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  • #61
    I think the problem with the Catalyst drivers is actually the policy of only supporting enterprise Linux distros, which is utterly ludicrous because as a percentage of Linux desktops, enterprise distros probably cover less than 1%!

    The people who really *need* 3D drivers are those running home Linux desktops - why on earth can't ATI support them in a timely fashion? If they did, then the enterprise distros would automatically get support too (since they always lag behind w.r.t. versions).

    Hence, anything non-enterprise (OpenSUSE, Fedora, Ubuntu non-LTS) Linux will inevitably use a later kernel and X server than enterprise distros and Catalyst inevitably becomes immediately unusable upon release of the latest non-enterprise distro version.

    The biggest Catalyst disaster of the last few years was the release of Fedora 9 - I can guarantee you that there were more users of F9 within a month of its release than *all* the enterprise Linux distros in the world combined.

    And did ATI care? Nope, they sat on their fat arses for month after month, not supporting the kernel/X server combo that F9 shipped with. It took 4.5 months (yes, months) before a Catalyst driver finally came out that worked - so long that I stuck with F8 and jumped to F10 a few months after that.

    Now we're in the same vicious cycle with Fedora 11 - one of the best Linux desktop distro users out there (particularly for programmers) and completely unsupported for multiple months *again* by ATI. This time, it looks like a kernel 2.6.29 issue (F9 mostly had the X server to blame) and it isn't the only non-enterprise distro suffering this problem.

    And what do we read in the release notes for Catalyst 9.7? Not support for a later X server release, not support for a newer kernel (leaving Catalyst now 3 versions behind, which is an absolute disgrace), but the addition of support for an obscure enterprise Linux distro (Red Flag DT 7.0 - barely used in Western countries where I suspect the bulk of ATI's Linux market is) that's probably running a crusty old X server/kernel combo and not used by many desktop users anyway (can you see a lot of Chinese people paying top Yen for an obscure enterprise Linux distro on their desktop? Nope, I can't either).

    Basically, ATI have badly let down Linux desktop users in the last couple of years and this latest 9.7 release shows no sign of fixing that either. At this rate, I'm wondering if Fedora 12 will be out before ATI supports Fedora 11, it's getting that ridiculous!

    Before you mention the "radeon" and "radeonhd" drivers, I've tried them both and they simply don't work well - monitor alignments are wrong, refresh rates aren't set right and the 3D acceleration is either poor or non-existent. The Catalyst driver, when they eventually update it for the X server/kernel I run, is the only one that does its job properly, albeit sadly many months late.

    Get your arses into gear, ATI! You may have a monthly release schedule, but it's virtually worthless if your latest release doesn't work on the latest versions of world's most popular Linux destkop distros (Ubuntu, Fedora and OpenSUSE).

    Comment


    • #62
      LOL!!!!!!!!

      Open Source driver works with .31 on my karmic alpha. And look at fglrx LOL!!

      3D is better at fglrx? install it on my mashine with x1400 and .31 and we will se what driver has better 3d performance. LOL

      Comment


      • #63
        Ahh, I was wondering where the trolls were lurking....

        Comment


        • #64
          Originally posted by Kamikaze321 View Post
          LOL!!!!!!!!

          Open Source driver works with .31 on my karmic alpha. And look at fglrx LOL!!

          3D is better at fglrx? install it on my mashine with x1400 and .31 and we will se what driver has better 3d performance. LOL
          thats with an x1400.... alot of people have newer cards than that which have less full featured OSS drivers....

          Comment


          • #65
            For anybody with 9.7, who sincerely believes that this driver release is progress please run

            Code:
            X :3 -ac -terminate &
            and then kill the server and then enjoy the frozen machine


            Please tell me if it actually works for someone without a reboot, so I can give it another go assuming my setup was wrong.

            I pretty much rely on multiple x screens for every game I launch so that they aren't affected by the compositing manager, and apps setting my desktop to non-preferred resolution after quiting. I also use them for running virtualbox - very handy for switching between tasks.

