For several years now Facebook engineers have been working on BOLT as a way to speed-up Linux/ELF binaries. This “Binary Optimization and Layout Tool” is able to re-arrange executables once profiled to generate even faster performance than what can be achieved by a compiler’s LTO and PGO optimizations. One of the latest BOLT efforts has been on optimizing the Linux kernel image.
Earlier this month Intel engineers posted their initial Linux kernel enablement around x86 User Interrupts with this feature premiering with Xeon “Sapphire Rapids” CPUs. As implied by the name, the User Interrupt functionality allows for interrupts to bypass the kernel for more efficient, low-latency, low-utilization interrupts being received by other user-space tasks. Intel talked more about User Interrupts this week at LPC2021.
While the OpenZFS 2.1 feature release has been available since July, for those still using the OpenZFS 2.0.x series and not yet prepared to make the jump to that big new release with dRAID and other changes, OpenZFS 2.0.6 was released this week.
Building off yesterday’s Wine 6.18 development release is now the next Wine-Staging installment that has more than six hundred extra patches on top.
Another item is now crossed off the XWayland TODO list with OpenGL sRGB support wired up.
Wine 6.18 has been popped as the newest bi-weekly development release of this software that allows Windows applications and games to run under Linux and in turn what also powers Steam Play’s Proton.
Yesterday it was Epic Games confirming Easy Anti-Cheat for Linux and Wine/Proton ahead of the Steam Deck launch and today it’s BattlEye confirming Proton / Steam Deck support.
IBM engineer Daniel Axtens presented at this week’s Linux Plumbers Conference on the prospects of using the Rust programming language for creating modules for the GRUB2 boot-loader.
Coreutils 9.0 is now available and it’s a significant update to this collection of common open-source utilities found on effectively all Linux systems.
A few weeks ago I finally received the HiFive Unmatched from SiFive as their flagship RISC-V development board. As a reminder this is their mini-ITX development board that is powered by their U740 SoC and features 16GB of DDR4 system memory, one PCI Express x16 slot that can work with AMD Radeon graphics cards on Linux, and other features. It’s been a delight playing with this developer platform and enclosed are some early benchmarks as well showing off the U740 performance as well as how the Linux software support/performance has been evolving.
MidnightBSD 2.1 debuted this week as the latest version of one of the few desktop-focused BSD open-source operating system projects.
Canonical has released the final beta of next month’s Ubuntu 21.10 “Impish Indri” release.
With Chrome 94 having shipped this week, Google has now promoted Chrome 95 to beta.
As a follow-up to A Fix Is Pending For That Linux 5.15 Performance Regression, Linus Torvalds decided to pull the fix directly into Linux 5.15 Git today for addressing this real-world, measurable performance regression.
Generating much excitement back in 2018 was bpfilter for the potential to better Linux’s firewall and packet filtering by making it more robust and performance. Recently work on this BPF-based firewall solution was renewed and the performance potential over iptables and nftables is looking very good for the future.
Not too surprising given the Steam Deck is inching closer towards release and we’ve known Valve has been working to improve the anti-cheat situation for games on Linux, but today EAC owner Epic Games officially announced Easy Anti-Cheat for both Linux and macOS.
The promising FUTEX2 work focused on improving the Linux performance for running Windows games via Wine/Proton by extending futex to wait on multiple locks is still moving forward.
Last week was the article on noticing various workloads performing slower on the Linux 5.15 development kernel. There is now a patch pending that in testing so far does indeed correct the performance drop on this forthcoming kernel.
Microsoft’s “CLOn12” effort to allow OpenCL over DirectX 12 by leveraging Mesa now has landed a major rework to its code within Mesa.
Qing Zhao of Oracle presented yesterday during the LPC2021 GNU Tools Track around the work they and others have been engaged in for improving the security of the GNU Compiler Collection (GCC).
Most Linux distributions are currently coming up short from offering adequate security around full disk encryption and authenticated boot. Prominent Linux developer Lennart Poettering even argues that your data is “probably more secure if stored on current ChromeOS, Android, Windows or macOS devices.”
The latest batch of miscellaneous Direct Rendering Manager changes are on their way to DRM-Next for Linux 5.16. Notable from this new drm-misc-next batch is the new “panel-edp” driver.
