Infrastructure // PC & Servers
News
11/30/2010
12:27 PM
Connect Directly
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

AMD Unwraps Linux Driver For Ontario Chip

Linux distributions beginning next year will include support for the low-power Fusion processor.

AMD last week unveiled a Linux driver for the Ontario chip, the manufacturer's low-powered Fusion processor for netbooks and other products.

Although it is available today, the driver is slated to appear in new Linux distributions beginning with version 2.6.38. That means users most likely won't see the driver accompany distributions such as Ubuntu until 2011, according to reports.

Since it is open source, users can view and edit the driver's code. The move marks AMD's latest pro-open source step: Earlier this year, the company joined the Linux Foundation's MeeGo Project, which supports a Linux-based open source mobile operating system. AMD and competitor Intel also are supporters of the Linux Foundation's License Compliance Program.

AMD's Ontario chip is the processor manufacturer's first Fusion API slated for release. Designed for use in netbooks and other similar devices, the dual-core chip features integrated Radeon HD 6250 graphics and 3D support. The chip is based on the low-power Bobcat CPU core and requires only 9 watts of power, according to reports.

Fusion chips -- or accelerated processing units (APUs) -- meld together parallel graphics processing cores and high-performance serial computing onto one die, a move designed to enhance both visual and data-heavy tasks. AMD's open source support mirrors its existing support for Radeon HD Evergreen, such as its kernel mode-setting, 2D EXA, X-Video, user-space mode-setting, and 3D/OpenGL support, according to the Phoronix website.

"The graphics portion of Ontario is very similar to the entry-level Evergreen GPU, at least for the portions used by the open drivers," AMD's John Bridgman told Phoronix. "There are a few enhancements, but we haven't looked at those yet."

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Server Market Splitsville
Server Market Splitsville
Just because the server market's in the doldrums doesn't mean innovation has ceased. Far from it -- server technology is enjoying the biggest renaissance since the dawn of x86 systems. But the primary driver is now service providers, not enterprises.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
InformationWeek Tech Digest September 24, 2014
Start improving branch office support by tapping public and private cloud resources to boost performance, increase worker productivity, and cut costs.
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
InformationWeek Radio
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.