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Pi 4 firmware, software stability improvements

Posted: Wed Jul 03, 2019 8:27 pm
by techskies11
Since the new pi4 has released I’ve seen that it doesn’t perform as well and it needs some improvement, are they able to improve the stability and performance of the pi4 or is this just what it is?

Re: Pi 4 firmware, software stability improvements

Posted: Wed Jul 03, 2019 8:29 pm
by joan
Your question is a bit light on detail. What software is not stable?

Re: Pi 4 firmware, software stability improvements

Posted: Wed Jul 03, 2019 8:31 pm
by jamesh
The VC firmware is upgradeable, the kernel is upgradable, the bootloader is upgradeable, the VLI USB chip firmware is upgradeable.

Just like all previous Pi's, when we have improvements we will add them.

Keep up to date using `apt`.

Re: Pi 4 firmware, software stability improvements

Posted: Wed Jul 03, 2019 8:33 pm
by W. H. Heydt
jamesh wrote:
Wed Jul 03, 2019 8:31 pm
The VC firmware is upgradeable, the kernel is upgradable, the bootloader is upgradeable, the VLI USB chip firmware is upgradeable.

Just like all previous Pi's, when we have improvements we will add them.

Keep up to date using `apt`.
Is the plan have apt/apt-get be able to update the contents of things like the EEPROM?

Re: Pi 4 firmware, software stability improvements

Posted: Wed Jul 03, 2019 8:36 pm
by jamesh
W. H. Heydt wrote:
Wed Jul 03, 2019 8:33 pm
jamesh wrote:
Wed Jul 03, 2019 8:31 pm
The VC firmware is upgradeable, the kernel is upgradable, the bootloader is upgradeable, the VLI USB chip firmware is upgradeable.

Just like all previous Pi's, when we have improvements we will add them.

Keep up to date using `apt`.
Is the plan have apt/apt-get be able to update the contents of things like the EEPROM?
No, that is regarded as a special case, and we don't want people who might not need a update getting one automatically. We will provide VLI and bootloader updates separately, but these are expected to be quite rare.

Re: Pi 4 firmware, software stability improvements

Posted: Wed Jul 03, 2019 9:39 pm
by techskies11
Right I’ve seen HD video streams laggy and 4K monitors not smooth, I’m wondering if that’s just because the GPU is not the best, or if 4K was optional but experimental etc,

Re: Pi 4 firmware, software stability improvements

Posted: Wed Jul 03, 2019 10:00 pm
by jamesh
techskies11 wrote:
Wed Jul 03, 2019 9:39 pm
Right I’ve seen HD video streams laggy and 4K monitors not smooth, I’m wondering if that’s just because the GPU is not the best, or if 4K was optional but experimental etc,
Just some bugs that have been or will be fixed.

Re: Pi 4 firmware, software stability improvements

Posted: Wed Jul 03, 2019 10:04 pm
by jbeale
techskies11 wrote:
Wed Jul 03, 2019 9:39 pm
Right I’ve seen HD video streams laggy and 4K monitors not smooth, I’m wondering if that’s just because the GPU is not the best, or if 4K was optional but experimental etc,
It's my understanding that currently the GPU hardware decoding is disabled for in-browser video playback (eg. YouTube) due to some software issue, which is expected to be fixed at some point.

Re: Pi 4 firmware, software stability improvements

Posted: Wed Jul 03, 2019 10:20 pm
by techskies11
Is there 3D acceleration for Linux

Re: Pi 4 firmware, software stability improvements

Posted: Thu Jul 04, 2019 3:11 am
by techskies11
I wonder if the USB 3 port can be improved to work at full speed since it doesn’t allow the full or regular performance of the USB 3 port,

Re: Pi 4 firmware, software stability improvements

Posted: Thu Jul 04, 2019 3:22 am
by jbeale
techskies11 wrote:
Thu Jul 04, 2019 3:11 am
I wonder if the USB 3 port can be improved to work at full speed since it doesn’t allow the full or regular performance of the USB 3 port,
Is this a theoretical or a practical question? The hardware connection in the Pi4 between the USB3 chip and the SoC is a single lane PCIe Gen2. It runs at 4Gbit/s which slightly slower than the 5Gbit/s max theoretical speed of USB3 (although a vast improvement from USB2) and needless to say, that cannot be changed without major hardware change. But it is rarely the case that the actual measured throughput of any interface matches the theoretical maximum, so in practice you have to compare real data rates which are affected by many more factors throughout the system. I think the question would be more meaningful if it referenced real data.

