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01 August 2008, 09:17

Kernel Log : Tux3 file system announced, updates

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Kernel developer of many years, Daniel Phillips posted several emails concerning file system design, then announced he was planning to take these ideas and apply them to the design and development of Tux3, although there is no currently functioning Tux 3 source code. The Tux3 announcement also discusses the details and differences of existing file systems, but Phillips has had no response to his posting. It will be seen in time whether Phillips' Tux3 has any more success over his predecessor project, Tux2, which was never published due to patent problems.

Btrfs already exists and, like Tux3, offers some of the features of the Solaris ZFS file system for addressing the limitations of current file systems. This is in addition to the quite young and not completely finished Ext4, successor to the widespread Ext3 file system. Btrfs is still in a early development stage, but compared with the only vaguely outlined Tux3, it's lengths ahead; started by Oracle developer Chris Mason, Btrfs already has numerous developers and companies supporting it.

Originally, the X Window System version 7.4 was planned to be released by at the end of April, but the developers have been waiting on the release of Mesa 7.1. As a foretaste of the next release, have released a preview version of xorg-server, the server which will be in 7.4. This, from the outside, may appear to be chaotic release management of, but it could resolve itself at the X Developers Summit (XDS) which is being held at the start of September in Edinburgh.

The developers of the graphics driver for Intel have released version 2.4.0 which now supports the Intel Series 4 chip-sets (G43, G45 and co.), displays connected using HDMI and improved rendering performance on the 965 chipset. Meanwhile, one of the developers of the Intel graphics drivers gave a status report on working on reducing vblank interrupts to save power of notebooks.

AMD has also released a parser for the ATOM BIOS which should make development of Linux graphics drivers which do kernel based mode-setting (kms) easier. An rudimentary version that works with cards such as the Radeon X1000 was announced by the developer of the developer of the Radeon driver. RadeonHD developer Luc Verhaegen explained in his blog, the advantages of a new branch of the RadeonHD driver which supports Command Submission (CS).

Jonathan Corber, kernel developer and manager of, released several long documents as a patch to the Linux documentation which describe in detail how the Linux kernel development process works. He also explains why the framework is important for programmers and why programmers should bring all improvements into the main development branch. It also covers what is important when submitting a patch. This process was also described by Andi Kleen in his lecture On submitting kernel patches – one of the many useful presentations from Ottawa Linux Symposium 2008.

In Brief

  • File system expert Valerie (Val) Henson is becoming a part time employee at Red Hat and talks about what she'll be doing there in her blog.
  • Linus Torvalds talks about his linux-next experience since using it for 2.6.27-rc1.
  • IBM DeveloperWorks have published an article on how loadable kernel modules work.
  • The main development branch has had Oprofile support patched ready for Intel's Nehalam processors to arrive. Adding support for the XSAVE and XRSTOR in the E0 stepping series of Core 2 Duo E8000, Core 2 Quad Q9000 and Intel Xeon 3000 is also in progress.
  • An AMD developer has introduced AMD microcode patch loading support, refactoring the code into multiple modules to allow Intel microcode patch loading to live alongside it.

Further background and information about developments in the Linux kernel and its environment can also be found in previous issues of the kernel log at heise Open Source:

Older Kernel logs can be found in the archives or by using the search function at heise open.


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