The continuing flow of updates from AMD, to further optimise and enhance Ryzen processors, are welcome to see. AMD's community updates since the Ryzen launch, penned by Technical marketer Robert Hallock, are of particular note. Yesterday Hallock published the fourth such update since the launch of Ryzen. The big feature being trumpeted this time around is the upcoming AGESA v18.104.22.168 update which will provide better handling of overclocked RAM on the Ryzen platform.
Current motherboard BIOS files from AMD partners are based upon AGESA v22.214.171.124. If you don't already know, AGESA is an acronym for 'AMD Generic Encapsulated System Architecture', and it is important core of the BIOS which initialises AMD x86-64 processors during boot time. AGESA v126.96.36.199 began beta testing earlier in May and is nearing release candidate status for third parties to start implementing in regular BIOS updates. Meanwhile some motherboards, like the Aorus pictured below, are already compatible with public beta BIOS files based upon AGESA v188.8.131.52.
With the AGESA update to 184.108.40.206 applied you should experience improved RAM module support and greater reliability, according to Hallock. AMD has added "26 new parameters that can improve the compatibility and reliability of DRAM, especially for memory that does not follow the industry-standard JEDEC specifications." In the community update there is a table listing these 26 parameters if you are interested in the minutiae. To summarise the benefits to be gained - it will be more straightforward to use DDR4-3200 modules or faster on Ryzen platforms.
Another improvement in AGESA 220.127.116.11 is fresh support for PCI Express Access Control Services (ACS) which will be a boon to virtualisation. Hallock states that the fresh ACS support will be especially useful for users that want 3D-accelerated graphics inside a virtual machine. For example in a 2x GPU equipped machine "a host Linux OS and a Windows VM both can have dedicated graphics cards," providing near-native performance.
AMD at Computex
In one other AMD news nugget today, the firm has announced its hour-long press conference and webcast schedule at Computex. The event begins on Wednesday, 31st May, 2017 at 10 a.m. Taiwan time, that's 3 a.m. here in the UK. AMD will be highlighting its "new products and PC designs" and sharing "never-before-seen hardware demonstrations".