            Comment


            • #66
              Originally posted by rklrkl View Post
              I think the problem with the Catalyst drivers is actually the policy of only supporting enterprise Linux distros, which is utterly ludicrous because as a percentage of Linux desktops, enterprise distros probably cover less than 1%!
              When did Ubuntu become only an enterprise distro ? Based on feedback from OEMs and end users RHEL, SuSE and Ubuntu together cover at least 60% of our market, much more if you factor in the higher Linux marketshare in the workstation segment. For SuSE, our test focus is actually on OpenSUSE (the consumer distro) not SLES/SLED (the enterprise distros).

              Originally posted by rklrkl View Post
              The people who really *need* 3D drivers are those running home Linux desktops - why on earth can't ATI support them in a timely fashion?
              Can I suggest that the primary people who *need* 3D drivers are those running commercial workstation (eg CAD) applications ? They run enterprise distros almost exclusively, and represent a significant part of the Linux graphics business. I agree that home desktop users who class themselves as "gamers" (perhaps 30% of that market) are the next in line.

              Originally posted by rklrkl View Post
              If they did, then the enterprise distros would automatically get support too (since they always lag behind w.r.t. versions). Hence, anything non-enterprise (OpenSUSE, Fedora, Ubuntu non-LTS) Linux will inevitably use a later kernel and X server than enterprise distros and Catalyst inevitably becomes immediately unusable upon release of the latest non-enterprise distro version.
              For Ubuntu and SuSE we focus testing on the consumer releases (non-LTS Ubuntu and OpenSUSE) since the consumer and enterprise versions are close enough that testing the consumer version is usually sufficient to ensure the driver will work on the enterprise version. In the case of RHEL/Fedora, the two distros are much further apart, to the point that testing on Fedora is not sufficient to ensure operation on RHEL.

              Originally posted by rklrkl View Post
              The biggest Catalyst disaster of the last few years was the release of Fedora 9 - I can guarantee you that there were more users of F9 within a month of its release than *all* the enterprise Linux distros in the world combined.

              And did ATI care? Nope, they sat on their fat arses for month after month, not supporting the kernel/X server combo that F9 shipped with. It took 4.5 months (yes, months) before a Catalyst driver finally came out that worked - so long that I stuck with F8 and jumped to F10 a few months after that.
              OK, help me here. We don't claim to support Fedora, and we recommend the open source drivers for Fedora (which RH agrees with). How can we have a "Catalyst disaster" with Fedora ?

              Originally posted by rklrkl View Post
              Now we're in the same vicious cycle with Fedora 11 - one of the best Linux desktop distro users out there (particularly for programmers) and completely unsupported for multiple months *again* by ATI. This time, it looks like a kernel 2.6.29 issue (F9 mostly had the X server to blame) and it isn't the only non-enterprise distro suffering this problem.

              And what do we read in the release notes for Catalyst 9.7? Not support for a later X server release, not support for a newer kernel (leaving Catalyst now 3 versions behind, which is an absolute disgrace), but the addition of support for an obscure enterprise Linux distro (Red Flag DT 7.0 - barely used in Western countries where I suspect the bulk of ATI's Linux market is) that's probably running a crusty old X server/kernel combo and not used by many desktop users anyway (can you see a lot of Chinese people paying top Yen for an obscure enterprise Linux distro on their desktop? Nope, I can't either).
              China is actually a huge market for Linux, particularly for OEM preloads.

              Originally posted by rklrkl View Post
              Basically, ATI have badly let down Linux desktop users in the last couple of years and this latest 9.7 release shows no sign of fixing that either. At this rate, I'm wondering if Fedora 12 will be out before ATI supports Fedora 11, it's getting that ridiculous!

              Before you mention the "radeon" and "radeonhd" drivers, I've tried them both and they simply don't work well - monitor alignments are wrong, refresh rates aren't set right and the 3D acceleration is either poor or non-existent. The Catalyst driver, when they eventually update it for the X server/kernel I run, is the only one that does its job properly, albeit sadly many months late.
              Have you filed bugs for the display issues ? I don't think I remember hearing those.

              Originally posted by rklrkl View Post
              Get your arses into gear, ATI! You may have a monthly release schedule, but it's virtually worthless if your latest release doesn't work on the latest versions of world's most popular Linux destkop distros (Ubuntu, Fedora and OpenSUSE).
              I believe the latest releases of Ubuntu and OpenSuSE are both supported.
              Last edited by bridgman; 07-24-2009, 05:55 PM.

