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Arch Linux Revolts Against ATI Catalyst Driver

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  • #16
    Originally posted by Zhick View Post
    Michael admitting a mistake/making a correction. Yeah sure, that's gonna happen
    It's probably worth reading the mailing list referenced by the article before picking on the writing. JGC's post was very clear and level-headed but it came *after* the article (and the article reads pretty much like the mailing list entry).

    I personally try to avoid symlinks (probably because I keep getting in trouble with them ) but right now I think the driver requires them for certain distro configurations. Much as I sympathize, I hope the Arch folks would not stop packaging fglrx just because of the requirement for symlinking.

    That said, if they're moving to server 1.6 and we don't support 1.6 yet then packaging the driver for upcoming Arch versions doesn't make a lot of sense. Not sure if it's still worth packaging for users running older versions or if most Arch users run the latest bits anyways (ie there would be too few people running pre-1.6 to be worth the effort).

    The only thing I didn't really understand was that the first part of each post basically said "we've stopped packaging because of technical issues" while the second half of each post said "we hope someone else will take over the packaging". I think that translates into "it's a pain in the butt so someone else should take it over", which is fair.
    Last edited by bridgman; 03-01-2009, 01:55 PM.

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    • #17
      Originally posted by SyXbiT View Post
      All I know is nvidia delivered. No, they didn't promise, they just delivered.
      You must be kidding. Just look here:

      http://www.nvnews.net/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=115916

      You sound funny now.


      I'm really happy to hear that Arch Linux devs abandon support for catalyst. Should we blame them or AMD? I don't think so. AMD supports only few distros and Arch Linux devs wouldn't change their philosophy just, because binary blob doesn't work. If someone wants working fglrx just choose Kubuntu. I hope we'll get the new X server earlier than before now

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      • #18
        you cannot compare 2D performance issues to what ATI has done
        I'm thrilled with my nvidia card.
        ATI, after 2 years of compiz being around, still can't support it.
        Don't have VPDAU, and still have MAJOR tearing when playing videos (even in metacity)

        you're the one who's making ME laugh

        obviously all drivers have bugs. Bug you can't compare

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        • #19
          Originally posted by SyXbiT View Post
          you cannot compare 2D performance issues to what ATI has done
          I'm thrilled with my nvidia card.
          ATI, after 2 years of compiz being around, still can't support it.
          Don't have VPDAU, and still have MAJOR tearing when playing videos (even in metacity)

          you're the one who's making ME laugh

          obviously all drivers have bugs. Bug you can't compare
          I used nvidia cards for years and I can say their drivers sucks a lot. I'm a lot happier with Xorg Radeon driver. What makes you laugh exactly? I commented what makes me laugh in your post. What AMD promised? It looks YOU missed a point.
          Last edited by kraftman; 03-01-2009, 01:37 PM.

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          • #20
            Simplistic notion of Phoronix editor?

            Originally posted by Zhick View Post
            Michael admitting a mistake/making a correction. Yeah sure, that's gonna happen.
            This is not about admitting any sort of "mistake," but using Phoronix as a platform to talk back to the big silent wall that is AMD... which, I believe, is what Michael is trying to do.

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            • #21
              Originally posted by kraftman View Post
              I used nvidia cards for years and I can say their drivers sucks a lot. I'm a lot happier with Xorg Radeon driver. What makes you laugh exactly? I commented what makes me laugh in your post. What AMD promised? It looks YOU missed a point.
              I agree with you. The OSS ATI drivers are pretty good, and if they do all you need, they're the best bet.
              I, however, wanted Compiz, and openGL etc..
              This requires me to use a binary blob.

              I wasn't comparing radeonHD to nvidia, I was comparing catalyst to nvidia, and I believe nvidia has less problems

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              • #22
                Originally posted by SyXbiT View Post
                I agree with you. The OSS ATI drivers are pretty good, and if they do all you need, they're the best bet.
                I, however, wanted Compiz, and openGL etc..
                This requires me to use a binary blob.

                I wasn't comparing radeonHD to nvidia, I was comparing catalyst to nvidia, and I believe nvidia has less problems
                Yes, I agree. I just wanted to point that nvidia sometimes promises too and does nothing. If I say fglrx is better than nvidia binary blob it will be really funny Sorry for being rude before.

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                • #23
                  I find it very strange that radeonhd is being recommended, not radeon. Surely the Arch maintainers haven't forgotten that radeon supports *all* Radeons and not just the new ones, and that it's also the one that's actually build-tested?

                  As to the query near the beginning of the topic regarding GLSL, the state of it is that GLSL will probably show up in classic Mesa when somebody actually cares enough to write it, and in Gallium when I start supporting programmable shaders.

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                  • #24
                    The problem is, even when you begin to ignore fglrx, then users will still demand it because of better 3d performane (or they have to tell em to buy a game console instead). So they have to use the ati installer directly, if thats better or not depends on point of view.

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                    • #25
                      Originally posted by Zhick View Post
                      HAHAHA Michael admitting a mistake/making a correction. Yeah sure, that's gonna happen.HAHAHA
                      Actually, an addendum was made to that news post to reflect the mentioned forum post.

                      I have no problems fixing mistakes when they are discovered.

