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Re: New POWER9 machines for the Guix build farm?

From: dftxbs3e
Subject: Re: New POWER9 machines for the Guix build farm?
Date: Sun, 1 Dec 2019 21:35:29 +0100
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux ppc64le; rv:68.0) Gecko/20100101 Thunderbird/68.1.1


There is libre firmware being worked on, latest news say that it does work but some features are not implemented. I have not tested that firmware however.

There is a contest organized by RaptorCS to liberate the firmware:

And here's the ongoing work:

An interesting thing to note is that 10Gbit network cards from the same vendor (Broadcom) are implemented fully with hardware ASICs and do not require firmware at all. So that's a work around to the problem. source: developer of the libre firmware.


On 11/29/19 1:50 PM, Marco van Hulten wrote:

On 29 Nov 09:25 dftxbs3e wrote:
I'm really happy to hear this! I also do own a POWER9 machine.

I have a Talos II with 2x 8 SMT4 cores POWER9 DD2.2 CPUs (64 threads),
64GB of RAM and an AMD WX7100 GPU (amdgpu libre driver).

I run Fedora on it since more than a year now, it's been my main
workstation without any major issue.
It's great to hear of such an experience!  I have an amd64 server at
home that makes quite a bit of noise and, standing next to the server,
an amd64 workstation that makes even more noise, both of which are over
10 years old.  I am considering replacing both systems for a single
Talos II.

According to the mainboard specifications [1], Ethernet is driven by a
proprietary chip (Broadcom BCM5719).  Is there libre firmware that is
shown to work reliably?

I guess it should be because it is FSF-certified to Respect Your
Freedom, but could someone confirm this specifically for the network


I'm happy to provide assistance, I encourage GNU Guix developers to join
#talos-workstation on Freenode's IRC, we have a friendly active
community that is always happy to help on POWER9 matters.
Fantastic to see this work out!

The other free modern architecture, RISC-V, is that like a sort of
competitor of POWER9?  Or is it more like Talos II being the obvious
choice for a server (and workstation) because it is available now/more


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