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The TALOS II from Raptor Systems is Interesting


I thought no at first, but it looks like there is support for POWER8 in ROCm:

As for FreeBSD support @tkoham, I think it will be a while before that happens specifically, but if I understand correctly, both the ROCm and the AMDGPU drivers could be ported.

Also among the recent announcements for the TALOS II, they now added a smaller non-rack option. In talking about GPU choices, they also mentioned “integrated 2D VGA graphics”, which makes me wonder what the chip behind this is. In my ignorance, I had at first assumed that the VGA DE-15 connector on the mainboard was something for the BNC, but it is just for the mainboard graphics.

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There’s early work on a foundation for making this possible, but ‘could’ does not necessarily include ‘working well.’

The bsd core team generally has to budget development for the widest market. It’s a smaller community, so it makes more sense not to duplicate work. Right now, bhyve, iocage/iohyve, and the base are the most important projects to them. AMD support will only hit a high priority when their marketshare reaches close to half, most likely.



Using the two photos we have of the Talos II mainboard:

I managed to ID the following ports, please correct me if I missed something.


  • 5 pin header (I2C)
  • 3 pin header × 2 (had jumpers in both photos)
  • 4×2 pin (PWR1)
  • 4×2 pin (PWR2)
  • 12×2 pin ATX power (PWR3)

Back/Left (IO panel side)

  • DE-9 RS-232 (COM1)
  • 4 pin header (FAN6)
  • USB 3.0 × 2
  • 8P8C × 2
  • DE-15 VGA
  • PCIe 4.0 x8 (CPU1 slot 1)
  • PCIe 4.0 x16 (CPU1 slot 2)
  • PCIe 4.0 x16 (CPU2 slot 1)
  • PCIe 4.0 x16 (CPU2 slot 2)
  • PCIe 4.0 x8 (CPU2 slot 3)

Bottom (left to right)

  • 2 contact points
  • 3×1 pin header
  • 6×1 pin header
  • 3 small contact points
  • USB 3.0 × 2 (USB3/4) pin header
  • 3×1 pin header × 5
  • USB 2.0 (USB0)
  • 7×1 pin header (might be JTAG)
  • RS-232 external (COM2) pin header
  • 2 pin header × 2
  • 10×2 pin header, 19 pins (TPM)
  • 4×1 pin header
  • 6×1 pin header
  • 4×1 pin headers or contact points × 2 (photos vary)
  • SAS4 (white)
  • SAS5 (white)
  • SAS6, SAS7 (orange)

Front/Right (bottom to top)

  • SAS0-3 single connector
  • 8×2 contact points
  • 4×1 contact points or pin header (photos vary)
  • 4×2 contact points
  • 3 pin header × 2 (SATA DOM Power)
  • 4 pin header
  • 4 pin header
  • 4 pin header (FAN5)
  • 4 pin header
  • 4 pin header
  • 10×2 pin header
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Thats merely a matter of the kernel being specifically compiled for the platform and the drivers getting pushed with it. NBD.



There was a post showing the optional SAS controller, so that explains the heatsink in the bottom-right/front of the the board.


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More information - from the coreboot mailing list. I had not thought to check there, since Talos doesn’t use coreboot.


  • Ubuntu Server is planning POWER9 support
  • OpenPOWER does not have a chipset
  • SATA ports are only available through the optional (and proprietary) Microsemi PM8068 SAS controller
  • NVMe drive connected via PCIe slot
  • USB ports are run through a TI USB 3.0 controller
  • Serial is just for the BMC controller
  • NIC is a BCM5719 - needs blob firmware but is behind IOMMU

Ubuntu Server is officially supporting Power8 Do you have insight if they will support Power9?

Yes, they will.

What’s the name of the chipset your board will be using?

There is no chipset per se; as on most OpenPOWER systems the POWER PCIe lanes are brought directly out to the various on-board peripherals.

Also can we get a complete overview of all the I/O ports with Make and Model#. I see what looks like 4 SATA ports (in 2 different colors) on the board, but they are missing in the documentation

The ports in question are driven off of the Microsemi SAS controller, so they work for both SAS and SATA. USB is driven by a TI USB 3.0 controller; serial is passed through the BMC (standard OpenPOWER design).

