Linux 5.3 Release – Main Changes, Arm, MIPS & RISC-V Architectures

Linux 5.3 Changelog

Linus Torvalds has just announced the release of Linux 5.3: So we’ve had a fairly quiet last week, but I think it was good that we ended up having that extra week and the final rc8. Even if the reason for that extra week was my travel schedule rather than any pending issues, we ended up having a few good fixes come in, including some for some bad btrfs behavior. Yeah, there’s some unnecessary noise in there too (like the speling fixes), but we also had several last-minute reverts for things that caused issues. One _particularly_ last-minute revert is the top-most commit (ignoring the version change itself) done just before the release, and while it’s very annoying, it’s perhaps also instructive. What’s instructive about it is that I reverted a commit that wasn’t actually buggy. In fact, it was doing exactly what it set out to do, and did it very well. In fact it did it _so_ well that …

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Huawei Kirin 990 & Samsung Exynos 980 are the First Mobile SoCs with Integrated 5G Modem

Samsung Exynos 980

[Update: post edited on September 6, 2019 with more details about Kirin 990 5G following the official launch of the processor] We’ve already seen mobile phones and laptops with the latest 5G cellular connectivity such as Samsung Galaxy S10 5G or Lenovo Project Limitless 5G laptop, which internally are designed with an Arm SoC plus a separate 5G modem chip. But as IFA 2019 is about to start, both Huawei and Samsung claim to have introduced the world’s first SoC with an integrated 5G modem with respectively Huawei Kirin 990 and Samsung Exynos 980. We should note that MediaTek is working on their own 5G SoC as well. Samsung Exynos 980 Samsung has already made the announcement so we have Exynos 980 key features and specifications: CPU – Octa-core processor with two Arm Cortex-A77 cores @ 2.2GHz, six Arm Cortex-A55 cores @ 1.8GHz GPU – Mali-G76 MP5 GPU Integrated NPU with “performances of up to 2.7 times compared to its …

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Linux 5.2 Release – Main Changes, Arm, MIPS & RISC-V Architectures

Linux 5.2 Changelog

Linus Torvalds announced the release of Linux 5.2 last Sunday: So I was somewhat pre-disposed towards making an rc8, simply because of my travels and being entirely off the internet for a few days last week, and with spotty internet for a few days before that [*]. But there really doesn’t seem to be any reason for another rc, since it’s been very quiet. Yes, I had a few pull requests since rc7, but they were all small, and I had many more that are for the upcoming merge window. Part of it may be due to the July 4th week, of course, but whatever – I’ll take the quiet week as a good sign. So despite a fairly late core revert, I don’t see any real reason for another week of rc, and so we have a v5.2 with the normal release timing. There’s no particular area that stands out there – the changes are sosmall that the appended …

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299 Euros Motorola One Vision Smartphone Features Samsung Exynos 9609 SoC

Motorola One Vision

I find most new phones’ announcements rather boring, but Motorola One Vision is somewhat interesting as it’s one of the rare non-Samsung phones to features an Exynos processor, more specifically Exynos 9609 which has not been seen in any other smartphones so far. Its other highlight is the 48MP camera sensor normally found in premium phones, and not in a 299 Euros device. Motorola One Vision specifications: SoC – Samsung Exynos 7609 octa-core processor with 4x Cortex-A73 @ 2.2GHz,  4x Cortex-A53 @ 1.6GHz, and Arm Mali G72MP3 System Memory – 4GB LPDDR4 Storage – 128GB internal storage, microSD card slot Display – 6.3″ LCD touch screen display with 2520 x 1080 resolution (21:9 aspect ratio) Camera 48MP rear camera with OIS based on IMX586 sensor 5MP Depth sensor 25MP front-facing camera Audio – 3.5mm headphone jack Wireless connectivity Cellular – 1x nanoSIM + 1x nanoSIM/microSD hybrid 802.11ac Wave 2 Wi-Fi 2×2 MIMO Bluetooth 5.0 LE USB – 1x USB type-C …

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e.Foundation to Sell Refurbished Phones Running Google-Free /e/ Android OS

Google Free Android Smartphone

Most Android phones come with Google services, which is both a boon and a curse, as those services are often convenient, but they come at the loss of your privacy.  For example, most people get all upset and lost if a firmware image for an SBC is shipped without Google Play Store, but yet at the same time they worry about their privacy providing all their data to a single company like Google. There must be a better way, and that’s what the e.foundation is attempting with /e/ operating system based on Android, but without any of the Google Services, and targetting your typical end-users, as opposed to geek. /e/ operating system aims to provide privacy both inside the phone, and via cloud services unrelated to Google. It is a fork of LineageOS 14.1 itself a fork of AOSP, and replaces Google services and apps with programs such as MicroG open source implementation of Google’s proprietary Android user space apps …

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Linux 5.1 Release – Main Changes, Arm, MIPS & RISC-V Architectures

Linux 5.1 Changelog

Linus Torvalds has just announced the release of Linux 5.1: So it’s a bit later in the day than I usually do this, just because I was waffling about the release. Partly because I got some small pull requests today, but mostly just because I wasn’t looking forward to the timing of this upcoming 5.2 merge window. But the last-minute pull requests really weren’t big enough to justify delaying things over, and hopefully the merge window timing won’t be all that painful either. I just happen to have the college graduation of my oldest happen right smack dab in the middle of the upcoming merge window, so I might be effectively offline for a few days there. If worst comes to worst, I’ll extend it to make it all work, but I don’t think it will be needed. Anyway, on to 5.1 itself. The past week has been pretty calm, and the final patch from rc6 is not all that …

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Batocera.Linux OS Combines Kodi & Retro Gaming for Raspberry Pi & ODROID Boards

batocera.linux

There are already several ways to run retro games on development boards, with for example RetroPie, and derivatives like RetrOrangePi, Lakka and Recalbox. Batocera.Linux is another option that I had never heard about so far, and works on PCs, as well as Raspberry Pi and ODROID boards, with ODROID-N2 support having been added very recently. batocera.linux operating system can easily be run from a USB flash drive on your computer without altering your existing OS, while it will boot from a standard microSD card on Raspberry Pi and ODROID boards. Beside retro-gaming support, the OS also includes Kodi media center for playing videos, or listening to music. You may even play games in it since retro-gaming support was added in Kodi 18. The partial compatibility table above shows all platforms have a different level of support, and for Intel hardware support more emulators than Arm based boards. The Orange arrow means it works but performance is poor, and the yellow …

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Linux 5.0 Release – Main Changes, Arm, MIPS & RISC-V Architectures

Linux 5.0 Changelog

Linus Torvalds has just released Linux 5.0: Ok, so the last week of the 5.0 release wasn’t entirely quiet, but it’s a lot smaller than rc8 was, and on the whole I’m happy that I delayed a week and did an rc8. It turns out that the actual patch that I talked about in the rc8 release wasn’t the worrisome bug I had thought: yes, we had an uninitialized variable, but the reason we hadn’t immediately noticed it due to a warning was that the way gcc works, the compiler had basically initialized it for us to the right value. So the same thing that caused not the lack of warning, also effectively meant that the fix was a no-op in practice. But hey, we had other bug fixes come in that actually did matter, and the uninitialized variable _could_ have been a problem with another compiler. Regardless – all is well that ends well. We have more than a …

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