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Graphics Stack: VK9, Egmde, Vulkan, NVIDIA and AMD

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  • VK9 Continues Persevering With Direct3D 9 Over Vulkan

    The VK9 project began more than one year ago as an attempt to implement the Direct3D 9 API atop the modern Vulkan API. The project continues progressing and has this weekend hit its 25th milestone.

  • Egmde: Wayland reboot

    Some time ago I started writing some articles about how easy it is to write a shell based on MirAL. With subsequent events that work has been neglected. But with the recent release of MirAL 2.0 in Mir 0.31 I decided to update the code that accompanied these articles.

  • EGMDE: The Example Mir Desktop Environment

    We've known that Mir developers have been trying to get a Mir example desktop session going in time for Ubuntu 18.04. More details on that are now coming to light as we meet the EGMDE desktop environment.

    Canonical's Alan Griffiths has been working on EGMDE to demonstrate the ease of being able to write a desktop shell based on MirAL, Mir's abstraction layer. EGMDE is the renewed effort based on Mir 0.31 and MirAL 2.0. EGMDE is short for the Example Mir Desktop Environment.

  • A Proof-of-Concept Vulkan Window Compositor Is In the Works

    With Vulkan 1.1 it should be possible to write a pure Vulkan Wayland compositor while a Phoronix reader has tipped us off to a developer starting work on a proof-of-concept Vulkan window compositor.

    The simply named VulkanCompositor is working on implementing a window compositor simply using Vulkan and GLFW, though at least for now isn't yet implementing Wayland. The project has just begun but is seeing work on GitHub by developer Ilya Glushchenko.

  • NVIDIA 387.42.06 Linux Vulkan Driver Released With New Extensions

    NVIDIA on Friday released an updated Vulkan driver for Windows and Linux with their latest feature work.

    The NVIDIA 387.42.06 driver for Linux and 389.20 driver for Windows are now the company's latest developer drivers for those wanting to make use of the latest Vulkan functionality on Quadro/GeForce/Titan graphics hardware.

  • Broadcom VC5 DRM Driver Might Make Use Of AMDGPU's Scheduler

    Eric Anholt of Broadcom is looking at making use of the AMDGPU DRM scheduler within the VC5 direct rendering manager driver.

    In Linux 4.16, the AMDGPU scheduler code was punted off into a common area of the DRM subsystem due to interest stemming from the Etnaviv team in making use of this "marvelous" scheduler in their own driver. With Linux 4.17, Etnaviv is indeed making use of the AMDGPU scheduler that also is now known as just "drm/scheduler" after being generalized for use by other DRM drivers.

More Windows Server vs. Linux Benchmark Tests With Spectre/Meltdown Mitigations

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Last week I posted an article looking at the Relative Spectre/Meltdown Mitigation Costs On Windows vs. Linux. Today from a different system and using Windows Server 2016 rather than Windows 10 are some fresh benchmarks doing a similar comparison with different hardware and also looking at the Spectre and Meltdown mitigation performance impact again on Ubuntu 18.04 LTS and Clear Linux.

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Linux Kernel: Linux 4.16, Linux 4.17, Mir, mesa and LF Working for AT&T

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  • Some Of The Best Additions In Linux 4.16

    The Linux 4.16 kernel is hopefully being released this Sunday, marking the end to another busy kernel development cycle. We have already written dozens of articles about changes to be found with Linux 4.16 and benchmarks, while here is a quick recap of what makes Linux 4.16 special.

  • Seven Reasons To Already Get Excited For Linux 4.17, Especially For AMD/Radeon Users
  • Mir 0.31.1 Released With Various Wayland Fixes

    Another minor update to Mir has arrived ahead of next month's Ubuntu 18.04 LTS "Bionic Beaver" release.

    Mir 0.31.1 takes care of some warnings emitted now by GCC 8, a few minor fixes, and then is mostly focused on Wayland fixes.

  • More Intel OpenGL 4.6 SPIR-V Code Lands In Mesa 18.1 Git

    It looks like we're getting quite close to finally having OpenGL 4.6 in mainline Mesa.

