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Creative Labs Continues To Shaft Linux

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  • Creative Labs Continues To Shaft Linux

    Phoronix: Creative Labs Continues To Shaft Linux

    It has been a while since last mentioning the Creative X-Fi sound cards at Phoronix, but it's not because the Linux support is all nice and working now that Creative open-sourced their X-Fi driver, but rather things have stalled. The X-Fi sound cards still are a sore spot on Linux and there isn't "out of the box" support in major Linux distributions. First, however, it's important to note how the situation evolved into Creative open-sourcing their binary Sound Blaster X-Fi driver.....

    http://www.phoronix.com/vr.php?view=NzE2Ng

  • #2
    When I bought my new system earlier this year, I didn't know whether to stick with the Realtek ALC888 on my motherboard or buy a Creative X-Fi Titanium (I had a Creative Audigy 2 ZS before and loved it). Well, I chose to stick with the onboard chip and it really was the right decision! Realtek has great driver support!

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    • #3
      From his eMail...
      [...] Try to shout loudly on any (Creative) forums so that they could hear
      user's voice... I'm still waiting for any contacts from them.


      thanks,

      Takashi
      Don't even try to use a bugmenot account there, you will be banned. :/

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      • #4
        Creative will change their ways when they are entirely and completely alone with their poorly supported hardware. This day is coming soon.

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        • #5
          Isn't the code they have released so far enough to make a working driver? If so, why haven't we seen an ALSA driver yet?

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          • #6
            Isn't one of the core strengths of open source software supposed to be that unmaintained or legacy code can be given a new lease of life because anyone is free to come along and pick it up?

            Sure, Creative aren't actively helping this get fixed, but hasn't releasing the source code that they had enabled the open source community to fix their crap?

            Or is fixing their code impossible without further documentation?

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            • #7
              One of the main developers from 4front/OSS4 (Hannu Savolainen) said this in his blog:

              SB X-Fi is one of the last new consumer sound cards in the market. It has impressive feature list on paper. Unfortunately the EMU 20k chip is extremely complex. It has dozens of different processing units connected by a freely reconfigurable ring bus. In addition it has a DSP unit that is completely undocumented. Also different X-Fi cards have different peripheral chips connected to the 20k chip. Figuring all that out seems to be something that may take few years of full time work. In addition keeping track of the changes in recent/future card models makes the driver a moving target. The current X-Fi driver of OSS is based on a simple DOS based manufacturing test program provided by Creative. It supports only older card models and limited functionality. Unfortunately this seems to be the best that can be done unless we manage to hire a group of 5-10 sr driver engineers to do the job.
              http://4front-tech.com/hannublog/
              Last edited by DanL; 03-24-2009, 01:18 PM.

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              • #8
                If Creative wants to shaft Linux, then shaft them right back!

                Give people a great, high quality driver... that only supports a single 48kHz output stream. Make their cards look like a joke compared to cards from 1999, because it reflects the rest of that company well.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Ant P. View Post
                  If Creative wants to shaft Linux, then shaft them right back! Give people a great, high quality driver... that only supports a single 48kHz output stream. Make their cards look like a joke compared to cards from 1999, because it reflects the rest of that company well.
                  Yeah, because in most people's minds the only thing that'll mean is that Linux is crap. Great plan. Things that work under Linux is great. Things that don't work is acceptable. Things that sorta work but are crap is what drives people away.

                  Like not so long ago with wireless card, pretty much the worst you could do to a newbie is "yeah you can get it working with ndiswrapper and a windows driver binary by custom compilling the source..." Seriously, "No it won't ever work well, buy a brand that works" would be better.

                  X-Fi = No sound = Loud and clear message = Don't buy for Linux. From what I've understood, most use integrated sound, those that want pro sound don't buy Creative and their primary market is stupid gamers anyway. And those will be running Windows, so why bother?

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                  • #10
                    Basially you can create a dkms package for the OSS driver and it will work with every new kernel (as long as it compiles). ALSA support would be better however, but before you hear nothing...

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