The driver updates for the x86 platform have been submitted for the Linux 5.14 kernel under development. This area of the kernel primarily benefits from x86 laptop support on Linux, but it also has other drivers like Intel Speed Select technology and more.
There are some exciting additions this cycle to support Lenovo ThinkPad and Dell devices, as well as to further improve open-source (community-driven) support for Microsoft Surface:
– The Think-LMI driver has been queued to change the BIOS settings from Linux using the sysfs area for firmware attributes on newer Lenovo systems, including ThinkPad laptops. This is a fun addition, and the support for the sysfs firmware attributes and the initial driver to control BIOS settings from Linux were recently cited by Dell.
– Dell Hardware Privacy Support has merged to cover hardware-based kill switches on new Dell laptops for the microphone and webcam trigger assembly. They are hardware-based kill switches, with the new Linux support serving to make the status available to the user area for information purposes.
– The driver intel_skl_int3472 was merged for the handling of camera sensors on Intel devices with IPU3-connected MIPI cameras.
– Continued work on improving Microsoft Surface hardware support on Linux.
– A fix in the ISST SpeedSelect driver where its overhead affected some HPC benchmarks.
– Support for controlling the second fan on Lenovo X1 Carbon Gen9 laptop.
– The previously added ASUS NB WMI driver support for the newer ASUS ROG Zephyrus G14 and G15 laptops has been removed. The quirks were definitely wrong.
The full list of platform driver x86 changes in this cycle can be found in this PR.