              Comment


              • #67
                Improvements on HD3200

                Some improvements with my HD3200 running Ubuntu 9.04 : more frames in glxgears, even with compiz on... video decoding still works, we'll see if the occasional image freeze still happens.

                Comment


                • #68
                  before you get pissed because AMD is concentrating on CAD users:
                  just compare the prize of a FireGL card with a normal desktop product.

                  It is basically the same hardware. You are paying the premium for the drivers and support.

                  If you are willing to shell out the money for a firegl card (and you buy, say 100 or 1000 of them) I am sure AMD will be a lot quicker helping you out.

                  At the moment supporting 'us' is a nice bonus. A fallout of the firegl support. And it is not that bad. Sure, dmesg is still spammed, but 9.6 has some nice bugfixes. Supporting the open source driver development with documentation AND manpower is something AMD should be lauded for.

                  So, please, calm down a bit, ok? AMD is not as big as Intel and unlike nvidia plays nicely.

                  Comment


                  • #69
                    Originally posted by bridgman View Post
                    OK, help me here. We don't claim to support Fedora, and we recommend the open source drivers for Fedora (which RH agrees with). How can we have a "Catalyst disaster" with Fedora ?
                    I don't like that "we don't claim to support" statement, why aren't you even trying to make it work?

                    The point is that you _should_ support fedora, a very common distribution that has a lot of users. Hiding behind some statement that fedora is too far apart from rhel is not a good reason for me, I want support for fedora itself, not rhel.

                    That you decide on a few distributions and support them is perhaps enough for you, enough for any big corpration, but not for an end user like me and many others.

                    Remember that you are competing against nVidia, so people will always want you to have more or less equal support.

                    I just had to change distribution from ArchLinux to Ubuntu because you don't support any new kernels not in these selected distributions.
                    I am fine with this, which is why I've never complained, but alot of people are not, and with right.

                    And also, please don't say that you support through your oss driver until it actually is good. Full 3D with very good performance (think I read an estimate of ~80% of fglrx in some thread), and more or less feature parity.
                    Last edited by McDuck; 07-24-2009, 07:21 PM.

                    Comment


                    • #70
                      Originally posted by bridgman View Post
                      OK, help me here. We don't claim to support Fedora, and we recommend the open source drivers for Fedora (which RH agrees with). How can we have a "Catalyst disaster" with Fedora ?
                      Because you're ignoring a distribution with many ati users? Fedora / RH will always push the opensource (and patent unencumbered) solution -- but it doesn't mean that magically it suits all users (that's why there's RPM fusion etc.). To put it in perspective, there are an estimate ~16 million fedora machines (albeit the vast majority are too smart to have an ATI card). The amount of bad will this is generating is astounding, all for something you're going to add in a couple month anyway. (and is seriously not that big of a deal to add)

                      Considering the quality of all the previous fglrx releases, I don't see why fglrx is reduced to bare-maintenance releases and all effort put into a solution that doesn't suck (radeon drivers) including adding all the CAD stuff that you say opensource will never support ;D.

                      Comment


                      • #71
                        I just want support for my $200 video card

                        Posted by bridgman
                        The fglrx driver is primarily written for the professional workstation market (CAD etc..), which is the main market for Linux graphics right now. It is unlikely that the open source drivers will ever be able to replace fglrx in that segment.
                        I'm so tired of hearing this. Does that change the fact that I paid $200 for a video card that is not fully supported by the company that made it? You don't hear this kind of lame statement from your competition. I have products from AMD and Nvidia in my home and I can testify to the support of both companies. AMD and Nvidia are on even ground when it comes to Windows in my opinion even though there are still tons of people who claim otherwise. But when it comes to Linux Nvidia mops the floor with AMD. I don't hear Nvidia claiming that they only support their workstation clients. There Linux driver isn't called quadro. So what you are telling me is that I should just use Windows. Oh, there's the open source drivers you say. Have you tried them lately? Apparently not because if you had you would know that they are still not that usable for my hardware. Unless the latest version is being used with the 2.6.30 kernel the Radeon 3850 doesn't have any 3D acceleration. That's not happening until Ubuntu 9.10 is released.

