I have to admit it: I just couldn't resist building a computer based on the Kaveri AMD APU A10-7850.
The challange is to run Linux on it and in particular Slackware. I started with Slackware 14.1 and everything was nearly fine.
I had only some problem on the audio. The Audio was working perfectly from command line (alsamixer) but by default the system was picking up another device with the same name.
However, this has been fixed using Slackware 14.2. With Slackware 14.1 I also managed to install the fglrx driver and coding using openCL.
With Slackware 14.2 this is not working anymore but I'm still working on it. The old driver is too old for the new Xorg and the new driver didn't work at the first attempt.
However, openCL apart, with both versions of Slackware the graphic performance are great considering this is a cheap desktop that can run Ultra 4K video without problems.
The motherboard I have used is the GIGABYTE GA-F2A88XN-WIFI: years ago there was an issue with the BIOS that is now solved so I didn't have any problem installing the Kaveri on the FM2+ socket.
The interfaces worth mentioning are:
4 USB 2.0
2 USB 3.0
1 Gb Ethernet
5 Configurable Analog Audio I/O
1 Digital audio
Wifi Antenna connector
Installed 16GB (2x 8) DDR3 2133MHz but the motherboard supports up to 64GB, if only one could find a 2x 32GB.Originally I purchased an Hydro H100 i to cool the APU, but I couldn?t fit it in: one of its fans was too close to the motherboard?s connectors.
Anyway I left one fan on one side and the standard fan on the top of the CPU.After installing the it87 module, sensors seems to suggest everything is fine, though temp2 and temp3 I believe are not connected to anything (is there any Intel Control Interface on an AMD?).
Adapter: ISA adapter
in0: +0.49 V (min = +0.00 V, max = +3.06 V)
in1: +1.52 V (min = +0.00 V, max = +3.06 V)
in2: +2.02 V (min = +0.00 V, max = +3.06 V)
in3: +2.04 V (min = +0.00 V, max = +3.06 V)
in4: +2.02 V (min = +0.00 V, max = +3.06 V)
in5: +2.23 V (min = +0.00 V, max = +3.06 V)
in6: +2.23 V (min = +0.00 V, max = +3.06 V)
3VSB: +3.31 V (min = +0.00 V, max = +6.12 V)
Vbat: +3.00 V
fan1: 2242 RPM (min = 0 RPM)
fan2: 1445 RPM (min = 0 RPM)
fan3: 0 RPM (min = 0 RPM)
fan4: 0 RPM (min = 0 RPM)
fan5: 0 RPM (min = 0 RPM)
temp1: +48.0°C (low = +127.0°C, high = +127.0°C) sensor = thermistor
temp2: -8.0°C (low = +127.0°C, high = +127.0°C) sensor = thermistor
temp3: +26.0°C (low = +127.0°C, high = +127.0°C) sensor = Intel PECI
With Slackware 14.1 I had two kernels to chose at the ELILO prompt:
- 3.10.17 (original from 14.1)
- 3.10.17-rt12 (real time version I obtained patching the original kernel)
With Slackware 14.2 I'm runnig the orginal 4.4.14 kernel.
Note that in order to boot the new kernel I had to add an additional otpion to the kernel bootline:
With Slackware 14.1 I had no problem installing AMD Catalyst Omega 14.12 and the SDK V3.0-0-13.50 Beta.
I know glxgears is not a proper benchmark but before installing the AMD driver was giving me about 600FPS.
After installing the driver, I've got more than 5000FPS (higher numbers using Xfce rather than KDE)
Slackware 14.2 comes with a kernel 4.4.14 and Xorg 1.18.3: AMD Catalist supports kernel up to 3.19 and XServer up to 1.17, and this might explain why doesn't build fglrx driver.
I'm still looking at it.