It’s snowing in the northeast U.S., which makes me happy! Keep going, sky!
- Richard Stallman’s requirements when giving talks/lectures. (via) I read this not unreasonable but long list and thought about it. Every requirement on there probably has an experience/story behind it… (“If you can find a host for me that has a friendly parrot, I will be very very glad.” – so this)
- Continuing the famous computer people trend of dying, John McCarthy died. He invented LISP (((insert parentheses joke here))) among other things, and wrote this story. (also via)
- I mentioned issues over the time zone database previously, but there’s a new home, and we’re still getting updates in DragonFly.
- And, it’s Dennis Ritchie Day. (via) That linked article does a good job of describing just how universal his influence has been.
- 64-bit ARM chips. (design PDF) This is just the announcement, but I bet these will be a good porting target in the next year or two if these designs wander out into the general market. (via many places)
- I’ve linked to similar deals before, but this one’s quite cheap: the Power Squid power strip sold as surplus. I find the design and name both great.
- Speaking of names, “I think Dragonfly is the coolest, cuz of the name.“
- I like this article on web advertising just because it has blocked-out screenshots that show exactly how much space gets used up by ads.
Unrelated link of the week: Manly Guys Doing Manly Things. Most of the jokes revolve around games you may or may not know, with the occasional realistic experience that I’ve had myself.
That would be a recent ATI card, though I don’t know exactly which model name. Samuel Greear has imported David Shao’s DRM work, originally for Summer of Code, last year. Most newer Radeons should work (?).
I did not realize this, but MMC/SD cards are not supported in the default DragonFly kernel. Or at least, they weren’t until now. (also committed to 2.12)
Update: PCI-based MMC/SD readers, specifically. USB ones were already recognized as umass devices.
It looks like Sepherosa Ziehau is working on hardware support being split up per-CPU, judging by this commit – one of many, recently.
Some newer laptops have Intel integrated video chipsets that require GEM/KMS to work well; they are supported by the vesa driver in X, but performance isn’t great. Johannes Hofmann found this out the hard way. GEM/KMS support is on the way for various BSDs, but it’s not here yet. Just be aware of this if shopping for a new laptop in the next little while…
Tim Bisson’s work on TRIM support has been committed. I don’t know if it will show in 2.12, but it’s off by default so it would seem a safe move.
Sascha Wildner has updated ndis(4), the wrapper that makes Windows network drivers usable on DragonFly, with an extensive description of what’s changed.
Sascha Wildner has added safe(4), which will help if you have a SafeNet chip on your crypto accelerator card. Untested, so you know what to do if you have this hardware.
If DragonFly/x86_64 fails to install on your system, but DragonFly/i386 works, try again. Sepherosa Ziehau has a fix for the keyboard controller that may make x86_64 systems boot DragonFly when previously they did not.
Tim Bisson has posted a new batch of patches putting TRIM support into DragonFly. He has a graph in there too!
If you have a HighPoint RocketRAID 4321 or 4322 model, Sascha Wildner’s just added support for them in the hptiop(4) driver, taken from FreeBSD.
It sounds like I’m about to mention something pirate-themed, doesn’t it? Brendan Kosowski needs the rum(4) driver, for (I think) Ralink RT2501USB and RT2601USB wireless. He’s willing to offer a bounty of $100 to anyone who can get it working before the next DragonFly release. Work on it if you can port, or add money if you can use it.
Sepherosa Ziehau continues his relentless network feature improvement/porting: this time, adding the ability for DragonFly to recognize more varieties of Broadcom hardware.
Sepherosa Ziehau has been making a lot more changes to the msk(4) driver for Marvell Ethernet chipsets. I link to this commit adding support for Yukon Supreme cards, but there’s a great deal of work from him, recently added.
Sascha Wildner has committed version 3.981 of the mfi(4) driver, for a variety of LSI MegaRAID SAS 92XX devices. Read the commit message for details on the model numbers.
Sepherosa Ziehau has added support for a wider range of Marvell network interfaces; specifically the chips on board, not just card models. If you’ve got the right chips but they aren’t working for you, you know what to do.
17 different ISA device drivers have been removed by Sascha Wildner. The commit message has device descriptions. This may mean you need to change your kernel configuration file on the next buildkernel, since some of them were in the GENERIC kernel. If you need any of them, speak up. (I don’t think I’ve ever used any of them. Oh darn.)
