Don't Miss - Linux Kernel 5.18 Is Now Available, Here's What's New - Raspberry Pi Projects, Tutorials, Learning DIY Electronics - Makergenix

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Don't Miss - Linux Kernel 5.18 Is Now Available, Here's What's New

A new version of the Linux kernel is now available for download.

Don't Miss - Linux Kernel 5.18 Is Now Available, Here's What's New

In a brief email to the Linux Kernel Mailing List, Linus Torvalds, the developer of Linux, announced the release of Linux 5.18, writing: "No unexpected bad surprises this last week, so here we are with the 5.18 release exactly on time."


Monsieur Torvalds, I admire your timeliness. Predictability and scheduling make writing these blog articles a lot easier—no, I'm lying: I usually wait until the last minute to write them.


What's the latest? Let's investigate together!


Features of Linux 5.18


The addition of the Intel Software Defined Silicon (SDSi) driver in the mainline kernel is one of the most notable developments in Linux kernel 5.18. This driver (to cut a long story short) disables access to certain CPU functionalities if a certificate from Intel isn’t available.


Some fear that SDSi may usher in a new business model in which users must 'pay' for a license to 'unlock' CPU functionalities. Consider in-app purchases for the gear you've purchased; all features are available, but they're deactivated by default.


However, there are no technical reasons why the SDSi driver should not be included in the Linux kernel, as LWN's Jonathan Corbet notes in his summary of the controversy. Regardless of how Intel uses the features, it supplies down the road, the implementation/support is no different from other drivers freely available.


Furthermore, Intel has not yet stated its plans for SDSi-enabled CPU features. For the time being, part of the concern is speculative and (presumably) exaggerated.

On the hardware front, this release brings full mainline Linux kernel support to the Raspberry Pi Zero 2 W (i.e., everything just works out of the box); the Tesla FSD chip (a Samsung-based ARM SoC that the company is using in its fully-autonomous cars) is upstreamed, and there's the usual batch of bring-up for newer AMD and Intel processors in development.


Compatibility for Images touchscreens; functioning ACPI profile support for AMD-powered ThinkPads; and more work to improve Apple Magic Keyboard support, including FN key mapping for the first-generation and 2015 versions.


Linux 5.18 also includes the following new features:

  • Intel hybrid processors now have a new Hardware Feedback Interface (HFI) driver.
  • Updates to the NUMA balancing scheduler for AMD EPYC servers
  • HSMP driver for AMD
  • Several AMD nested virtualization enhancements
  • Intel Xeon 'Sapphire Rapids' CPUs have Idle driver support.
  • AMDGPU driver has FreeSync enabled by default.
  • Btrfs allows for encoded I/O as well as quicker fsync.
  • FN key mapping for touch bar MacBook Pros


The Kernel Newbies page, LWN's merge overviews (parts 1 and 2), Phoronix's feature summary, and the raw source code itself (g'won, you know you want to) are all good places to go for further information.


Linux 5.18 will be released in rolling release distros in the near future. The upgrade will be available on Pop! OS in the near future, in accordance with that distro's policy of providing users with newer kernels than Ubuntu offers.

Source- OMG Ubuntu

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