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Playstation 4 running Vulkan, a new Linux based Steam Machine?

how to get steam running on a PlayStation 4 - according to hackers

So the Playstation 4 seems to be making some headlines lately. While this typically has to do with the #PS4 hardware running Linux.
Now the console can successfully run Vulkan. Hector Martin of the #Fail0verflow Team confirmed this result of #consolehacking.

Hence this confirmation comes directly from Martin’s official Twitter account. Showing how Playstation 4 can run Vulkan with the Linux 4.10 RC2 kernel. While also running AMD’s AMDGPU-PRO 16.50 graphics drivers for Linux.

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Playstation 4 running Vulkan on Linux

Martin’s tweet also shows off the Dolphin Emulator. An app used for playing GameCube and Nintendo Wii games on PC. On top of the standard Vulkan demo’s.

So up to this point Vulkan did not run very well on the PS4 until recently. Martin outlines that the PS4 GPU firmware was too old and broken. Yet it runs fine using the Bonaire firmware.


So it turns out the Bonaire firmware makes all the different though (after adjusting the size).

This progress should certainly allow PS4 owners to turn their consoles a mini Steam Machine. All running a Linux-based operating system.

Those of you who do not know, the Vulkan is the next generation of graphics API. Hence this allows better hardware interaction with recent GPU’s on Linux and Windows systems. Like OpenGL, the API targets high-performance real-time 3D graphics. So this helps to make video games better while offering more performance with less CPU usage. Similar to Direct3D 12 and Mantle.

So aside from lower CPU usage, the API is also capable of better distributing work against multiple CPU cores. Better suited for 3D, Vulkan can also render 2D graphics as well as applications.


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