I would also like to know what make & model the SATA controller is and the model of the Broadcom NIC chip for example.

BCM5719. There’s some good info about the internals of the chip online [1] that provides a starting point to write a replacement firmware if you’re interested. Otherwise, like all other peripherals, the NIC is behind the IOMMU and cannot access data in the CPU domain without kernel permission.

You might also want to add info to the site about the optional Microsemi SAS 3.0 RAID controller. Right now it’s unclear which one of their many ICs will be onboard (I assume it will be RAID-on-Chip:

I’ll bring this up internally. It’s the PM8068 controller (SmartIOC 2000).

Else keep up the good work and t hanks for making this happen.

No problem, thanks for the encouragement!


So the 4x SATA ports are optional and powered by PM8069, and they will only be present if you checkbox the “Integrated Microsemi SAS Controller (Proprietary)” on the purchase page, correct? Or in other words: if you don’t checkbox “Integrated Microsemi SAS Controller (Proprietary)” you will receive a board with no SATA ports?

Correct. Given the advantages of NVMe especially for a high-power development system like the Talos™ II this was considered an acceptable tradeoff.

[the BCM NIC] is the only device on the board that requires firmware, but it is behind the IOMMU and the FSF has indicated that we can still obtain RYF with this limitation.

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You are just on mark with this huh?



“on mark”? I’m not sure I understand, but I am certainly pining for it until I come up with the necessary funds.

Realistically, I’ll probably end up getting a Librem from Purism first, since those are less than half the price of a Talos box :frowning: but that just means I’ll be using the Librem to stare longingly at the Talos store page. Or at Sierra and Summit.



Unf, I forgot you like HPC stuff too.



“Days go by and still I think of you”

so, in this thread, 4 months later and still nothing but vapor.

You kids. Keep waiting. I’ve been waiting since the promise of PReP back in the 90’s.



I kinda forgot to be honest.



POWER9 is still under NDA, until that ends Raptor can’t even release benchmarks. We have pictures of the mainboard, so it obviously exists; Raptor looks like they are fulfilling their obligations for KGPE-D16 OpenBMC porting so I see no reason not to trust them to deliver it. All in all, this doesn’t look like vapourware to me.



8-core Sforza POWER9 chips for the Talos II are now for sale, still far below the core counts IBM is willing to sell in AC922 machines (16, 18, 20, or 22 cores).

Assuming that the AC922 uses either Monza or LaGrange chips, this would suggest a weird situation in which smaller Sforza chips (50 mm) are getting lower yields than larger chips (68.5 mm). Or are limited core count Sforza chips perfectly fine, but working cores are fused off to allow for segmentation?

Edit: AC922 uses Monza chips; it connects 2 or 3 GPUs via NVLink per socket, while LaGrange can only connect 1 GPU per socket using NVLink.



Here, can we just make a new thread for general POWER and PowerPC news? At least I want to. This is getting gimped along and I’ve been thinking about the mods lately. That and I don’t want to start another trigger war in the lounge.

Thoughts? I actually wanna delve into POWER9 and soon I’m starting an assembly project that I’m going to translate to PPC.

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Sure, I was just trying to keep it all in one thread since each little tidbit I came across wasn’t enough for a separate thread.

Also, Power assembly projects sound awesome.

So, if the Wikipedia terminology is correct, this would be a “Power Architecture” thread, as that would include both POWER and PowerPC.

Just make sure to leave a post here when you make it, so someone coming across this later on can easily navigate between the threads.

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This thread is generally dead, so the continuation is taking place in this thread here, as well as general POWER and PowerPC discussion.

Thank you for being interested.

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Mentioned about locking this, but I’ll just leave it open in case anything relevant comes up for this thread.



I made the other thread to both continue this one, and have other news as well (new freescale chips soon!!!). This one is just getting long in the tooth is all.

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In that case I’ll close this for now. :slight_smile:

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closed #86