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9to5Linux Weekly Roundup: October 24th, 2021

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Linux
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This week has been really educational for Linux fans as we were able to install the UnityX desktop environment on Arch Linux, as well as the KDE Plasma 5.23 desktop environment on Kubuntu 21.10. In addition, we were able to test drive the upcoming Ubuntu 22.04 LTS distribution and Ubuntu’s new Desktop Installer.

On top of that, this week we saw new releases of the lightweight and systemd-free MX Linux 21 distribution, Gentoo-based Redcore Linux, as well as the Porteus Kiosk distribution for public computers and kisoks.

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Kernel: Bareflank 3.0, USB4, User Managed Concurrency Groups

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Linux
  • Bareflank 3.0 Hypervisor Released With Microkernel Design, AMD Virtualization Support - Phoronix

    Bareflank, as what started a few years ago as a Linux hypervisor written in modern C++ and focused on security and other new features as a "hypervisor SDK" of sorts, is now up to version 3.0.

  • AMD Continues Work On USB4 Support In Their Linux Graphics Driver - Phoronix

    Earlier this month AMD's open-source driver engineers began posting patches for the AMDGPU kernel driver to handle USB4 DP tunneling. That tunneling for DisplayPort with USB4 is for upcoming Yellow Carp / Rembrandt APUs. The USB4 driver bring-up within AMDGPU continues.

  • Google Continues Work On User-Managed Concurrency Groups For Linux - Phoronix

    Earlier this year was news that Google is finally working to open-source their Fibers user-space scheduling framework. For the better part of the past decade they have been developing this user-space scheduling framework and finally now are working on offering public, open-source code intended for upstream around their work.

    As part of this opening of Fibers, Google published their "User Managed Concurrency Groups" code as the kernel patches introducing some new kernel-side primitives for their user-space scheduling framework. This can also be used for security sandboxes and other use-cases.

EasyOS version 3.1 released

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GNU
Linux

EasyOS version 2.9 was released on September 3, 2021 and 3.0 released on October 5, 2021. Version 2.9 was announced on Distrowatch, but not 3.0 as it was really a testing release for the 3.x version numbering. Thanks to the guys who tested 3.0, there have been many enhancements. Always more to do of course, and my to-list keeps getting added to. But, this is a point where we can feature-freeze and bring out a new release.

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Audiocasts/Videos: This Week in Linux, GNU World Order, Unvanquished, and More

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GNU
Linux

Kernel: Bootlin, Mediatek, XWayland, and More

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Linux
  • Embedded Linux Boot time optimization: training and webinar

    Bootlin has been helping its customers optimize the boot time of embedded Linux systems for many years, ensuring that these systems meet their startup time requirements. Thanks to this, Bootlin has accumulated a significant experience in this field.

  • Mediatek Posts 8k Lines Of New Linux Kernel Driver Code For AI Processing Unit Support - Phoronix

    For a number of months Mediatek engineers have been posting some Linux kernel driver code for bringing up the AI Processing Unit (APU) within the MT8192 SoC while out this weekend is the complete patch series at more than eight thousand lines of code.

    There has been some APU power handling and IOMMU patches previously posted while on Saturday was the complete set of patches for bringing up the MT8192 APU with power control, tinysys controller (a micro-controller on the APU), and middleware support. In total it's 8.1k lines of new kernel code.

  • xwayland 21.1.2.901
    This is a release candidate for Xwayland 21.1.3.
    
    Most notable change is a fix for the GBM backend to work with the
    Nvidia driver series 495.
    
    Unless any major issues turn up, I'm planning to make the final release
    in the coming weeks.
    
    James Jones (1):
           Use EGL_LINUX_DMA_BUF_EXT to create GBM bo EGLImages
    
    Olivier Fourdan (5):
           xwayland/shm: Avoid integer overflow on large pixmaps
           xwayland: Set GLVND driver based on GBM backend name
           xwayland: Clear tablet cursor pending frame cb
           xwayland/test: Don't catch errors in run-piglit.sh
           Bump version to 21.1.2.901
    
    Povilas Kanapickas (1):
           glamor: Fix handling of 1-bit pixmaps
    
    Simon Ser (1):
           xwayland: fix xdg_output leak
    
    git tag: xwayland-21.1.2.901
    
  • XWayland 21.1.3 Nears With Support For NVIDIA 495 Driver's GBM - Phoronix

    The release candidate to XWayland 21.1.3 is out today with just a few changes but made significant by support for the NVIDIA 495 series driver GBM code path.

    XWayland 21.1.3 is the next point release to this code that is spun out from the upstream X.Org Server for delivering standalone XWayland releases separate from tagged xorg-server versions. XWayland 21.3. has only a handful of fixes like an XDG_Output memory leak fix, fixed handling of 1-bit pixmaps in GLAMOR, avoiding possible integer overflows on large pixmaps, and other maintenance items.

