back to article AMD shutters German Linux lab, gives devs the axe

Struggling chipmaker AMD has shut down its Dresden, Germany-based Operating System Research Center (OSRC), handing pink slips to most of its Linux kernel developers in the process. Rumors of the site's closure had been bouncing around the open source community for several days, owing in part to ominous posts to Linux kernel …

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  1. NoneSuch Silver badge
    Coffee/keyboard

    Bloody shame. Short-sighted and going to hurt them long term.

    VALVe should pick those guys up for work on their new open source console.

    1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
      Unhappy

      Seeing how AMD likes to have its processors in cluster applications which like to run Linux, with the competition on such clusters not Microsoft but Intel/NVIDIA, I tend to agree.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Headmaster

    Dear theregister.co.usa

    That's:

    * rumour

    * centre

    * focussed

    * optimised

    Thanks

    1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
      Big Brother

      Re: Dear theregister.co.usa

      I, for one, welcome our democracy-exporting drone-dispatching grammatical hegemon!

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Yet another reason not to buy AMD / ATI products.

  4. K
    WTF?

    They expect to sell their CPU's in servers..

    Yet they decide to cut support for the OS that the vast majority of its CPU's will run...

    Talk about biting the hand that feeds you!

    1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

      Re: They expect to sell their CPU's in servers..

      Unless the purchasing decisions are made by people whose only knowledge of the technology is from seeing the logo on the side of an F1 car.

    2. P. Lee

      Re: They expect to sell their CPU's in servers..

      In ARM servers or in mobile ARM... its still linux.

      However, perhaps the people involved were working on desktop systems, which will be mostly windows and maybe a bit of OSX.

      25 dev salaries to be in the *nix arena seems like a bargain to me.

      1. Fatman

        Re: 25 dev salaries to be in the *nix arena seems like a bargain to me.

        No, it is NOT!!!

        It is an expense that can not be justified, especially when executive bonuse$ are involved.

        </sarcasm>

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Management!

    "We need to make savings!"

    *shoots foot*

    1. P. Lee

      Re: Management!

      >"We need to make savings!"

      >*shoots foot*

      That'll save on footwear!

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    AMD chaos

    From a few conversations I have had with AMD personnel, they are clueless. No one seems to know when the next shoe will fall or what the real game plan is. Customer support is non-existent and chaos is rampant.

    The horrendous worldwide economic depression is literally destroying many small businesses. It's unbelievable the damage that is occuring. AMD will probably survive and have to rebuild all over again - assuming Rory Read has a viable plan. With all the potential minefields in this economy, any one of them could end it all for AMD. I'm sure they aren't cutting personnel because they want to. They simply have no choice and it's never easy to dismiss good people who are difficult to replace if and when the economy improves.

    This is quite an unfortunate situation as AMD currently has some excellent products and exceptional prices. By the time they recover however the market dynamics may have changed and they could be SOL.

    1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
      Devil

      Re: AMD chaos

      And then they are getting hit by an Obama Tax Bill, closely followed by QE4.5 and the demand to raise wages across the board because purchasing power has degraded. Then comes an Apple Patent Lawsuit, an IRS audit because the the money paid for the democratic campaign was a tad low, increased energy costs because of a cakewalk with Iran, demands that they replace Silicium by Unobtanium because it's greener. Then union activists riot hard as they have discovered that work is being "exported" to faraway lands. Finally an accusatory film by a fat filmmaker with a baseball cap puts the company under for good.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: AMD chaos

        All of those scenarios are possible and even likely.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @Destroy All Monsters

    Ahem. The election is over. Your guy lost. Time to move on.

    1. Epobirs

      Re: @Destroy All Monsters

      Elections have consequences. You cannot just move on without consideration for what you're about to tread in. If the last four years are any indication, hip waders will be recommended.

  8. 2Senile

    OSRC personnel were in Dresden & Austin. I'll start worrying if they can the Austin people.

  9. Nigel 11

    Out of interest ...

    Out of interest, what is it in the Linux kernel that needs to be so different for an AMD CPU compared to an Intel CPU that a specialist team from the manufacturer is needed to help write it?

    1. Epobirs

      Re: Out of interest ...

      Power management is a big one. Intel has a team that works with Microsoft and others on this, and you can see that there are two different HALs that can be installed on a new system based on the CPU brand. This is the deep down stuff the vast majority of coders never have to concern themselves about.

      A few years ago there was a big problem for some owners of certain brand machines when a Windows Service Pack was installed and left the machine DOA. This was because the OEM thought they were clever and used an image for factory prep that had both HALs visible in the system directory, something that would never happen in a normal install. They thought it more efficient to have a single image for both AMD and Intel systems. The Service Pack installer assumed the first HAL it saw was a correct indicator of what kind of machine was being updated. Trying to use the wrong HAL meant the machine died during the OS boot.

  10. TeeCee Gold badge

    "...and APUs (accelerated processing units) unaffected by the closure."

    Spot the huge clue as to AMDs future server chip direction.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    a representative from AMD reached out

    Tell us: just how long were his arms? Or did you happen to be nearby at the time?

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Don't panic!

    They're Linux devs so they'll probably work for free anyway...

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