                      Originally posted by Zhick View Post
                      It's sad but Phoronix realy is the THG of Linux-News-sites. I'm not saying everything Phoronix does is bad, for example their coverage of the foss-(ati)-drivers is very good, but there also are lots of very inaccurate etc articles.
                      When you find an error or something that is inaccurate within an article, feel free to let me know and usually I'll work to resolve the situation. It's more about a lack of manpower than anything else. When problems are discovered, I do my best to resolve them. Pardon if not all articles and news posts are absolutely perfect. On top of writing 300+ articles and 700+ news posts per year by myself basically, and everything else related to Phoronix (not to even count all of the Phoronix Test Suite development time), I also have a full-time position at another company... As a result, sometimes I am just exhausted when writing.
                      Michael Larabel
                      http://www.michaellarabel.com/

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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by SyXbiT View Post
                        Then, phoronix started talking about catalyst h264 hardware acceleration, and how it was great (and about to be released). But guess what, yet again, it never happened. Who knows if it ever will.
                        You're not the only one frustrated over the AMD XvBA situation. The fact of the matter is that it was delayed internally by AMD from its Q4'08 target.
                        Michael Larabel
                        http://www.michaellarabel.com/

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                        • #27
                          Originally posted by SyXbiT View Post
                          you cannot compare 2D performance issues to what ATI has done
                          I'm thrilled with my nvidia card.
                          ATI, after 2 years of compiz being around, still can't support it.
                          Don't have VPDAU, and still have MAJOR tearing when playing videos (even in metacity)

                          you're the one who's making ME laugh

                          obviously all drivers have bugs. Bug you can't compare
                          Hm... I must be special I guess.
                          1) I play games full screen with OpenGL and other stuff... works
                          2) I play videos ( fullscreen too )... works
                          3) I develop using GLSL a game... works
                          4) I blend with blender fullscreen ( pure OpenGL app )... works

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                          • #28
                            First of all, let's state that I'm a bit disappointed that a discussion on an open development list hits Phoronix as a news article without asking anyone from the distribution about comments.

                            Second, when this discussion started, Andy was already pissed off for some months with the way packagers are supported and how the driver works. He has been telling me "I'm giving AMD two more months and then I won't maintain this driver anymore if things don't improve" a while ago. Two months have passed and Andy decided to post on the public development mailinglist that he doesn't like to maintain the AMD Catalyst driver anymore and that we should look for community people to invest their time in this driver.
                            Note that the situation is not just AMD-specific. Nvidia also has this problem more or less, but they have the advantage that 50% of our developers have an Nvidia card and their drivers are in a better state and are not limited to X.Org architecture.
                            Remember that none of us gets paid to do Archlinux development. We're all spending spare time in this distribution. We maintain this distribution because we like to do so. When we lose interest in a package and don't want to maintain it anymore, it's better to drop the package to a group of people who are forced to use it, or who do want to maintain it.

                            As for xorg-server-1.6: This is a side-effect of the problems we face when packaging AMD's catalyst for our distribution. When our catalyst maintainer posts something on the AMD secret beta list, all he gets is silence. There's no information about what's coming up, when what will be supported and when what improvements will be made to the driver.
                            As it looks now, we're dropping the driver completely now because of compatibility issues with server-1.6, but won't add it back to the main distribution when it receives server-1.6 support. The community can pick up this task if they really want this driver, as there's no maintainer willing to maintain this driver anymore.

                            As for the radeonhd driver mentioned on the mailinglist as alternative: these people don't maintain the drivers related to X.Org and don't know which driver belongs to which chip exactly. For some newer chips the radeonhd driver works, but for most others the ati driver is the driver they need. Making fun out of someone on a public news site because he inofficially states that the radeonhd driver is an alternative is not a nice thing to do.

                            Then again, arch-dev-public is a development discussion list, which is public readable. It's not an announcement mailinglist. Articles like these really make me think whether I want to post something to arch-dev-public or just the private arch-dev list.

                            For your information, my draft for the xorg-server-1.6 announcement went to the private list and won't show up on the public list until all work on xorg-server-1.6 and its drivers are done.

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                            • #29
                              http://www.archlinux.org/pipermail/a...ry/010398.html
                              My reason for it to go to community is so a TU can dedicate attention to it, Andreas does not want to waste time on fixing this drivers as they are of no particular interest to him. Maybe a TU in community can apply patches to make the x86_64 9.2 release to work. But well, I'm fine with moving them to AUR, there are some distributions that do not provide catalyst at all in any form, comes to mind paldo GNU/Linux.
                              i think this sums up what i wanted to write anyway.

                              i haven't been using fglrx somewhere since 8.35. i tried it few times after it improved opengl performance, but i didn't like it.

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                              • #30
                                Originally posted by JGC_ View Post
                                First of all, let's state that I'm a bit disappointed that a discussion on an open development list hits Phoronix as a news article without asking anyone from the distribution about comments.
                                Well, I don't see a problem posting it as a news item on Phoronix. Your statement is a bit contradictive, first you talk about 'a discussion on an open development list', and then you say a maintainer decided to drop the package. Either you say it's not decided yet and still being discussed, and then this news item is indeed a bit overhasty, or you stand behind the (justified) decision of the maintainer. But I don't see how you can hold both points.

                                Also, this is quite relevant information for some Arch Linux users and I'm not sure everyone of them reads that list, so that news item is certainly in order.

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