Thanks to Michael Neumann, there’s more supported Broadcom network card chipsets. There’s some wierdness in setup, though, so look at his commit message.
Tim Bisson has another status report on supporting TRIM in DragonFly. It supports UFS and Hammer slices, and trimming swap too. I’m not sure what else could be done; that sounds pretty complete to me… In any case, if you have a SSD, his code is available to try right now.
If you happen to use a LG P-500 smartphone to get online via USB, as ‘Romick’ does, he’s got a patch that makes that device work under DragonFly. (Sorry, the original users@ email seems to have gone missing.)
Francois Tigeot has repeated his benchmarking, this time changing out the CPU instead of the operating system. There’s still more graphs, yay!
Francois Tigeot tested a system under both FreeBSD and DragonFly using various RAID setups with arcmsr(4) and blogbench. Hooray for graphs! Like any good benchmark, it quickly went to discussion of how the test was conducted and how the various runs differ. (Follow the thread.)
Sepherosa Ziehau has a firmware update for bce(4) (Broadcom NetXtreme II) cards. He’s been doing a lot more incidental network hardware updates I haven’t linked; thanks, Sephe!
Sepherosa Ziehau has been committing a bunch of changes for em/emx(4) and bce(4). You may have hardware that has suddenly become supported, for instance. Also, credit is due to David Christensen and Broadcom for sending hardware to test out.
Do you have a Intel PRO/Wireless 2200BG, 2225BG, or 2915ABG wireless card? The driver is iwi(4). It requires a kernel module
and some downloadable firmware, which makes it slightly more troublesome to set up. Luckily, ‘ferz’ has written up just how to get it working.
Do you have a DragonFly workstation? That you play audio on? Do you have headphones hooked up? Is it using Intel High Definition Audio? (snd_hda) Does connecting the headphones disable the system speaker?
You can probably guess exactly what I’m trying to troubleshoot given the above questions.
Here’s two items I meant to post and for some reason did not:
- Sven Gaerner posted a short description of how he migrated his DragonFly system from a hard disk to a SSD. This may be useful for anyone considering a move. Decent-sized SSDs are reaching low prices these days.
- Tim Bisson posted an update on his work on TRIM support for DragonFly. The code is available now if you’re feeling lucky.
Sepherosa Ziehau’s made it possible for uniprocessor kernels to use the LAPIC and IOAPIC functions on x86_64, which means better timer support, less need to fiddle with configs, and more supported hardware. A win all around! Set hw.lapic_enable=”0″ if there’s trouble. The same changes for i386 are on the way.
I haven’t covered recent disk encryption work evenly, here, so I’ll point at a recent discussion instead. Alex Hornung mentioned a cryptsetup(8) man page that may help, as does any dm-crypt tutorial out there on the Internet. (DragonFly has the same userland tools.) The DragonFly installer will create encrypted disks at install time, too.
The I/O APIC is now always on unless you say otherwise. This may not make a clear difference to you, but enabling that kernel option has always been a somewhat iffy thing; working for some configurations and not others. Now, it’s one less thing to worry about.
I posted something about this before, but now it’s definite: bleeding-edge users of DragonFly can boot a multiprocessor kernel on a single-processor machine.
If you’ve ever wanted to really make sure of all the network interfaces supported on your DragonFly system, you can create an exhaustive (and exhausting) list.
Samuel Greear has a totally untested update to the NVIDIA video driver available. It may not work, but it’s not like that’ll be any different than the current state of the driver.
Tim Bisson has inital TRIM support working for UFS. His lengthy posting talks about how it’s done, and shows how much it speeds things up. He’s looking for testers, so please try it if you have a SSD. (The usual warnings apply about testing code that specifically deletes things.)
For those not familiar with TRIM in SSD context, here’s the least annoying page with an explanation that I could find in a few seconds of Googling.
Francois Tigeot did some testing of various hardware RAID adapters (Areca, LSI, 3ware, and Adaptec) in DragonFly, and reported thoroughly on each. This may come as no surprise, but it sounds like Areca adapters are worth the money.
Update: There’s an updated mpt(4) driver, and the performance issues are fixed by enabling write caching.
To go along with the recently-added suggested hardware page on the DragonFly website, Francois Tigeot puts in a good word for SuperMicro boards and DragonFly, and links to some good hardware combinations.
