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In Brief

Graphics hardware support

  • Chris Wilson has released version 2.17 of the X.org drivers for the graphics cores in Intel's laptop and desktop PC chipsets. The main changes are a number of bug fixes. Intel developer Eugeni Dodonov reports on some other areas of progress in Intel drivers, such as support for OpenGL Shading Language (GLSL) 1.30 in the Mesa development tree, on his blog (1, 2).
  • AMD has released version 11.10 of its proprietary graphics driver. As has long been standard with AMD, the documentation for the new version contains no information on changes or new features. The new version is compatible with X server 1.11 and, according to a Phoronix report, also offers early look support for openSUSE 12.1 and runtime support for OpenCL.
  • Jeremy Huddleston has released Xorg server 1.11.2, which fixes several bugs. He was followed two weeks later by Keith Packard, who released Xorg server 1.11.99.1, the first pre-release version of X server 1.12 from X.org. He also mentioned that he now intends to release interim versions of the developer tree as above in parallel to new versions of the current X server version. He is also considering bringing forward the release date for Xorg server 1.12 to early February or putting it back to early March. It is not yet clear whether multitouch support, which this version was scheduled to offer, will be ready in time.

Kernel plumbing layer, userland drivers, developer tools, etc.

  • In a blog posting, Matthew Garrett describes boot problems which occur on some BIOSes when the system disk is partitioned using a GPT (GUID Partition Table) instead of an MBR (Master Boot Record). This kind of partitioning can be useful on disks larger than 2 TB and is, for example, set up by default in the recently released Fedora 16.
  • In a blog posting entitled "Application/Compositor Synchronization", GNOME developer Owen Taylor explores some aspects of the process of synchronising applications and compositors with the monitor's frame rate.
  • Johannes Berg has released version 3.2 of wireless configuration tool iw.
  • Cryptosetup version 1.4.0 and its successor 1.4.1 contain everything needed to activate the new discard support in dm-crypt in Linux 3.1. In the release notes, the developers refer readers to a blog posting by one of the DM developers, which details problems relating to the discard function (useful for SSDs) when using encryption.

LKML discussions

  • Catalin Marinas is working on patches to add support for Large Physical Address Extensions (LPAE) to the ARM code, to allow the 32-bit ARM kernel to address more than 4 GB of memory.
  • As part of a discussion on merging the 'native KVM tool', Ingo Molnar has composed a set of FAQs in which he explains, from the perspective of perf (which he is the driving force behind), the benefits which can accrue from integrating software which is closely tied to the kernel into the Linux tools directory.
  • Max Kellermann has presented a cgroup controller intended to limit the effects of fork bombs. A series of patches released by Frederic Weisbecker in early October pursued the same objective.

Further background information about the developments in the Linux kernel area can be found using the search function at The H Open Source. Information about previous Linux kernel releases can be found in The H's Linux Kernel History. New editions of Kernel Logs are also mentioned on Identi.ca and Twitter by @kernellog2. The Kernel Log author also posts updates about various topics on Identi.ca and Twitter as @kernellogauthor.

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