    Igalia developers that have been assisting the Intel OTC crew on OpenGL 4.6 support for the i965 GL driver have landed their latest round of SPIR-V patches. Solely left blocking OpenGL 4.6 for Intel (and RadeonSI) has been the ARB_gl_spirv / ARB_spirv_extensions OpenGL extensions for allowing the SPIR-V IR to be ingested by the OpenGL drivers for greater cross-operability with Vulkan. These latest patches now in Mesa 18.1-devel are landing i965 SPIR-V bits.

  • LF Networking Gets Ambitious About Open Harmonization

    Building on significant momentum in the networking space, the Linux Foundation's networking arm is getting even more ambitious, announcing a move to harmonize its open source networking efforts with those of adjacent ecosystems including containers and cloud-native efforts, edge computing, network operating systems for white boxes and AI/deep learning.

    The LF Networking Fund (LFN) today made a series of announcements including the launch of DANOS, an open network operating system for white boxes and switches that brings together existing projects such as Free Range Routing and dNOS, and creates an "uber" operating system for white boxes that should speed their commercialization, said Arpit Joshipura, general manager of networking for the Linux Foundation.

  • AT&T to Deploy More than 60,000 White Box Routers

    AT&T on Sunday detailed its plans to use open hardware designs as the carrier virtualizes its network on the road to 5G.

    The company said it will deploy more than 60,000 “white box” routers in cell towers across the U.S. over the next several years — a transition from traditional proprietary routers to open hardware that can be upgraded more quickly.

    “White box represents a radical realignment of the traditional service provider model,” said Andre Fuetsch, CTO and president of AT&T Labs, in a statement. “We’re no longer constrained by the capabilities of proprietary silicon and feature roadmaps of traditional vendors. We’re writing open hardware specifications for these machines, and developing the open source software that powers these boxes.”

Linux RAID Performance On Dual NVMe SSDs

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Here are our latest Linux RAID benchmarks using the very new Linux 4.16 kernel while using two high-end Samsung 960 EVO 500GB NVMe solid-state drives with Ubuntu 18.04 LTS. Using MDADM Linux soft RAID were EXT4, F2FS, and XFS while Btrfs RAID0/RAID1 was also tested using that file-system's integrated/native RAID capabilities.

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Benchmarks Of Linux 4.14 On The Raspberry Pi

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This week Raspbian OS, the official Debian-based operating system of the Raspberry Pi, finally upgraded to the Linux 4.14 LTS kernel. Considering that Raspbian was previously on Linux 4.9, it's quite the kernel upgrade, and I decided to run some before/after benchmarks.

Going from Linux 4.9 to 4.14 means the Raspbian maintainers need to carry less out-of-tree patches for the Raspberry Pi since in this timeframe more of their work has been upstreamed to the Linux kernel. Plus there's been a whole array of improvements to the mainline Linux kernel in this timeframe. Some users have been hopeful of performance improvements being part of that, so I decided to run some improvements.

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A Look At Ubuntu 10.04 To Ubuntu 18.04 Linux Performance

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With the Ubuntu 18.04 "Bionic Beaver" release fast approaching and it being the latest Long-Term Support release, the latest benchmarking at Phoronix has been looking at how the Ubuntu LTS performance has evolved going as far back as the Ubuntu 10.04.0 LTS "Lucid Lynx" release. On three systems where supported Ubuntu 10.04 / 12.04 / 14.04 / 16.04 / 18.04 were tested each time.

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Graphics: DRM-Next, AMDVLK, RADV, X.Org Server

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  • The Big DRM Pull Request For Linux 4.17: 144,461 Insertions, 38,059 Deletions

    While the Linux 4.16.0 kernel hasn't even been released yet, Direct Rendering Manager subsystem maintainer David Airlie has already sent in his big feature pull request for Linux 4.17 since he will be going on holidays the next few weeks.

    As we've been covering the past few weeks, there are many changes that accumulated in the DRM-Next tree for Linux 4.17 that makes it quite big with 144k lines of new code while seeing just 38k lines of code removed, or a net addition to the kernel of more than one hundred thousand lines of code this time around... But fortunately a good chunk of that is the auto-generated header files for AMD Vega 12 GPU support.