If you have a USB printer, you may not have been able to print since the kqueue changes came in for… DragonFly 2.8? Anyway, Matthew Dillon’s made some changes to ulpt(4) that means USB and kqueue play nicely together.
Hey, it rhymes! Matthew Dillon’s added support for 4-port Gigabit Ethernet PCI-E cards from Intel. I wish I had one.
Matthew Dillon made some changes to swapcache(8). Swapcache is now able to cache a lot more data, and the result is that general disk performance for _all_ disks is accelerated by an included SSD using swapcache. Performance previously restricted to all-SSD systems or serious RAID setups is now possible with much less investment.
In addition to that, the long-term wear on the SSD appears to be less of a problem than expected.
Chris Turner is looking to implement something similar to OpenBSD’s mount_vnd(8) operation, where virtual disks can be mounted at boot. He talks about some of the work and ideas at length. If you don’t feel like reading about it, you can instead mess with it; he has a tarball of the current state of his work linked in his message.
APIC support has been updated, so not only will some machines work better/at all with a multiprocessor kernel, more machines will boot. Not only that, but Sepherosa Ziehau has a newer version of ACPI and interrupt routing available. This is wonderful news! We’ve needed this update for some time.
Joe Talbott has some changes for both Intel and non-Intel wifi NICs; please try out his branch and report the results.
Sascha Wildner’s removed the meteor(4) code because it apparently no longer builds, and it’s unlikely anyone uses an actual video board that requires this driver, at this point. If you do, speak up.
The virtio network drivers for DragonFly (mentioned previously here, here, and here) went away. Apparently the original FreeBSD code was not supposed to be available publicly, under a BSD license, and it’s having a knock-on effect for DragonFly and probably NetBSD.
(virtio drivers, if this is an unfamiliar term, are for devices in virtual environments, as when DragonFly is running under VMWare or something similar.)
Do you have a Western Digital model 1021 external disk drive? Matthias Rampke does, and he found he had to make some USB quirk entries to get it to work reliably.
I’m going to just title these “Lazy Reading” – I end up with too much diverse information/links to fit within the title.
Tim Bisson posted new network tests contrasting the virtio driver against emulated re(4) in virtual environments. Previously, the virtio driver performed worse, but a more developed test suite seems to deliver more positive results.
Sascha Wildner is continuing his huge driver-adding streak, this time with tws(4). It’s a port of the FreeBSD driver, for “LSI 3ware 9750 series SATA/SAS RAID controllers”. The commit message has a list of individual models, and further credits.
Sascha Wildner re-added burncd(8); it still works for some people. As Matthew Dillon pointed out, cdrecord is probably the better long-term bet.
Sascha Wildner continues the driver update streak, bringing in the updated FreeBSD version of the aac(4) driver. This adds support for 40+ Adaptec AdvancedRAID cards – the aac(4) man page has a very long list.
Sascha Wildner’s added the hptmv(4) driver, for Highpoint RocketRAID 182x cards. It comes from Highpoint/FreeBSD.
Sascha Wildner has updated twe(4), Jan Lentfer has updated ldns to version 1.6.7 (changelog), and also updated pf to match the OpenBSD 4.4 version. Phew!
Happy new year!
Another bus bites the dust: EISA is no more on DragonFly. I don’t know if there’s even any system that DragonFly could boot on and would use this. Still, remove your hats and enjoy a moment of silence.
Sascha Wildner has continued his driver-adding run, bringing in mps(4). This supports various LSI Logic SAS controllers, taken from FreeBSD. Support isn’t complete or tested, but it’s enough to start with.
Tim Bisson posted a note on the progress he and Pratyush have made on a virtio driver for DragonFly, ported from NetBSD. This is for use in virtualized environments; his post links to graphs (yay!) that show the performance improvement over emulated IDE. His note also links to the code and documentation.
As Matthew Dillon works on supporting his new 48-core system, he’s written some notes on power usage and scheduling/drivers that may be worth a read.
Sepherosa Ziehau fixed a clock issue with the JMicron JMC250/JMC260 chipset, used with the jme(4) driver, and apparently JMicron helped out with hardware for testing this fix. So, thanks, Sephe, and thanks, JMicron! (buy their stuff)
Bleeding-edge DragonFly may suffer some instability issues; Matthew Dillon is making scheduler changes to accomodate larger numbers of CPUs. On the other hand: yay, better performance!
