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Hardware

Intel-based Chromebooks and Games

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GNU
Linux
Google
Hardware
Gaming
  • Intel Compute Runtime Update Adds OpenCL + oneAPI Level Zero For DG1

    Intel's open-source Compute Runtime stack for providing OpenCL and oneAPI Level Zero support for their graphics hardware has now rolled out support for the DG1 Xe discrete graphics card.

    Building off the DG1 support that has materialized for the Linux kernel and other components, most recently the IGC graphics compiler now supporting DG1, today's release of the Intel Compute Runtime has DG1 support in place.

  • Google testing native Steam client on Chromebooks powered by 10th generation Intel CPUs

    Chrome OS, Google’s other operating system to Android, has evolved very rapidly since the 2016 introduction of the Google Play Store, allowing Chromebooks to download and install Android apps. Google has since introduced support for running native Linux apps under the project name of Crostini. Crostini allows full desktop applications to run on Chromebooks and is based on the Debian Linux distribution. Running Android and Linux apps relies on Chrome OS’ ability to run containerized virtual machines, a means of allowing the core operating system to run different segmented virtual machines in an efficient and secure manner. That’s a fancy way of saying your Chromebook can have multiple personalities, and it’s the same technology underpinning how some Chromebooks will soon be able to run Windows apps. Today’s news is that the team at 9to5Google have identified a new special project in the Chromium open-source code called Borealis. Borealis is a Linux distribution based on popular Ubuntu, and comes complete with Steam already installed:

  • Steam on Chromebooks could be a game changer

    There have been continual developments in the realm of Linux on ChromeOS for some time. There early builds — Crostini — were based on Debian Linux.

    What is very different with the new version “Gerrit” versus the older Crostini builds is that it’s now Ubuntu based vs Debian. This is likely due to the previous iterations of Valve’s Steam for Linux running on Ubuntu.

  • Google could bring Steam gaming to Chromebooks (via Linux)

    Chrome OS is an operating system that was originally designed to support a single app – the Chrome web browser. But in recent years Google has brought support for Android apps and Linux apps to Chromebooks.

    So far that Linux support has come through a feature called Crostini, which is basically a virtual machine that runs Debian Linux in a way that lets you install and run Linux software without leaving Chrome OS.

    But 9to5Google was digging through the source code for Chromium OS (the open source version of Chrome OS) and discovered a new Linux virtual machine called Borealis, which uses Ubuntu rather than Debian. Borealis also includes a pre-installed version of Valve’s Steam game client for Linux.

This 15.6 inch Linux laptop features an AMD Ryzen processor

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GNU
Linux
Hardware

Enter the Tongfang PF5PU1G. It’s a 15.6 inch laptop with an AMD Ryzen 5 3500U processor and Radon Vega 8 graphics. The notebook is available from Laptop with Linux for €769 ($865) and up.

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Librem Mini Shipping with Active Cooling

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Linux
Hardware

There’s nothing like making a public announcement to ensure that a situation will change. That’s certainly been true in the case of our Librem Mini. Just over a week ago we announced the Librem Mini was ready to ship and highlighted one issue we intended to solve with a future software update...

Well it turns out that while we were contacting all of the Mini customers to determine whether they wanted their Mini immediately, or whether they wanted to wait for a firmware update, we resolved the fan speed control issue! As we ship out all of the Librem Mini orders, they will all have fully-updated firmware and active cooling.

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Devices: Coral mPCIe, Zynq, and ESPHome

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GNU
Linux
Hardware
  • Using Google Coral mPCIe Card into a Compact Marvell Octeon TX Linux SBC

    Google launched Coral mPCIe and M.2 cards at the very beginning of the year. The cards integrate the company’s 4 TOPS Edge TPU used for low power edge AI applications to bring the solutions to boards with mPCIe or M.2 sockets.

    Those are just hardware sockets that are optionally connected to USB, PCIe, I2C, etc… so you have to make sure the socket on your board exposes PCIe Gen2 x1. If you worry about compatibility, it’s good to get a board that’s known to work, and one of those is Gateworks Newport GW6903 SBC that offers two mPCIe sockets and features Marvell Octeon TX dual or quad-core Armv8 processor coupled with up to 4GB RAM.

  • Zynq UltraScale+ Arm FPGA FZ3 Deep Learning Accelerator Card Supports Baidu Brain AI Tools

    FZ3 card runs PetaLinux, and supports Baidu PaddlePaddle deep learning AI framework, as well as Baidu Brain AI tools such as EasyDL, AI Studio, and EasyEdge. Those enable the development of deep learning applications such as smart cameras, AI Edge embedded PCs, AI robots, smart cars, intelligent electronic scale, autonomous UAV, and more.

