The Fedora Project released Version 7 of its Linux distribution shortly after tickless support entered the kernel, so Fedora users have been among the first exposed to PowerTOP.
Fedora kernel maintainer Dave Jones explained PowerTOP's attraction to tweak-crazy Linux users in an email interview. "It hasn't been without its problems, but it's definitely attractive to have a power-conscious user base, and PowerTOP has brought a whole bunch of people around to thinking, 'Hey, my computer is busy doing nothing'," Jones says. "One of the key plus points of PowerTOP was that it's a tool that anyone can run and understand, and give valuable feedback to developers.
So we end up seeing profile data from a whole bunch of use-cases that otherwise we wouldn't have thought to even profile."
Jones plans to integrate the HPET patch to help the users who can't get full benefit from tickless because their BIOSs turn HPET off. Fedora, like other community distributions, makes recent kernel code available through its software update system, to encourage users to test.
An earlier version of the HPET patch caused some systems running Fedora's preliminary testing "rawhide" releases not to boot, Jones says, and he removed it temporarily. But, he says, "force-enabling the HPET is a 'must have' ... as there are more than enough BIOSs out there that don't enable it, forgoing a very useful hardware feature."