Sascha Wildner’s been on a RAID rampage lately, adding a lot of drivers. The latest is hptiop(4), which supports many of (all?) the HighPoint RocketRAID series.
Tim Darby had an error with a particular AMD AHCI chipset, and the entertaining error was:
Attempting to reinitialize the port after it had a horrible accident
This gives me a chance to link to one of my favorite error messages ever.
(The chipset works in current DragonFly, by the way.)
Matthew Dillon has made it possible to boot DragonFly on 24-CPU systems. Also, we’re currently limited to 32G of RAM. Oh, to have such limitations; I was considering myself lucky to have 4 CPUs.
Tim Darby was looking to take advantage of swapcache, and got some advice from Matthew Dillon. This led to a larger writeup that went into the mechanics and advantages of both swapcache and SSDs. The swapcache(8) page has been expanded with these notes, and I’m sure I need to buy a SSD for my next upgrade.
SSD devices have tumbled into the sub-$100 range for smaller devices; they are perfect for swapcache if you’ve got the spare SATA connector…
Sascha Wildner has added even more RAID controller support, from FreeBSD, this time in improvements to the amr(4) driver. Check the green lines in this man page diff to see what’s new.
Sascha Wildner has brought in the mfi(4) and mfiutil(8) drivers from FreeBSD, adding support for a number of different RAID controllers – including the Dell PERC 5 and PERC 6.
Sascha Wildner has updated the arcmsr(4) driver, for you Areca users out there. I think Areca was one of the vendors kind enough to test DragonFly on their hardware directly, so please consider them next time you are in the market for a SATA RAID card.
Matthew Dillon’s made several changes to improve support for AMD SB850 chipsets (for AHCI) and also for 880/890 chipsets. If you have one of these systems, it may be bootable/more reliable. Don’t start messing with the hot-plug capability yet, though.
Naoya Sugioka had trouble booting DragonFly on his Dell M4400. He updated ACPICA with this patch, and was able to boot. I link to it in case someone else with a recent Dell model (or perhaps just a laptop with the same chipset?) has the same issues.
Chris Turner is working on ral(4) support, specifically the eee901′s 2860 network chip.
Chris Turner posted details of how he gets jack (“a low-latency audio server”) to run on DragonFly. Your mileage may vary.
Antonio Huete updated psm(4) using code from FreeBSD; I don’t think it’s been committed yet but the patch is available. This will be especially valuable to you if you have a synaptics touchpad; it enables many of the functions.
Sascha Wildner has added uguru(4), from OpenBSD, to support the microcontroller on ABIT motherboards which report on temperature/fan speed/voltage.
YONETANI Tomokazu wrote out a nice explanation of acpi(4) and the myriad ACPI subsystems which can be enabled or disabled at boot time. If you do have booting problems, it’s usually ACPI, and it’s usually only one small part. Finding that small part is easier with this list.
If you were thinking of buying a Western Digital Passport USB drive, it’s supported on DragonFly, thanks to Dylan Reinhold and Alex Hornung.
Matthias Schmidt has set up a x86_64 DragonFly machine at uther.dragonflybsd.org. Anyone wanting to try 64-bit testing can use a vkernel on that machine. Mail him for an account.
Hasso Tepper posted a link to something I had only heard about when it didn’t exist in physical form: the Open Graphics Device v1. It’s possible to get one if you’re going to write support for it.
In an effort to support a new system with an AMD 880G chipset, Matthew Dillon has updated the AHCI driver. If you have SATA drives using AHCI, please test. (with any chipset, not just 880G.)
Sascha Wildner has brought in some changes to twa(4), for various 3ware RAID controllers, from FreeBSD. Also, YONETANI Tomokazu has added PCI IDs fixed up files for Adaptec ServeRAID 7x ips (4) devices.
Due to changes in networking, most of the wireless drivers in 2.7 stopped working a few days ago. Joe Talbott’s “brought back” iwi, ral, and wi. If you’re running 2.7 and using one of those drivers, it should be safe, relatively, to upgrade to a newer 2.7.
Well, technically not ripped out, just serialized roughly. This means if you update your DragonFly 2.7 machine in the next few days, the wireless drivers may not work, except for (I think) ath(4). They should return, better, by next week.