  • AMDVLK Updated With Wayland Support, Many Other Fixes & Improvements

    With it having been two weeks since AMD last updated their PAL/AMDVLK source tree, today's update contains a fair amount of changes to this official open-source AMD Radeon Vulkan Linux driver.

    Most notable from this latest whopping of +10,184 lines of new code (and 8,990 deletions) is Wayland support! AMDVLK should now be able to work with Vulkan on native Wayland environments. AMDVLK needed a fair amount of additions for supporting surfaces on Wayland and its window management/integration differences.

  • RADV In Mesa 18.1 Git Receiving New Vulkan Extension Work

    In addition to receiving Vega 12 support in the past few hours, the RADV Vulkan driver living within Mesa has landed the latest extension work.

    Valve open-source Linux driver developer Samuel Pitoiset has merged VK_EXT_sampler_filter_minmax support. That extension was added back during Vulkan 1.0.53. I'm not aware of any Vulkan game/program currently requiring VK_EXT_sampler_filter_minmax so it will be interesting to see if it wiring it up was done simply for scratching another item off the list or will be a requirement for any forthcoming Linux games. This extension is just enabled for GCN 1.1 Sea Islands and newer with GCN 1.0 behavior said to be buggy.

  • X.Org Server 1.20 RC2 Released With DRI3 v1.2, Per-Window Flipping For XWayland

    Adam Jackson at Red Hat has announced the second release candidate to the long-in-development X.Org Server 1.20.

    Since the RC1 release at the end of February, X.Org Server 1.20 has continued to receive new feature work including DRI3 v1.2 support and hitting the code-base today was the per-window flipping in the Present extension with XWayland.

    Both are exciting features, particularly the latter. The DRI3 1.2 support is wired through but currently requires a debug option be set in the xorg.conf for activating the support with the xf86-video-modesetting DDX driver.

Graphics: NVIDIA, AMD, Vulkan, Intel and More

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  • NVIDIA 390.48 Linux Driver Released With GV100 & Tesla V100 Support

    NVIDIA today released the 390.48 graphics driver for Linux, FreeBSD, and Solaris systems.

    Most notable to the NVIDIA 390.48 driver is supporting the latest Volta-based workstation graphics cards of the new Quadro GV100 as well as the Tesla V100-SXM2-32GB / V100-PCIE-32GB / V100-DGXS-32GB.

  • AMD Vega 12 GPU Support Lands In Mesa 18.1-devel

    With support for the unreleased "Vega 12" AMD GPU seeing its kernel-side support coming with Linux 4.17, AMD's Marek Olšák has landed support for this scarcely detailed GPU now in their user-space OpenGL driver.

    The patch is quite small for adding the Vega 12 support to RadeonSI Gallium3D with the bulk of the enablement needed in the AMDGPU kernel driver. As tiny as the patch is, it's currently not marked for back-porting into Mesa 18.0 stable series.

  • Talvos: A SPIR-V Interpreter & Vulkan Device Emulator For Debugging

    Another interesting Vulkan open-source project worthy of a shout-out is Talvos, a dynamic analysis framework and debugger for Vulkan and SPIR-V programs.

    Talvos consists of a SPIR-V interpreter and Vulkan device emulator in an effort to assist in debugging Vulkan programs without needing source-level modifications as well as in debugging the SPIR-V intermediate representation.

  • New P-State Patches Could Boost Intel Graphics Performance Under Some Conditions

    Francisco Jerez of Intel's open-source Linux graphics driver team has posted not some new DRM driver patches today but rather CPUFreq/P-State driver patches that could really help Intel integrated graphics performance under some conditions and especially on the lower-power Intel platforms.

  • While Still Waiting For Broadcom VideoCore 5 To Surface, There Appears To Be VC6

    The VC5 open-source Linux graphics driver stack has been under heavy development now the past nearly year while not yet seeing any major ARM SBCs or other products making use of this Broadcom VideoCore V (VC5) 3D hardware, which now supports OpenCL and Vulkan. While many are holding out hopes for eventually seeing a next-gen Raspberry Pi with this beefed up VideoCore, it appears there is already a VC6 in the works too.

