invite artists and designers to submit designs to us based on the Plasma wallpaper and perhaps the mascot design.
  • Randa 2017 Report – Marble Maps
    Just came back home yesterday from Randa Meetings 2017. This year, even though my major motive for the sprint was to use Qt 5.8’s Qt Speech module instead of custom Java for text-to-speech during navigation, that could not be achieved because of a bug which made the routes not appear in the app in the first place. And this bug is reproducible both by using latest code, and old-enough code, and is even there in the prod app in the Google Play Store itself. So, although most of my time had gone in deep-diving on the issue, unfortunately I was not able to find the root-cause to it eventually. I will need to pick up on that in the coming weeks again when I get time, to get it fixed.
  • Kube in Randa
    I’ve spent the last few days with fellow KDE hackers in beautiful Randa in the Swiss Mountains. It’s an annual event that focuses on a specific topic every year, and this time accessibility was up, so Michael and me made our way up here to improve Kube in that direction (and to enjoy the scenic surroundings of course).
  • Usability testing for early-stage software prototypes
    In this article, Ciarrai Cunneen and I describe how to do a paper-based usability test, using an early redesign of the GNOME Settings app as an example. The updated Settings features in GNOME 3.26, released on September 13. When writing open source software, we often obsess about making our logic elegant and concise, coming up with clever ways to execute tasks and demonstrate ideas. But we sometimes forget a key fact: Software is not useful if it is not easy to use. To make sure our programs can be used by our intended audience, we need usability testing. Usability is basically asking the question, "Can people easily use this thing?" or "Can real people use the software to do real tasks in a reasonable amount of time?" Usability is crucial to the creative process of building anything user-based. If real people can't use our software, then all the hard work of creating it is pointless. [...] In early 2016, GNOME decided to make a major UI update to its Settings application. This visual refresh shifts from an icon-based menu to drop-down lists and adds important changes to several individual Settings panels. The GNOME design team wanted to test these early-stage design changes to see how easily real people could navigate the new GNOME Settings application. Previously, GNOME relied on traditional usability tests, where users explore the software's UI directly. But this wouldn't work, since the software updates hadn't been completed.

FSF, GNU and FSFE

  • LibrePlanet 2018: Let's talk about Freedom. Embedded.
    The call for sessions is open now, until November 2nd, 2017. General registration and exhibitor and sponsor registration are also open. Pre-order a LibrePlanet 10th anniversary t-shirt when you register to attend! Do you want to discuss or teach others about a topic relevant to the free software community? You've got until Thursday, November 2nd, 2017 at 10:00 EDT (14:00 UTC) to submit your session proposals. LibrePlanet is an annual conference for free software enthusiasts and everyone who cares about the intersection of technology and social justice. For the past nine years, LibrePlanet has brought together free software developers, policy experts, activists, hackers, students, and people who are at the beginning of their free software journeys. LibrePlanet 2018 will feature programming for all ages and experience levels.
  • LibrePlanet free software conference celebrates 10th anniversary, CFP and registration open now
    The call for proposals is open now, until November 2, 2017. General registration and exhibitor and sponsor registration are also open. LibrePlanet is an annual conference for free software enthusiasts and anyone who cares about the intersection of technology and social justice. For the past nine years, LibrePlanet has brought together free software developers, policy experts, activists, hackers, students, and people who are at the beginning of their free software journeys. LibrePlanet 2018 will feature programming for all ages and experience levels.
  • dot-zed extractor
  • FSFE Newsletter - September 2017

    To push our demand, the FSFE launched a new campaign last week: "Public Money Public Code". The campaign explains the benefits of releasing publicly funded Software under free licences with a short inspiring video and an open letter to sign. Furthermore, the campaign and the open letter will be used in the coming months until the European Parliament election in 2019 to highlight good and bad examples of publicly funded software development and its potential reuse.

  • Free Software Foundation Europe Leads Call For Taxpayer-Funded Software To Be Licensed For Free Re-use
    Considered objectively, it's hard to think of any good reasons why code that is paid for by the public should not be released publicly as a matter of course. The good news is that this "public money, public code" argument is precisely the approach that open access advocates have used with considerable success in the field of academic publishing, so there's hope it might gain some traction in the world of software too.

Security: WordPress 4.8.2, CCleaner 5.33, Apache Patch and Cryptocurrencies

  • WordPress 4.8.2 Security and Maintenance Release
    WordPress 4.8.2 is now available. This is a security release for all previous versions and we strongly encourage you to update your sites immediately.
  • Attack on CCleaner Highlights the Importance of Securing Downloads and Maintaining User Trust
    Some of the most worrying kinds of attacks are ones that exploit users’ trust in the systems and softwares they use every day. Yesterday, Cisco’s Talos security team uncovered just that kind of attack in the computer cleanup software CCleaner. Download servers at Avast, the company that owns CCleaner, had been compromised to distribute malware inside CCleaner 5.33 updates for at least a month. Avast estimates that over 2 million users downloaded the affected update. Even worse, CCleaner’s popularity with journalists and human rights activists means that particularly vulnerable users are almost certainly among that number. Avast has advised CCleaner Windows users to update their software immediately. This is often called a “supply chain” attack, referring to all the steps software takes to get from its developers to its users. As more and more users get better at bread-and-butter personal security like enabling two-factor authentication and detecting phishing, malicious hackers are forced to stop targeting users and move “up” the supply chain to the companies and developers that make software. This means that developers need to get in the practice of “distrusting” their own infrastructure to ensure safer software releases with reproducible builds, allowing third parties to double-check whether released binary and source packages correspond. The goal should be to secure internal development and release infrastructure to that point that no hijacking, even from a malicious actor inside the company, can slip through unnoticed.
  • Apache bug leaks contents of server memory for all to see—Patch now
    There's a bug in the widely used Apache Web Server that causes servers to leak pieces of arbitrary memory in a way that could expose passwords or other secrets, a freelance journalist has disclosed. The vulnerability can be triggered by querying a server with what's known as an OPTIONS request. Like the better-known GET and POST requests, OPTIONS is a type of HTTP method that allows users to determine which HTTP requests are supported by the server. Normally, a server will respond with GET, POST, OPTIONS, and any other supported methods. Under certain conditions, however, responses from Apache Web Server include the data stored in computer memory. Patches are available here and here.
  • The Pirate Bay Takes Heat for Testing Monero Mining
    Cryptocurrencies usually are mined with CPU power initially, she told LinuxInsider. Users then find ways to speed up the hashing before going to GPU. They build specialized hardware and field programmable gate array (FPGA) chips to carry out the hashing function in order to mine much faster. [...] The notion that The Pirate Bay effectively would borrow resources from its own users is not the problem, suggested Jessica Groopman, principal analyst at Tractica.