Re: Pi 4 firmware, software stability improvements

Posted: Thu Jul 04, 2019 3:47 am
by techskies11
Thanks, because I know the link is lower then regular USB 3 then it makes sense why it doesn’t perform as a regular USB 3.0 connection, especially with ssd drives and m.2 drives which I’ve seen cap out around 500 mbps or so when usually they go higher etc, oh well at lest it’s still faster then 2.0, it’s just when I see 3.0 i automatically assume it can run ssd drives as fast as I can if I was using them on my 3.0 port on my laptop

Re: Pi 4 firmware, software stability improvements

Posted: Thu Jul 04, 2019 6:01 am
by Gavinmc42
It's my understanding that currently the GPU hardware decoding is disabled for in-browser video playback (eg. YouTube) due to some software issue, which is expected to be fixed at some point.
Not sure what format YT is in but I wasted a whole day watching YT's on a 1280x1024 screen with no issues.

I believe the Arms are fast enough to use open source 264/265 software based decoders.
Lots of library etc seem to be missing for the VC6 I expect they will trickle through when they start working?

For the simple things I am doing (desktop replacement) the Pi4 with Buster is pretty stable.
I don't actually have a Desktop at home with USB3.0, it is too old, now I have USB3.0
Plus when I get the 4B4 I will have twice as much ram as the Celeron box :lol:

Everything is so much better and faster, complaining about stuff that will work one day it pointless.

Re: Pi 4 firmware, software stability improvements

Posted: Thu Jul 04, 2019 6:42 am
by techskies11
Thanks lol I guess the pi 4 is stable enough, much better then a celeron lol

Re: Pi 4 firmware, software stability improvements

Posted: Thu Jul 04, 2019 7:14 am
by Gavinmc42
Thanks lol I guess the pi 4 is stable enough, much better then a celeron lol
Quieter too, very strange doing PC stuff without fan noise.
With just a heatsink it even runs cooler than the Celeron :o
Played IOQuake, Doom etc on the Pi4, just confirmed I'm too old and too slow to need a super fast gaming box.
Kid whipped my a... in SuperTuxKart.
They all seemed stable to me, graphics needs some tweaking, driver upgrades?

Re: Pi 4 firmware, software stability improvements

Posted: Thu Jul 04, 2019 7:52 am
by caldimerda
jbeale wrote:
Wed Jul 03, 2019 10:04 pm
techskies11 wrote:
Wed Jul 03, 2019 9:39 pm
Right I’ve seen HD video streams laggy and 4K monitors not smooth, I’m wondering if that’s just because the GPU is not the best, or if 4K was optional but experimental etc,
It's my understanding that currently the GPU hardware decoding is disabled for in-browser video playback (eg. YouTube) due to some software issue, which is expected to be fixed at some point.
It would be interesting to know a little more about that. I re-enabled all the Chromium GPU hardware settings in my Buster build last night but haven't given it a full test yet. Am I about to fall foul of a known issue?

Re: Pi 4 firmware, software stability improvements

Posted: Thu Jul 04, 2019 9:10 am
by jamesh
caldimerda wrote:
Thu Jul 04, 2019 7:52 am
jbeale wrote:
Wed Jul 03, 2019 10:04 pm
techskies11 wrote:
Wed Jul 03, 2019 9:39 pm
Right I’ve seen HD video streams laggy and 4K monitors not smooth, I’m wondering if that’s just because the GPU is not the best, or if 4K was optional but experimental etc,
It's my understanding that currently the GPU hardware decoding is disabled for in-browser video playback (eg. YouTube) due to some software issue, which is expected to be fixed at some point.
It would be interesting to know a little more about that. I re-enabled all the Chromium GPU hardware settings in my Buster build last night but haven't given it a full test yet. Am I about to fall foul of a known issue?
Depends what you try to do - vidio playback may fail. We found a bug in the CMA memory handling to do with how some DMA was done. This is now fixed internally and currently being tested.Should mean that HW chromium acceleration can be turned on giving very good webGL performance and much improved video playback.