    We haven't heard anything officially yet on VideoCore VI (VC6) but it does appear to be in the works and is along far enough where there is some driver activity happening.

Windows 10 vs. Windows WSL vs. Linux - Ubuntu / openSUSE / Debian / Clear Linux

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With Debian having been added to the Microsoft Store earlier this month for running Debian 9 on Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL) plus in wanting to do some fresh updates prior to Microsoft shipping their Spring Creators Update, here are some fresh benchmarks of various Linux distributions and their raw performance, the current major Linux distributions available on WSL, and then also the native Windows 10 performance in the various supported tests.

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Mesa 18.0.0 Released (Says "17.4.0" Due to Bug)

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  • Mesa 17.4.0 Release Notes

    Mesa 17.4.0 is a new development release. People who are concerned with stability and reliability should stick with a previous release or wait for Mesa 17.4.1.

    Mesa 17.4.0 implements the OpenGL 4.5 API, but the version reported by glGetString(GL_VERSION) or glGetIntegerv(GL_MAJOR_VERSION) / glGetIntegerv(GL_MINOR_VERSION) depends on the particular driver being used. Some drivers don't support all the features required in OpenGL 4.5. OpenGL 4.5 is only available if requested at context creation because compatibility contexts are not supported.

  • mesa 18.0.0
  • Mesa 18.0 released, further advancing Linux graphics drivers

    Mesa 18.0 has been officially released today after a bit of a wait, further advancing Linux graphics drivers.

    As usual, if you concerned about stability, the Mesa developers do suggest waiting for the first point release 18.0.1 for any pressing issues to get fixed up. The first point release should be due in early April, with a second due later that month as well.

  • Mesa 18.0 Officially Released With Plenty Of OpenGL & Vulkan Improvements

    Mesa 18.0 managed to meet its Q1'2018 release target by just a couple of days... After being delayed a month and a half, Mesa 18.0.0 is now the latest stable version of this user-space driver stack most commonly associated with its OpenGL and Vulkan implementations.

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More in Tux Machines

Smallest RK3399 hacker board yet ships at $129 with 4GB DDR4

FriendlyElec has launched a 100 x 64mm, $129 “NanoPC-T4” SBC that runs Android or Linux on a Rockchip RK3399 with 4G DDR4, native GbE, WiFi-ac, DP, HDMI 2.0, 0 to 80℃ support, and M.2 and 40-pin expansion. FriendlyElec has released its most powerful and priciest hacker board to date, which it promotes as being the smallest RK3399-based SBC on the market. The 100 x 64mm NanoPC-T4 opens with a $129 discount price with the default 4GB DDR4 and 16GB eMMC. Although that will likely rise in the coming months, it’s still priced in the middle range of open spec RK3399 SBCs. Read more

