NZXT Kraken Driver Queued For Introduction In Linux 5.13
Written by Michael Larabel in Hardware on 26 March 2021 at 03:53 PM EDT. 3 Comments
HARDWARE --
Last week we noted how a kernel driver for NZXT's Kraken AIO liquid cooling devices was under review for the mainline kernel. Shortly after that point the driver did get successfully picked up for hwmon-next and thus should be appearing in the upcoming Linux 5.13 cycle.

For those with an KZXT Kraken X42 / X52 / X62 / X72 all-in-one liquid cooling setup, Linux 5.13 should be mainlining this community-maintained driver. This driver was developed via reverse-engineering the NZXT Kraken USB protocol. This has been years in the making with the NZXT Kraken support for Linux with this "nzxt-kraken2" kernel driver previously maintained out-of-tree as part of the Liquidctl project.


Jonas Malaco of the Liquidctl project managed to get it reviewed and queued into the hardware monitoring subsystem's hwmon-next area ahead of the Linux 5.12 kernel.

This kernel driver allows for monitoring the Kraken's fan and pump speed as well as coolant temperature, exposed via sysfs to user-space. The fan and pump control is not exposed by this kernel driver but needs to be handled by the existing user-space software on Linux with the same going for LED controls too. Those user-space programs like GKraken can still interact directly with the USB-based coolers using the hidraw interface for allowing such controls. More details in the prior article.

The nzxt-kraken2 driver is about 250 lines of code and can be seen via this commit in hwmon-next.
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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 20,000 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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