Re: Pi 4 firmware, software stability improvements

Posted: Thu Jul 04, 2019 9:53 am
by caldimerda
jamesh wrote:
Thu Jul 04, 2019 9:10 am
caldimerda wrote:
Thu Jul 04, 2019 7:52 am
jbeale wrote:
Wed Jul 03, 2019 10:04 pm

It's my understanding that currently the GPU hardware decoding is disabled for in-browser video playback (eg. YouTube) due to some software issue, which is expected to be fixed at some point.
It would be interesting to know a little more about that. I re-enabled all the Chromium GPU hardware settings in my Buster build last night but haven't given it a full test yet. Am I about to fall foul of a known issue?
Depends what you try to do - vidio playback may fail. We found a bug in the CMA memory handling to do with how some DMA was done. This is now fixed internally and currently being tested.Should mean that HW chromium acceleration can be turned on giving very good webGL performance and much improved video playback.
Hi James
Thanks for the update. Forgive the daft question but I can't see the Pi now to check for myself - is this in the 4.19 Kernel?
Thanks, David

Re: Pi 4 firmware, software stability improvements

Posted: Thu Jul 04, 2019 9:57 am
by jamesh
caldimerda wrote:
Thu Jul 04, 2019 9:53 am
jamesh wrote:
Thu Jul 04, 2019 9:10 am
caldimerda wrote:
Thu Jul 04, 2019 7:52 am


It would be interesting to know a little more about that. I re-enabled all the Chromium GPU hardware settings in my Buster build last night but haven't given it a full test yet. Am I about to fall foul of a known issue?
Depends what you try to do - vidio playback may fail. We found a bug in the CMA memory handling to do with how some DMA was done. This is now fixed internally and currently being tested.Should mean that HW chromium acceleration can be turned on giving very good webGL performance and much improved video playback.
Hi James
Thanks for the update. Forgive the daft question but I can't see the Pi now to check for myself - is this in the 4.19 Kernel?
Thanks, David
We have not released the fix yet, currently being code reviewed. It will go in to the current kernel when ready.

Re: Pi 4 firmware, software stability improvements

Posted: Thu Jul 04, 2019 11:10 am
by caldimerda
jamesh wrote:
Thu Jul 04, 2019 9:57 am
caldimerda wrote:
Thu Jul 04, 2019 9:53 am
jamesh wrote:
Thu Jul 04, 2019 9:10 am


Depends what you try to do - vidio playback may fail. We found a bug in the CMA memory handling to do with how some DMA was done. This is now fixed internally and currently being tested.Should mean that HW chromium acceleration can be turned on giving very good webGL performance and much improved video playback.
Hi James
Thanks for the update. Forgive the daft question but I can't see the Pi now to check for myself - is this in the 4.19 Kernel?
Thanks, David
We have not released the fix yet, currently being code reviewed. It will go in to the current kernel when ready.
Thanks James. That's great. Just wanted to know where to keep an eye on for commits.

Re: Pi 4 firmware, software stability improvements

Posted: Fri Jul 05, 2019 7:21 am
by caldimerda
caldimerda wrote:
Thu Jul 04, 2019 11:10 am
jamesh wrote:
Thu Jul 04, 2019 9:57 am
caldimerda wrote:
Thu Jul 04, 2019 9:53 am


Hi James
Thanks for the update. Forgive the daft question but I can't see the Pi now to check for myself - is this in the 4.19 Kernel?
Thanks, David
We have not released the fix yet, currently being code reviewed. It will go in to the current kernel when ready.
Thanks James. That's great. Just wanted to know where to keep an eye on for commits.
Aha. So I saw some commits about CMA/DMA and tried the latest firmware in hope. But no, Chromium is still slower than on the Pi 3B. So I'm hoping this is still a work in progress somewhere?