today's leftovers

  • How to dual-boot Linux and Windows
    Even though Linux is a great operating system with widespread hardware and software support, the reality is that sometimes you have to use Windows, perhaps due to key apps that won't run under Linux. Thankfully, dual-booting Windows and Linux is very straightforward—and I'll show you how to set it up, with Windows 10 and Ubuntu 18.04, in this article. Before you get started, make sure you've backed up your computer. Although the dual-boot setup process is not very involved, accidents can still happen. So take the time to back up your important files in case chaos theory comes into play. In addition to backing up your files, consider taking an image backup of the disk as well, though that's not required and can be a more advanced process.
  • Weather Forecasting Gets A Big Lift In Japan
    This is a lot more compute capacity than JMA has had available to do generic weather forecasting as well as do predictions for typhoons, tsunamis, earthquakes, and volcanic eruptions – the weather forecasting alone is predicted to run 10X faster, according to Cray.
  • Bitwarden Password Manager Adds Command Line Vault
    Bitwarden, the secure, open source password manager we talked about recently, added a command line tool to its list of apps you can use to access your passwords. Bitwarden CLI is currently in public beta testing, and according to its documentation, it includes all the features available in other Bitwarden client applications, like the desktop or browser extension.
  • GSoC’18 Week 1
    The first week of the coding period was great and I got to learn a lot of new things. My mentors help me on every stage and the work is going on as planne [...] Improvement in the overall UI is still in progress. Other than this, I have been working on refactoring the current code for this activity and breaking the whole code into various elements. For the next week, my main task is to complete the overall UI of this activity and add more geometries for drawing.
  • Time to Test Plasma 5.13 Beta
    The forthcoming new release of Plasma 5.13 will have some lovely new features such as rewritten System Settings pages and Plasma Browser Integration. But we need testers. Incase you missed it the Plasma 5.13 release announce has a rundown of the main features. If you are an auditory learner you can listen to the Late Night Linux Extra podcast where Jonathan “great communicator” Riddell talks about the recent sprint and the release.
  • GSoC students are already hacking!
    We always enjoy that new people join openSUSE community and help them in their first steps. Because of that, openSUSE participates again in GSoC, an international program in which stipends are awarded to students who hack on open source projects during the summer. We are really excited to announce that this year four students will learn about open source development while hacking on openSUSE projects. The coding period started last week, so our students are already busy hacking and they have written some nice articles about their projects. ;)
  • CryptoFest a openSUSE Conference již tento víkend v Praze
  • openSUSE Conference a CryptoFest 2018
  • Aaeon reveals two rugged, Linux-ready embedded PCs
    Aaeon unveiled two Linux-friendly embedded systems: an “AIOT-IP6801” gateway equipped with an Apollo Lake-based UP Squared SBC with WiFi and LoRa, and a “Boxer-8120AI” mini-PC with an Nvidia Jetson TX2 module and 4x GbE ports. Aaeon announced that three of its Linux-ready embedded systems have won Computex d&j awards, including two previously unannounced models: an Intel Apollo Lake based AIOT-IP6801 gateway based on Aaeon’s community-backed UP Squared board, as well as a Boxer-8120AI embedded computer built around an Arm-based Jetson TX2 module.
  • Last Call for Purism's Librem 5 Dev Kits, Git Protocol Version 2 Released, LXQt Version 0.13.0 Now Available and More
    Purism announces last call for its Librem 5 dev kits. If you're interested in the hardware that will be the platform for the Librem 5 privacy-focused phones, place your order by June 1, 2018. The dev kit is $399, and it includes "screen, touchscreen, development mainboard, cabling, power supply and various sensors (free worldwide shipping)".

