[GIT PULL] ARM64: juno: SCPI and dependent drivers for v4.3

Sudeep Holla sudeep.holla at arm.com
Thu Aug 13 07:53:04 PDT 2015

On 13/08/15 15:24, Catalin Marinas wrote:
> On Thu, Aug 13, 2015 at 02:40:26PM +0200, Olof Johansson wrote:
>> On Wed, Aug 05, 2015 at 11:22:51AM +0100, Sudeep Holla wrote:
>>> Here is the first pull request for SCPI, clock and cpufreq support on
>>> ARM64 Juno development platform for v4.3
>> I'd like to hear from Catalin and Will on why ARM is doing this. Catalin
>> and Will are pushing back very hard at vendors who don't use PSCI for
>> CPU power management, and then they have coworkers that are looking to
>> merge this directly into the kernel.
> Actually, the arm64 CPU power management story is pretty much handled by
> Lorenzo and Sudeep in my team, so I trust their judgement ;). But I
> agree with you that a better explanation on the reasons behind this is
> needed, otherwise we risk confusing messages. I'll try to summarise it
> below but Sudeep can reply with more details.

(I will use the acronomys directly as Catalin has already explained the

Thanks Catalin for the detailed explanation. I agree that this pull
request has not much details, but the patch series makes reference only
to the clocks and features provided by the SCP(System Control Processor)
to be used by Linux(non-secure) and nothing about CPU power states that
are handled by PSCI. This SCPI is completely independent and orthogonal
to PSCI.

> PSCI only covers CPU boot/cpuidle and platform suspend. It does not have
> any provisions for DVFS and I'm not sure this could be easily
> standardised (or whether we could find enough supporters to get it
> adopted).

Though we are not campaigning it as aggressively as PSCI.

> SCPI is a (standard) interface to a coprocessor handling clocks etc. to
> be used with cpufreq. This patchset adds support for cpufreq/dvs which
> is not handled by PSCI. So, just to clarify the acronyms:
> SCPI - System Control and Power Interface - it's a protocol for
> communicating with a System Control Processor (e.g. Cortex-M3) via
> mailboxes. It is used in Linux for DVFS but this is *not* a secure/EL3
> firmware interface (a.k.a. SMC calls). It indeed a firmware interface
> but the firmware runs on a separate coprocessor and not on the CPU itself.
> PSCI - Power State Coordination Interface - it is a secure firmware
> interface for coordinating the CPU power states (idle, not DVFS). The
> firmware may use an SCPI communication channel (e.g. deeper sleep states
> where clock changes are needed).

I will add some more information to (hopefully) clarify the doubts.

SCP(System Control Processor) offers control and management of the
core/cluster power states, various power domain DVFS including the
core/cluster, certain system clocks configuration, thermal sensors and
many others.

Though the core/cluster power states are also handled this SCP,
they are accessible only through secure channels and PSCI firmware
implementations on the platform rely on that internally. Non-secure
access/requests are not possible.

Just to summarize, this SCP helps to offload all the power management
work to a dedicated low power processor which can be always running.
On Juno, its Cortex-M while on AMD Seattle it's Cortex-A5.


More information about the linux-arm-kernel mailing list