[Beowulf] Bolts of Thunder and Upgraded desktop interconnect silicon....

Christopher Samuel samuel at unimelb.edu.au
Mon Jun 10 17:39:06 PDT 2013

Hash: SHA1

On 11/06/13 08:57, James Cuff wrote:

> we appear to have a second version of a 20GB/s consumer connection
>  (latency unknown), and yet this search:

No idea about the future, but the immediate history of Thunderbolt
doesn't seem particularly encouraging, as Matt Garrett recounts:


# Unfortunately that's as far as I've got. I'd been hoping that
# everything beyond this was just PCIe hotplug, but it seems not.
# Apple's Thunderbolt driver is rather too large to just be handling
# ACPI events, and this document on Apple's website makes it pretty
# clear that there's OS involvement in events and device configuration.
# Booting with a device connected means that the firmware does the
# setup, but if you want to support hotplug then the OS needs to know
# how to do that - and Linux doesn't.
# Getting this far involved rather a lot of irritation at Apple for
# conspiring to do things in a range of non-standard ways, but it turns
# out that the real villains of the piece are Intel. The Thunderbolt
# controller in the Apples is an Intel part - the 82524EF, according to
# Apple. Given Intel's enthusiasm for Linux and their generally high
# levels of engagement with the Linux development community, it's
# disappointing[1] to discover that this controller has been shipping
# for over a year with (a) no Linux driver and (b) no documentation
# that would let anyone write such a driver. It's not even mentioned on
# Intel's website. So, thanks Intel. You're awful.
# Anyway. This was my attempt to spend a few days doing something more
# relaxing than secure boot, and all I ended up with was eczema and
# liver pain. Lesson learned, hardware vendors hate you even more than
# firmware vendors do.
# [1] By which I mean grotesquely infuriating

- -- 
 Christopher Samuel        Senior Systems Administrator
 VLSCI - Victorian Life Sciences Computation Initiative
 Email: samuel at unimelb.edu.au Phone: +61 (0)3 903 55545
 http://www.vlsci.org.au/      http://twitter.com/vlsci

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