                        Posted by bridgman
                        Jaunty also shipped with the open source drivers by default. If they do everything you want then I think everyone would agree that staying with the default drivers is your best bet.
                        Obviously they don't do what I want, otherwise I wouldn't be trying to use fglrx. The version of the radeon driver that ships with Jaunty only provides 2D acceleration for my card. Why shouldn't I have be able to access my $200 video cards 3D capabilities? I constantly can't do compositing or play simple games because fglrx is too damn flaky. I've seen you mention using XRender before for doing compositing because compositing doesn't require full OpenGL acceleration. Have you ever tried using XRender? It's slow as molasses and doesn't always work right.

                        Posted by bridgman
                        The purpose of the ati.cchtml.com tracker is to collect and organize enough information that a developer will be able to reproduce the problem in house. For the problem you are describing we would need more information than just "3850" and "Kubuntu", of course, eg which applications we should be running to make the problem appear.
                        Yes, it does seem to be a memory leak. As far as what applications I use, it doesn't matter. It happens with different programs all the time. Firefox, Konsole, VirtualBox, Amarok, whatever. I'll give you information like my motherboard model, CPU, Ram, whatever all day long if I know someone is actually going to do something with it. But like you said fglrx is for CAD workstations, average consumers don't matter to AMD. Unless you can tell me someone is actually going to investigate something I'm not going to waste my time putting together my specs for a company who doesn't care unless I'm using CAD.

                        I hate that you have to take the brunt of everyone's anger here in this forum and I commend you for keeping your cool as well as you do with some of the posts I've seen directed towards you. I wish you would drop the "we only support CAD users" defense though. I hope AMD pays you well for monitoring this forum.

                        Comment


                        • #72
                          Originally posted by Erikina View Post
                          Because you're ignoring a distribution with many ati users? Fedora / RH will always push the opensource (and patent unencumbered) solution -- but it doesn't mean that magically it suits all users (that's why there's RPM fusion etc.). To put it in perspective, there are an estimate ~16 million fedora machines (albeit the vast majority are too smart to have an ATI card).
                          With respect, if you add the installed base estimates from all the major OSes, then compare the total with the estimated number of PCs in the world, something seems seriously out of whack. Most estimates indicate that roughly 1% of the billion PCs in the world are running Linux, or 10 million total. You can find higher estimates but if you dig a bit you find the numbers are things like "PCs sold without an OS, and we assume the user will run Linux rather than pirating Windows".

                          I don't think anyone knows what the real numbers are, but please understand that there is a huge range of estimates out there and the numbers you are citing sit out near the edge of the range. Also note that Fedora is probably the most "different" from upstream kernel & X server of any distro out there, so the idea that supporting Fedora would magically bring support for other distros is a bit of a myth. I do think you will see faster support for other distros over time, but we do want to make sure that we have a solid solution in place for the current range of distros first.

                          Originally posted by Erikina View Post
                          The amount of bad will this is generating is astounding, all for something you're going to add in a couple month anyway. (and is seriously not that big of a deal to add)
                          Two years ago everyone told us that writing drivers was easy and that if only we would open up the hardware specs then the community would write better drivers in no time. A year later that shifted to loud complaints that *we* weren't spending enough money writing the open source drivers ourselves, and what I'm hearing today is "we demand proprietary drivers, writing open source drivers is too hard and the open source drivers don't do enough". Despite all that, you are still telling us that adding features and support to the proprietary drivers is "easy" and that we're obviously stupid for not doing it.

                          The choice is pretty simple -- we can spread our efforts out and attemt to support all distros equally but make slower progress overall, or focus on a representative subset of distros and make progress more quickly, *then* focus on improving / speeding up support for the rest. The first approach means our overall quality of Linux support will be lower but we won't piss anyone off; the second approach means we can offer a good Linux user experience more quickly but will some distro users will feel insulted by our choices.

                          Originally posted by Erikina View Post
                          Considering the quality of all the previous fglrx releases, I don't see why fglrx is reduced to bare-maintenance releases and all effort put into a solution that doesn't suck (radeon drivers) including adding all the CAD stuff that you say opensource will never support ;D.
                          Simple. The workstation market is very fast moving and competitive, but it also represents the largest share of the Linux graphics market, so stopping is not an option. The whole point of fglrx is to give Linux users access to the proprietary code we share across all OSes, which we can't put in the open source drivers for a number of reasons.
                          Last edited by bridgman; 07-25-2009, 12:22 AM.

