With the X.Org Developers Conference 2021 coming up, they've now announced that the initial program schedule is up and there's a fun sounding talk from AMD developer Ray Huang on working with Valve on new performance scaling design for AMD CPUs.
It's not a big surprise to see work being done in this area, considering that the upcoming Steam Deck will be based on a custom AMD Zen 2 design with 8 RDNA 2 CUs for the graphics. Performance on such a device is going to make or break it and so Valve appearing to be pushing many different areas to get it sorted and this is just one of them.
Going by the schedule, here's the full explanation of the talk for a little background:
The CPU performance scaling is one of key parts in Linux Kernel, it is to manage the CPU frequency according to kernel and processor status and widely used by many user mode application to talk to the processors. The system information APIs in Wine will use the CPU performance scaling interfaces to manage the multi-core processor schedule timing compatibilities from windows application to Linux environment for VKD3D-Proton (the full Direct3D 12 API on top of Vulkan) on Steam. The original CPU performance scaling module is based on the legacy kernel common ACPI cpufreq driver on AMD processors. We found it was not very performance/power efficiency for modern AMD platforms. So this talk is to introduce a new CPU performance scaling design for AMD platform which has better performance per watt scaling on such as 3D game like Horizon Zero Dawn with VKD3D-Proton on Steam.
The idea is inspired by co-working with Valve software guys for tuning animation slow down problem (https://github.com/ValveSoftware/Proton/issues/4125) of VKD3D-Proton on steam.
While it's clear the focus here is on performance for VKD3D-Proton, the Direct3D 12 to Vulkan translation layer, it's likely plenty of other performance focused applications (and games) could benefit from the work being done.
The talk will happen on 17 Sep 2021. You can see the full details of the whole XDC 2021 on the official website.