Dell TB15/TB16 Thunderbolt Docks Should Soon Work Better On Linux
Written by Michael Larabel in Hardware on 17 July 2017 at 09:33 AM EDT. 7 Comments
HARDWARE --
There are many bug reports out there about issues with Dell's TB15 and TB16 Thunderbolt docks under Linux, but at least some of those remaining issues should be cleared up by a pending fix.

A Phoronix reader who has been affected by the Dell dock issues under Linux pointed out this patch addressing poor USB Ethernet performance when connected via a ASMEDIA ASM1042A xHCI host. From the patch, "bad performance was manifesting in Web browser use (like download large file such as ISO image). It is known limitation of ASM1042A that is not compatible with driver scheduling, As a workaround we can modify flow control handling of ASM1042A. The register we modify is changes the behavior."

That 68 lines of new code to avoid packet corruption should yield a much better Ethernet experience with the Dell TB15/TB16 docks and potentially other devices too.

As of writing that patch isn't yet in mainline Linux Git for v4.13 but the patch is being copied to stable so will hopefully make it to the stable Linux point releases in short order.
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Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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