  • Simple IoT Devices using ESPHome

    ESPHome is a build and deployment system that takes all of the manual coding work out of integrating custom Internet of Things (IoT) devices with Home Assistant. It advertises support for not only the ESP8266, but also its big-brother the ESP32 and even various ESP8266-based off-the-shelf consumer devices from Sonoff. ESPHome achieves a code-free integration by implementing the auto-discovery protocols necessary for Home Assistant to pull the features of the device into the hub with just a few clicks. Wiring up an ESP8266 to the desired hardware, and defining that hardware properly in the configuration, is all that is needed to enable it in the hub.

    For hardware wired to an ESP8266 to be used with ESPHome, it must first be supported by an ESPHome component. The ESPHome project's website lists the various hardware it understands how to work with, from sensors to displays. While the collection of IoT device components is not as comprehensive as one could imagine, ESPHome does offer many of the common ones used in smart homes. The project's last release, v1.14.0 in November 2019, included 24 new components.

    [...]

    The ESPHome project has a healthy community supporting it with 132 contributors and 67 releases to date, including the latest v1.14.0 release. The project itself operates under a dual licensing model where the C++ code is released under GPLv3 and the Python code is released under an MIT license. Those interested in contributing (both documentation or code) can review the contributor guidelines for how best to get involved. There doesn't appear to be a mailing list for the project, but there is a Discord channel available.

TrueNAS 12.0-BETA1 Release Announcement

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Hardware
BSD

FreeNAS (and now TrueNAS) Fans! I'm pleased to announce the availability of our first BETA1 for the upcoming 12.0 TrueNAS CORE / Enterprise release.

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Also: TrueNAS 12 Beta 1 Released With Much Improved ZFS, Better AMD Ryzen CPU Support

Review of the HP Pavilion 14-ce0830nd

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Hardware
Reviews
SUSE

Would I recommend the HP Pavilion 14-ce0830nd? To be honest, its a mixed bag on openSUSE. Installation of openSUSE Leap 15.2 was very easy. And installation of a dual boot system with Windows 10 was easy as well. The laptop has an attractive look and feel. The display, speakers, keyboard and external ports are all good. The touchpad is too sensitive. The machine has enough RAM, enough storage and the hard drives are performant. The Intel CPU/GPU is great. Which means that this is a great machine for multitasking. The gaming performance on the Intel GPU on openSUSE Leap 15.2 is good enough to play various open source games on medium/high settings.

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Linux-Friendly Devices

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GNU
Linux
Hardware

CutiePi tablet based on Raspberry Pi CM3+ starts at $169

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GNU
Linux
Hardware

On Kickstarter: a $169 and up, open source “CutiePi” tablet that runs a Linux- and Qt-based stack on a quad-core, 1.2GHz Raspberry Pi CM3+ Lite. You also get an 8-inch, 1280 x 800 touchsceen, a 5000mAh battery, and USB and micro-HDMI ports.

Taiwanese startup CutiePi, Which has been teasing details about its Raspberry Pi Compute Module based CutiePi tablet since last August, will go live on Kickstarter on Tuesday. The 8-inch tablet starts at a super early bird price of $169 and features a CutiePi UI shell based on Qt and Raspberry Pi OS (the latest version of Raspbian). The tablet is OSHWA-certified for open source hardware compliance and will also be available in a PCB-only package.

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Now firmware can depend on available client features

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Linux
Hardware

At the moment we just blindly assume the capabilities of the front-end client when installing firmware. We can somewhat work around this limitation by requiring a new enough fwupd daemon version, but the GUI client software may be much older than the fwupd version or just incomplete. If you maintain a text or graphical client that uses fwupd to deploy updates then there’s an additional API call I’d like you to start using so we can fix this limitation.

This would allow, for instance, the firmware to specify that it requires the client to be able to show a runtime detach image. This would not be set by a dumb command line tool using FwupdClient, but would be set by a GUI client that is capable of downloading a URL and showing a PNG to the user.

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Also: LVFS Serves Up Over 17 Million Firmware Files To Linux Users

MontaVista adds continuous integration support

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Hardware

MontaVista announced v3.1 of its Carrier Grade eXpress 3.1 embedded Linux distro based on Linux 5.4 LTS and Yocto 3.1 LTS. CGX 3.1 improves support for CI/CD and is more closely aligned with the Yocto Project.

MontaVista Software has upgraded its Yocto Project based Carrier Grade eXpress to version 3.1 with a focus on Continuous Integration and Continuous Deployment (CI/CD) support. The pioneering embedded Linux firm also announced greater alignment with the Yocto Project development model and vowed increased support for MontaVista’s free, completely open source OpenCGX version.

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Also: Tiny NanoPi NEO3 SBC Targets Networked Storage with GbE and USB 3.0

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