                          Comment


                          • #73
                            Originally posted by skywarp04 View Post
                            I'm so tired of hearing this. Does that change the fact that I paid $200 for a video card that is not fully supported by the company that made it?
                            You're taking my words out of context. I was responding to your comment that "Fglrx is a mess. It needs to be thrown to the bottom a scrap heap as a failure." - I said that we need fglrx for the workstation market, but you're responding as if I said "we don't care about you, only about the workstation market".

                            Originally posted by skywarp04 View Post
                            You don't hear this kind of lame statement from your competition.
                            Tell them that they should scrap their driver and see what they say

                            Originally posted by skywarp04 View Post
                            I have products from AMD and Nvidia in my home and I can testify to the support of both companies. AMD and Nvidia are on even ground when it comes to Windows in my opinion even though there are still tons of people who claim otherwise. But when it comes to Linux Nvidia mops the floor with AMD.
                            Yep, and what we've been doing is bringing that same core code to Linux users and then knocking off the Linux-specific issues that result. I know you would like all the work to be finished in a month, but it doesn't work that way.

                            Originally posted by skywarp04 View Post
                            I don't hear Nvidia claiming that they only support their workstation clients.
                            You don't hear us claiming it either

                            Originally posted by skywarp04 View Post
                            There Linux driver isn't called quadro. So what you are telling me is that I should just use Windows. Oh, there's the open source drivers you say. Have you tried them lately? Apparently not because if you had you would know that they are still not that usable for my hardware. Unless the latest version is being used with the 2.6.30 kernel the Radeon 3850 doesn't have any 3D acceleration. That's not happening until Ubuntu 9.10 is released.
                            I actually use the open source drivers all the time on rv570, rv620 and rv770 so I think I have a pretty good idea what they do

                            2.6.30 is for 2D acceleration, but that code was backported into the Ubuntu kernel for 9.04. Kernel support for 3D will probably go into 2.6.32.

                            The main thing gating 3D driver availability is writing the %^$&%@! driver. We released programming info and sample code at the end of 2008 but it turned out that all of the community developers were still working on other important projects, so it's really just been our guys writing the 3D driver. It's making pretty good progress though; there's still a "mystery problem" with textures and some intermittent corruption that looks like something we don't understand about the new radeon-rewrite code, but other than that it seems to be coming together pretty well.

                            Originally posted by skywarp04 View Post
                            Obviously they don't do what I want, otherwise I wouldn't be trying to use fglrx. The version of the radeon driver that ships with Jaunty only provides 2D acceleration for my card. Why shouldn't I have be able to access my $200 video cards 3D capabilities? I constantly can't do compositing or play simple games because fglrx is too damn flaky. I've seen you mention using XRender before for doing compositing because compositing doesn't require full OpenGL acceleration. Have you ever tried using XRender? It's slow as molasses and doesn't always work right.
                            It worked pretty well for me, although I was mostly using Metacity. I can try it again on the weekend if you like.

                            Originally posted by skywarp04 View Post
                            Yes, it does seem to be a memory leak. As far as what applications I use, it doesn't matter. It happens with different programs all the time. Firefox, Konsole, VirtualBox, Amarok, whatever. I'll give you information like my motherboard model, CPU, Ram, whatever all day long if I know someone is actually going to do something with it. But like you said fglrx is for CAD workstations, average consumers don't matter to AMD.
                            No, that's what *you* said. What I said was that we could not "throw it to the bottom of the scrap heap" because we needed it for the workstation market.

                            Originally posted by skywarp04 View Post
                            Unless you can tell me someone is actually going to investigate something I'm not going to waste my time putting together my specs for a company who doesn't care unless I'm using CAD.
                            Again, the CAD thing is your statement not mine. I"m only suggesting that you fill out a bug ticket so our devs can reproduce the problem and have a chance of fixing it. The only promise I can make for sure is that if we *can't* reproduce it then it's only likely to get fixed by accident since nobody will be able to work on it.