Systemd-oomd as the out-of-memory daemon originally developed by Facebook has been maturing nicely since being merged last year and then its most notable deployment to date has been with Fedora 34’s debut earlier this year. Anita Zhang of Facebook provided an update today on the systemd-oomd effort.
Valve today published a “Steam Deck FAQ” page sharing some additional information on this forthcoming Arch Linux powered handheld game system that will begin shipping at the end of Q4.
Google’s Android had been notorious for all of its downstream patches carried by the mobile operating system as well as various vendor/device kernel trees while in recent years more of that code has been upstreamed. Google has also been shifting to the Android Generic Kernel Image (GKI) as the basis for all their product kernels to further reduce the fragmentation. Looking ahead, Google is now talking of an “upstream first” approach for pushing new kernel features.
Merged yesterday for Mesa 21.3 was open-source Vulkan ray-tracing for AMD RDNA2 / RX 6000 series GPUs with the RADV driver. Opened today now is a merge request that would provide Vulkan ray-tracing with RADV to pre-RDNA2 GPUs on this driver going back to the likes of Polaris, granted the performance is another story.
GNOME 41 is out as the latest half-year update to this open-source desktop environment.
Earlier this month AMD posted their initial public patches for the AMD P-State CPU frequency scaling driver that leverages ACPI CPPC for ultimately aiming to provide better power efficiency and more responsive CPU frequency scaling / performance state decisions on Zen 3 (and Zen 2 eventually) processors. This is part of the effort around AMD and Valve collaborating for better Linux efficiency especially with the AMD-powered Steam Deck.
While the GNU Compiler Collection has supported OpenACC for a few years now as this parallel programming standard popular with GPUs/accelerators, the current implementation has been found to be inadequate for many real-world HPC workloads leveraging OpenACC. Fortunately, Siemens has been working to improve GCC’s OpenACC kernels support.
Aya was presented during this week’s Linux Plumbers Conference for improving the eBPF developer experience by allowing Rust programs to easily run within the kernel.
UBports on Tuesday released Ubuntu Touch OTA-19 as the latest refinement to this Ubuntu Linux spin for smartphones and tablets.
Mesa point releases generally come every two weeks but for the past month have fallen off the wagon. Mesa 21.2.1 came in mid-August and on Tuesday was finally succeeded by Mesa 21.2.2 as a “late and very large” update.
More than three years after X.Org Server 1.20 was released, it’s set to finally be succeeded soon by X.Org Server 21.1 under its new versioning scheme. Out today is the X.org Server 21.1 release candidate.
AMD’s open-source Linux graphics driver engineers are working to overhaul how the initial driver loading with device enumeration happens to ultimately make it more robust. In the process though PCI IDs become less important and in turn less of an avenue for exposing possible indicators of new graphics cards.
Cycles X as a modernizing of Blender’s Cycles rendering engine has now landed in the latest development code for Blender 3.0. Cycles X brings big performance improvements but does eliminate OpenCL support in the process.
Chrome 94 is available today as another exciting update for Google’s web browser.
Oracle engineers have been working on “gprofng” as a next-generation GNU Profiler that can analyze production binaries. Oracle talked up Gprofng today during the GNU Tools Track as part of Linux Plumbers Conference 2021.
The Linux Foundation announced today they will be hosting the PaSh project that is focused on automatically parallelizing POSIX shell scripts.
While there is now KSMBD with Linux 5.15 for offering an in-kernel SMB file server, its scope is much more limited than that of the Samba project in user-space. With that said, Samba 4.15 is out now with its latest batch of features and improvements for open-source SMB/CIFS support on Linux and other platforms.
Canonical is announcing this morning they are extending the Ubuntu 14.04 LTS “Trusty Tahr” and Ubuntu 16.04 LTS “Xenial Xerus” releases to a ten year lifespan.
Going public back in April was the provisional specification around the Vulkan Video extensions as a new industry-standard video encode/decode interface. While several months have passed, there hasn’t been much activity yet in the open-source space around Vulkan Video.
Landing overnight into Mesa 21.3 was experimentally enabling the Vulkan ray-tracing extensions within the open-source Radeon “RADV” driver.
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