Programming: GNU Parallel, Rust, Go

OSS Leftovers

  • Openlab: what it is and why it matters
    Six months on from its announcement at Openstack Summit Sydney in late 2017, community testing project OpenLab is in full swing. OpenLab was initially formed by Intel, Huawei and the OpenStack foundation as a community-led project for improving SDK support and also introducing other platforms like Kubernetes and Cloud Foundry to the Openstack environment. Ultimately the idea is to improve usability in hybrid and multi-cloud environments. Melvin Hillsman sits on the governance board along with Dr Yih Leong Sun of Intel and Chris Hoge from the Foundation. Hillsman moved from Rackspace to Huawei to work specifically on the project. "The reason we think Openlab is important is, basically, Openstack for some time has been very specific about testing and integration for Openstack services, focusing only on the projects started at Openstack," Hillsman tellsComputerworld UK at the Openstack Vancouver Summit. "It's been working very well, it's a robust system. But for me as a person in the user community - my getting involved in Openstack was more on the operator-user side.
  • Open source innovation tips for the customer-driven economy
    New technologies, ranging from big data and blockchain to 3D printing, are giving rise to new opportunities and challenges for companies today. To stay competitive, organizations need to become more intelligent, customer-centric, and increasingly agile to cope with changing business demands. The worry for many companies which are trying to innovate is that while the speed and scope of applications are expanding rapidly, the variety and complexity of technology is increasing simultaneously, putting pressure on their IT infrastructure. Speaking at the SUSE Expert Days 2018 held in Singapore recently, Dr Gerald Pfeifer, VP of Products and Technology Program, SUSE, told attendees that these prevailing trends have come together to make Open Source the primary engine for business innovation.
  • Qualcomm is able to release the Snapdragon 845 source code in 6 weeks
    Qualcomm‘s latest high-end system-on-chip, the Qualcomm Snapdragon 845, was announced at the Snapdragon Tech Summit back in December. The chipset offers 4 Kryo 385 (A75 “performance”) and 4 Kryo 385 (A55 “efficiency”) CPU cores, the latest Adreno 630 GPU, the Spectra 280 ISP, the Hexagon 685 DSP, the Snapdragon X20 LTE modem, and a new Secure Processing Unit (SPU). The Snapdragon 845 SoC is a powerhouse in benchmarks and it is already available in devices like the Samsung Galaxy S9/S9+, Xiaomi Mi Mix 2S, and the OnePlus 6. Developers on our forums have been itching to get their hands on a device with Qualcomm’s latest and greatest, but there’s just one thing that has made some developers worry about the future of development on the platform: The lack of publicly available source code for the kernel, HALs, framework branches, and more on the CodeAurora Forums.
  • Kata Containers 1.0 Released, Formerly Intel Clear Containers
    Back in December was the announcement of Intel's Clear Containers being spun into a new project called Kata Containers in collaboration with other organizations. Kata Containers has now reached their version 1.0 milestone. Kata Containers 1.0 is now available for this container technology designed for offering a secure and scalable container experience built atop Intel VT technology.
  • What's new in OpenStack?
    As OpenStack Foundation Chief Operating Officer Mark Collier referenced in his opening keynote, the uses which OpenStack is seeing today expand far beyond what most who were involved in the early days of the project could have ever imagined. While OpenStack started out primarily in the traditional data center and found many large-scale users, particularly in the telecommunications industry, who were using it to manage huge installations of traditional x86 server hardware, the flexibility of OpenStack has today allowed it to thrive in many other environments and use cases. Today, we see OpenStack powering everything from academic and research projects to media and gaming services, from online retail and e-commerce to manufacturing and industrial applications, and from finance to healthcare. OpenStack is found in all of these different places not just because it is cheaper than using the public cloud, not just because it makes compliance with various regulations easier, but because its open source code makes it flexible to all sort of different situations.
  • Should Red Hat Buy or Build a Database?
    For a decade, at least, observers of the company have speculated about whether Red Hat would or should enter the database market. The primary argument, one made in this space eight years ago, has historically been that Red Hat is de facto leaving potential dollars on the table by limiting itself to operating platform and immediately adjacent markets. In a more recent piece, analyst Krishnan Subramanian adds that Red Hat is at risk because databases represent a control point, one that the company is effectively ceding to competitors such as AWS or Microsoft.
  • Tidelift Raises $15M Series A From General Catalyst, Foundry, & Others
    This morning Tidelift, a startup focused on helping developers work with open source technology, announced that it has closed a $15 million Series A round of funding co-led by General Catalyst, Foundry, and Matthew Szulik, the former CEO of Red Hat, a public open source-centered technology company. The subscription-powered startup has an interesting business model which we’ll dive into shortly, but it’s worth noting that the open source space as a whole is quite active. It’s something that Crunchbase News covered last year, describing how startups working with open source software have enjoyed a dramatic rise in investor interest. That puts Tidelift in the midst of a trend.
  • Tidelift lands $15M to deliver professional open-source support
    Tidelift Inc. is raising $15 million as it looks to boost its unique open-source software model that sees companies pay for professional support of their favorite projects, allowing those that maintain them to get compensated too. The Series A round was led by the investment firms General Catalyst and Foundry Group, as well as former Red Hat Inc. Chairman and Chief Executive Matthew Szulik. The company was able to attract the investment after coming up with a novel idea for maintaining the most popular open-source software projects in a way that benefits both the users and those who help to create them. It works like this: Companies pay a subscription fee that entitles them to professional-grade support, similar to the kind of commercial subscriptions offered by firms such as Red Hat, Cloudera Inc. and Docker Inc. A part of these fees are then used to pay the developers who maintain the software. The net result, at least in theory, is that everyone is happy, as companies enjoy the benefits of professional support at lower rates than they might expect from an established firm, and the developers of the software are finally rewarded for their efforts.