Re: Pi 4 firmware, software stability improvements

Posted: Fri Jul 05, 2019 8:33 am
by jamesh
caldimerda wrote:
Fri Jul 05, 2019 7:21 am
caldimerda wrote:
Thu Jul 04, 2019 11:10 am
jamesh wrote:
Thu Jul 04, 2019 9:57 am


We have not released the fix yet, currently being code reviewed. It will go in to the current kernel when ready.
Thanks James. That's great. Just wanted to know where to keep an eye on for commits.
Aha. So I saw some commits about CMA/DMA and tried the latest firmware in hope. But no, Chromium is still slower than on the Pi 3B. So I'm hoping this is still a work in progress somewhere?
We have not released the fix yet, currently being code reviewed. It will go in to the current kernel when ready.

Re: Pi 4 firmware, software stability improvements

Posted: Fri Jul 05, 2019 10:54 am
by 6by9
Merged yesterday - https://github.com/Hexxeh/rpi-firmware/ ... 2203d125f8 (only the firmware changes were reverted in the followup commit, and this was a kernel only change).
Note that this will not automatically remove the --disable-gpu flag from Chromium.

Re: Pi 4 firmware, software stability improvements

Posted: Fri Jul 05, 2019 11:57 am
by caldimerda
6by9 wrote:
Fri Jul 05, 2019 10:54 am
Merged yesterday - https://github.com/Hexxeh/rpi-firmware/ ... 2203d125f8 (only the firmware changes were reverted in the followup commit, and this was a kernel only change).
Note that this will not automatically remove the --disable-gpu flag from Chromium.
I updated to the latest firmware at 1900 UK time - after the commits. Switched off disable-gpu and got some some green "Hardware accelerated" options in Chrome://gpu - but still "Hardware accelerated but at reduced performance" against WebGL and "unavailable" against WebGL2 - as opposed to "Hardware Accelerated" against both webgl and webgl2 on my 3b+.

And Youtube in Chromium ran like a dog on the pi 4 :-(

Re: Pi 4 firmware, software stability improvements

Posted: Fri Jul 05, 2019 1:23 pm
by jamesh
caldimerda wrote:
Fri Jul 05, 2019 11:57 am
6by9 wrote:
Fri Jul 05, 2019 10:54 am
Merged yesterday - https://github.com/Hexxeh/rpi-firmware/ ... 2203d125f8 (only the firmware changes were reverted in the followup commit, and this was a kernel only change).
Note that this will not automatically remove the --disable-gpu flag from Chromium.
I updated to the latest firmware at 1900 UK time - after the commits. Switched off disable-gpu and got some some green "Hardware accelerated" options in Chrome://gpu - but still "Hardware accelerated but at reduced performance" against WebGL and "unavailable" against WebGL2 - as opposed to "Hardware Accelerated" against both webgl and webgl2 on my 3b+.

And Youtube in Chromium ran like a dog on the pi 4 :-(
I'm just trying the latest rpi-update firmware, and can play back on a 1080p60 display quite happily 720 and 1080p videos from YouTube in Chromium.

GPU settings:

Graphics Feature Status
Canvas: Hardware accelerated
Flash: Hardware accelerated
Flash Stage3D: Hardware accelerated
Flash Stage3D Baseline profile: Hardware accelerated
Compositing: Hardware accelerated
Multiple Raster Threads: Enabled
Native GpuMemoryBuffers: Software only. Hardware acceleration disabled
Out-of-process Rasterization: Disabled
Hardware Protected Video Decode: Unavailable
Rasterization: Software only. Hardware acceleration disabled
Skia Renderer: Disabled
Surface Control: Disabled
Surface Synchronization: Enabled
Video Decode: Unavailable
Viz Service Display Compositor: Enabled
WebGL: Hardware accelerated <<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<
WebGL2: Hardware accelerated <<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<