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AMD Developer Discusses New Linux CPPC Drivers For Ryzen, Steam Deck

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Linux
Hardware
Gaming

In preparation for the Steam Deck launch in the coming months, AMD and Valve have been hard at work building a new CPU driver that will enhance the performance and power efficiency of Ryzen-based processors on the Linux platform. One of AMD's developers, Ray Huang, shared details of the new driver in a presentation last Friday at the X.Org Developers Conference (XDC2021). You can check out the video below for full details.

According to the presentation, the new CPU driver started development when Valve found problems with the current ACPI CPUFreq driver being used today on all Intel and AMD Processors running a Linux OS. The developer found performance problems with games using its Proton compatibility layer, that was caused by incorrect sysfs calls to Wine from the CPUFreq driver. This is particularly worrying because Valve needs this problem fixed if it wants the Steam Deck to run games smoothly with its custom Zen 2 SoC and Linux-based SteamOS.

Once Valve contacted AMD about the matter, AMD also found other issues pertaining to the older ACPI driver, which were causing problems with Ryzen's performance and power efficiency on Linux.

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AMD’s crusty Linux CPU driver is getting an update ahead...

  • AMD’s crusty Linux CPU driver is getting an update ahead of Steam Deck

    The release of the Steam Deck is only a few months away, and AMD is working to ensure the portable’s Ryzen CPU shines bright. In light of this, an AMD developer has revealed that these efforts include replacing the processor’s ageing ACPI Linux driver to solve Proton related issues.

    During the recent X.Org Developers Conference, AMD’s software engineer, Ray Huang shared the company’s plans to replace its Linux ACPI CPUFreq driver used on all Intel and AMD processors. The developer also disclosed that the driver isn’t currently playing nice with games using Valve’s Proton compatibility layer, which could prove detrimental to the Steam Deck’s stability. Naturally, this is something that AMD and Valve want to avoid, as it could hamper the Steam Deck’s ability to provide a seamless portable gaming PC experience.

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