Here in the blog there have already been several mentions about CoreBoot, which is a very interesting project, as it has aroused the interest of many developers and even the NSA. And is that The launch of the new version of the project Core Boot 4.11, under which a free alternative to proprietary firmware and BIOS is being developed. 130 developers participated in the creation of the new version and prepared 1630 changes.
For those who are still unaware of CoreBoot, you should know that this is an open source alternative to traditional Basic Entry-Exit System (BIOS) which was already on MS-DOS 80s PCs and replacing it with UEFI (Unified Extensible). CoreBoot it is also a free proprietary firmware analog and is available for full verification and auditing. CoreBoot is used as base firmware for hardware initialization and boot coordination.
Including graphics chip initialization, PCIe, SATA, USB, RS232. At the same time, the binary FSP 2.0 (Intel Firmware Support Package) components and the binary firmware for the Intel ME subsystem, which are required to initialize and launch the CPU and chipset, are integrated into CoreBoot.
What's new in CoreBoot 4.11?
In this new version of CoreBoot 4.11, most of the support for various processors, software and hardware components, among which we can find the added support for 25 motherboards:
- Amd padmelon.
- Asus p5ql-em.
- Google akemi, Arcada cml, Damu, Dood, Drallion, Dratini, Jacuzzi, Juniper, Kakadu, Kappa, puff, Sarien cml, Treeya and Trogdor.
- Lenovo r60, t410, thinkpad t440p and x301.
- Razer blade-stealth kb.
- Siemens mc-appl6.
- Supermicro x11ssh-tf and x11ssm-f.
Besides whatEmulation support was added in QEMU-AARCH64 and the code cleaning continues.
Removed the connection of additional header files. The code associated with support for Intel chipsets has been unified, typical functions are performed in general drivers.
The ad also mentions that Much work has been done to improve support for Intel chips based on microarchitecture Kaby Lake and Cannon Lakeas well as the series chips AMD Picasso. Improved chip support Mediatek 8173 ARM, chips based on RISC-V and some older chipsets like Intel GM45 and Via VX900. It is proposed Initial support for Intel Tiger Lake chips and Qualcomm SC7180 SoC.
Another novelty that stands out in CoreBoot 4.11 is the improved support for verified boot mode (vboot), which Google uses on Chromebooks.
With this the verified boot can now be used with devices not specifically adapted for vboot. For example, boot verification support has been added for various Lenovo laptops, Siemens industrial computers, and Open Compute project systems. Work continued to add measured boot technology to vboot.
Of the other changes that stand out:
- Removed support for outdated SoCs based on the Allwinner A10 processor, for example Cubieboard discontinued support.
- Deprecated and will soon be phased out of support for MIPS architecture and AMD 12h generation chips (AGESA).
- In libpayload provided kernels support USB3.
- The libgfxinit library, which is responsible for initializing the graphics subsystem, provides dynamic CDClk (Core Display Clock) configuration to support high-resolution displays without static definition of the configuration. Improved support for DP and eDP ports (for example, DisplayPort support has been added for Intel Ibex Peak chips with Ironlake GPUs).
- Added support for Intel Kaby, Amber, Coffee, and Whiskey Lake.
If you want to know more about the changes in this version of CoreBoot, you can consult them In the following link.
Finally, for those interested in being able to obtain this new version of CoreBoot they can do it from their download section, which can be found on the official website of the project.
In addition to that in it they will be able to find documentation and more information about the project.