                            Originally posted by skywarp04 View Post
                            I hate that you have to take the brunt of everyone's anger here in this forum and I commend you for keeping your cool as well as you do with some of the posts I've seen directed towards you. I wish you would drop the "we only support CAD users" defense though.
                            I'm not saying that. I am saying that workstation users represent the largest part of the market and that we need to allocate resources in a way that is at least approximately based on market size (be it current or future). Any company who says they don't do that is probably lying to you.

                            Originally posted by skywarp04 View Post
                            I hope AMD pays you well for monitoring this forum.
                            My "job" here is as the open source guy, but I try to help out with fglrx questions where I can. Everyone should have a hobby
                            Last edited by bridgman; 07-24-2009, 11:40 PM.

                            Comment


                            • #74
                              Originally posted by bridgman View Post
                              With respect, if you add the installed base estimates from all the major OSes, then compare the total with the estimated number of PCs in the world, something seems seriously out of whack.
                              Agreed, but Fedora figures are backed up by statistics and methdology (something I don't think any other distro has provided.) Also, keep in mind all those cheap One-Laptop-Per-Child (>1 mill) are running Fedora, as a fair few servers, and it's a favourite at universities.

                              Most estimates indicate that roughly 1% of the billion PCs in the world are running Linux, or 10 million total. You can find higher estimates but if you dig a bit you find the numbers are things like "PCs sold without an OS, and we assume the user will run Linux rather than pirating Windows".
                              The 1-2% estimates are generally derived from looking at statistics from web browser traffic. Something that will under-represent Linux as a whole .. although probably a decent metric for looking at desktop usage (as surfing the net net is a pretty desktop oriented activity).

                              Two years ago everyone told us that writing drivers was easy and that if only we would open up the hardware specs then the community would write better drivers in no time.
                              For what it's worth, opening the specs is the reason I have a ATI card now.

                              A year later that shifted to loud complaints that *we* weren't spending enough money writing the open source drivers ourselves, and what I'm hearing today is "we demand proprietary drivers, writing open source drivers is too hard and the open source drivers don't do enough".
                              What you're hearing is the complaints of people who want their hardware to work. I wouldn't exactly take it as a technical guide to writing drivers.

                              Despite all that, you are still telling us that adding features and support to the proprietary drivers is "easy" and that we're obviously stupid for not doing it.
                              Oh please. I've seen patches sitting in your bug tracker for months without getting applied. And I'm not even asking for a million new features, I just want it to work in a _4 month_ old kernel that you claim to support. The patch to get 9.6/9.7 to compile with later kernels is relatively minor (although, it looks like there are a couple other changes needed in your binary).

                              The website and release notes don't even mention the fact, that your driver will not work. The installer is all too happy to break the system. If this the best you can do, then maybe there is something wrong with the dev team..


                              The choice is pretty simple -- we can spread our efforts out and attemt to support all distros equally but make slower progress overall, or focus on a representative subset of distros and make progress more quickly, *then* focus on improving / speeding up support for the rest. The first approach means our overall quality of Linux support will be lower but we won't piss anyone off; the second approach means we can offer a good Linux user experience more quickly but will some distro users will feel insulted by our choices.
                              Again, I don't buy it. The way any decent team would do it, is make sure it works with the latest stable software (kernel, xorg). Then focus on the supported distros and features. Unsupported distros / build-it-yourself-stuff would just need to figure out how to package it themselves. That way, you're not increasing the amount of work (supporting later software is inevitable) while not completely shafting users.

                              Comment


                              • #75
                                Ok, maybe I took it a little out of context, but just to clarify these were your words.

                                Posted by bridgman
                                The fglrx driver is primarily written for the professional workstation market (CAD etc..), which is the main market for Linux graphics right now. It is unlikely that the open source drivers will ever be able to replace fglrx in that segment.
                                Go to page 6. Instead of saying CAD, maybe I should workstation, either way your not referring to the average consumer.

                                I am waiting for the open source driver to mature more. It just sucks not being able to fully utilize what I paid for. Surely anyway can understand that. The main reason I purchased an AMD card was because they were open sourcing their driver. I think a lot of progress has been made on it and I don't claim to think it will happen in a short amount of time. I'm just tired of being forced to use Windows to fully utilize my hardware just because hardware manufacturers choose not to support Linux. I'm know they are things like market share and other such business crap that drive where support is given, but I'm a computer science major. I hate business. I just like my crap to work the way it's supposed to.

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