  • Vulkanised Fall 2021 Material Available - Autodesk Has Begun Using MoltenVK - Phoronix

    Last week was the virtual Vulkanised Fall 2021 event hosted by The Khronos Group. The two-day event was focused on all things Vulkan and for those that missed it all of the slide decks and other material are now available.

    This was a two-day virtual affair focused on the high performance graphics and compute API featuring a current status update around features like ray-tracing and video encode/decode, interesting usages of Vulkan, and related work like Arm's astcenc encoder, HLSL shader compilation, and more.

Kernel: Intel, Vortex86, System76

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Linux
  • Intel Posts The "Last Part" To Their AMX Bring-Up For Linux - Phoronix

    While for many years we have been accustomed to seeing Intel land their new hardware feature enablement work in the Linux kernel and related components well ahead of products shipping, occasionally there are lapses due to various internal and external timings. The launch of Sapphire Rapids is quickly approaching and one of the major additions is Advanced Matrix Extensions with its Linux support still being in the works.

    Going back to June of 2020 Intel has been posting patches around AMX for the Linux kernel, the open-source toolchains, and related components. On the Linux kernel side that heavy-lifting is still ongoing with no released Linux kernel yet having the support in place for AMX.

  • Intel Graphics Driver's New Parallel Submission uAPI Landing For Linux 5.16 - Phoronix

    This multi-LRC / parallel submission code for their GuC engine and exposed as a new user-space API is ready to go for Linux 5.16. This is part of their long ongoing effort around GuC submission handling and improving their user-space API as they integrate the DRM scheduler and make other fundamental improvements. This new uAPI is being worked on since their existing bonding uAPI is considered "broken" when using GuC submission. For those interested in all of the fine technical details on their parallel submission uAPI design and motivation for doing so can see this kernel documentation.

  • Vortex86 Processor Detection Landing For Linux 5.16 - Phoronix

    Recently I wrote about Vortex86 processors seeing detection work under Linux for improving the state of these aging x86 32-bit SoCs. That work is now slated to be introduced in the upcoming Linux 5.16 cycle for those running these aging SoCs/processors.

    As outlined in the prior article, the motivation for finally having proper Linux kernel detection around Vortex86 processors stems from these in-order processors not being vulnerable to Spectre and Meltdown. However, with current versions of the Linux kernel the Spectre/Meltdown mitigations are applied to these x86 32-bit SoCs for the kernel not knowing that they aren't vulnerable.

  • System76 Laptops To See Some Useful Improvements With Linux 5.16 - Phoronix

    Patches queued this week into the platform-drivers-x86 "for-next" branch ahead of the Linux 5.16 merge window will provide some useful improvements to System76 laptop owners.

    Several improvements to the System76 ACPI driver were queued up into this area of the kernel that holds various x86 laptop drivers and more.

New Videos: Text Editors, KDE, Anime, and 'ArchTitus'

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GNU
Linux

Vim4 SBC with up to 8GB RAM rides octa-core Amlogic A311D2

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Linux

Khadas is prepping a “Khadas Vim4” SBC that runs Linux on a new, octa-core -A73 and -A53 Amlogic A311D2 SoC with support for 16GB RAM. The Vim4 offers 8GB RAM, 802.11ax, dual CSI links, and a micro-HDMI 2.1 input.

Shenzhen Wesion’s Khadas project has announced an upgrade of its open-spec Khadas Vim3 SBC with Amlogic’s new octa-core A311D2 in place of the Vim3’s hexa-core A311D. The Khadas Vim4 has the same footprint and much the same layout and feature set, but it boosts the RAM support to 8GB and adds Wi-Fi 6 and several new media interfaces.

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Ubuntu 22.04 LTS (Jammy Jellyfish) Daily Builds Are Now Available for Download

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Linux
News
Ubuntu

Ubuntu developer Steve Langasek was the one to announce earlier this week that the upcoming Ubuntu 22.04 LTS (Jammy Jellyfish) operating system is officially open for development, with Python 3.10 supported by default.

And now, early adopters and application developers interested in test driving the upcoming release can now download the daily builds for Jammy Jellyfish, which you can grab from Ubuntu’s main download servers.

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KDE Plasma 5.24 Desktop Environment to Introduce Support for Fingerprint Readers

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KDE
Linux
News

Renowned KDE developer Nate Graham shared today the big news that a fingerprint authentication feature, which is in development for quite a while now, has finally been merged and will be ready for deployment as part of the upcoming KDE Plasma 5.24 desktop environment series, due for release next year.

Fingerprint authentication support has been implemented in the Users panel in System Settings. There, users who have a fingerprint reader, either built-in in their laptop or as an external device, will be able to enroll, as well as to de-enroll fingerprints.

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