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AMD Catalyst 11.12 For Linux Is A Mixed Bag

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  • #16
    How about much more Linux hotfix drivers? Only for opengl version updates a preview driver is a bit stupid, for win games there are up to 3/4 hotfix drivers sometimes after the final release. But the Linux bugs are really annoying and that 3 month development delay for fixes is stupid as well...

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    • #17
      Originally posted by bridgman View Post
      Are you saying the driver has not improved, or just that there are things you still don't like ?

      There's no "e" in Bridgman, by the way
      I think if I had to pick the most annoying bug in KDE right now, it's not even a KDE bug. It's a bug of Adobe Flash. Specifically, Adobe Flash and qtwebkit, and never the two shall meet, or....BOOM!! Flash expects some Mozilla Gecko behavior or it throws a fit and crashes the browser. Chrome and Opera emulate this well enough that they usually don't crash, but qtwebkit and khtml do crash.

      Using Firefox doesn't save you from a lot of Flash crashes, they designed an entire out of process plugin system to paper over bad plugins like Flash.

      Just making a point that Adobe just assumes everyone uses Chrome or Firefox, and if not, then eat shit!

      Your company's Catalyst driver is pretty much the same exact story. It does not play well with others.

      The sooner Flash dies the better. HTML 5 and friends will expose bugs, but those bugs will probably be in the rendering engine's implementation or an open specification that can be revised on the spot.

      Flash and nonfree video drivers are like a rolling roadblock.

      AMD Catalyst says it supports Linux, but it does not. "Use Ubuntu" is frequently what they'll tell you. So you hate Unity, but you figure Kubuntu is close enough, wrong. "Well, we don't support KDE, it might work, use Unity if you're having problems". Super... *head desk*

      So now if you don't want the desktop and X and kernel to expose limitations in AMD's horrible driver, you will use Ubuntu with Unity (and sometimes get problems that only AMD can fix anyway. This sounds oddly familiar, because this happens with Flash too. THey don't care that people want choice. They say "Use Firefox or eat shit" and you will use Firefox or you will eat shit (or you can hope that the unsupported software you want to use figures out what the proprietary software is doing wrong and implements workarounds, don't count on this.).

      Then if you buy proprietary media codecs because you can't sleep at night knowing that some MPEG-LA lawyer missed a buck, you can only use the Gstreamer multimedia framework because that's all Fluendo supports.

      Here's where I get to the point. I do have a point. Every time you use proprietary software to provide some core functionality, you're whittling down your choices of what software you can still use without it exploding, and I hope you like Gstreamer applications on Ubuntu with Unity while making sure you don't use the latest X server or Linux kernel, while browsing with Firefox, or Chrome, and sometimes Opera, and hoping that interactions between the nonfree software itself doesn't cause your system to explode anyway.

      Throwing in proprietary software when there's functional free and open software does your users a monumental disservice. It gives them bugs that they can't fix, and you can't either. It takes away their choice of software that they'd really rather use and turns it into a least common denominator like Ubuntu.

      I'd like it if Ubuntu's Jockey thing stopped popping up and proclaiming that error prone video drivers like AMD Catalyst are some kind of an upgrade. "To bring full functionality...blah blah"

      No, crashing X when I play a video, if the system even boots back up at all, is not better than what I have now! DIE DIE DIE!!!!


      Regards.

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      • #18
        Hmm, I wonder if it plays nicely with openSUSE 12.1 now. The current FGLRX I have installed here causes corruption with KWin on, and didn't even install properly on first try.

        As for FGLRX vs Radeon... Radeon is pretty neat, I got to give them that, no problems with KWin and the OpenGL application I'm developing works better (I get blackening with FGLRX if I have another window on it, and the only way to solve that would be to waste the system resources by redrawing a static screen constantly...). However, Radeon outright crashes Wine on certain Wine applications I need, so it's a no-go.

        As for FGLRX vs NVIDIA drivers... My friend tried to install NVIDIA drivers for his card, and he had *more* trouble installing it than I ever had with FGLRX. So yeah, FGLRX is bad, NVIDIA is bad, opensource drivers are bad, Intel's cards are underpowered... Pick your poison.

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        • #19
          Originally posted by GreatEmerald View Post
          Hmm, I wonder if it plays nicely with openSUSE 12.1 now. The current FGLRX I have installed here causes corruption with KWin on, and didn't even install properly on first try.

          As for FGLRX vs Radeon... Radeon is pretty neat, I got to give them that, no problems with KWin and the OpenGL application I'm developing works better (I get blackening with FGLRX if I have another window on it, and the only way to solve that would be to waste the system resources by redrawing a static screen constantly...). However, Radeon outright crashes Wine on certain Wine applications I need, so it's a no-go.

          As for FGLRX vs NVIDIA drivers... My friend tried to install NVIDIA drivers for his card, and he had *more* trouble installing it than I ever had with FGLRX. So yeah, FGLRX is bad, NVIDIA is bad, opensource drivers are bad, Intel's cards are underpowered... Pick your poison.
          FGLRX is an old driver with lots of bugs that was designed around driver architectures that have been obsolete for years. It's proprietary and it's never caught up with the free software it claims to work with. It has so few developers that instead of concentrating on X and Linux, they tell everyone to use Ubuntu or RHEL or SUSE even if that doesn't work well for them, and then even if you do there are always bugs that make it totally unusable.

          It's basically the same driver every month with superficial changes and some more pciids from what I can gather.

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          • #20
            Originally posted by DaemonFC View Post
            FGLRX is an old driver with lots of bugs that was designed around driver architectures that have been obsolete for years.
            C'mon be fair, I thought they got rid of the old cruft some (~2?) years ago and switched to a modern architecture.
            It's not all that bad in Catalyst land. Still, the policy of having bug fixes ready only after 3+ month is a clear no go.
            I hope they'll change their mind and release selected beta drivers in the near future.

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            • #21
              I like Catalyst. It works fine for me.

              I got only a single problem with latest two releases (KWin crashes with desktop effect enabled if "Scale method" is set to the default "Accurate" value...).

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              • #22
                I don't want to give the impression im trolling AMD, but seriously, i'm really used to GNOME shell, and I don't feel like switching to something else because my graphics card doesn't want to work with it.
                The temporary solution is to use the open source graphics, but well, if I knew I was going to be stuck with poor OpenGL performance, I would have rather chosen Intel and saved a lot of money.
                If I simply don't get an estimation on when some bug is going to be fixed, I can't just wait for ever.

                What would make me really really happy? To see AMD kill FGLRX and focus on the Open Source driver.. but thats not going to happen.

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                • #23
                  Originally posted by bridgman View Post
                  Are you saying the driver has not improved, or just that there are things you still don't like ?
                  It fails to catch up. Yes, if I install a Linux distro from 2007, then it has improved. But in 2011, I expect certain things that were not there in 2007. And in this regard, fglrx fails. Yes, those things will be fixed by 2015. But by them, I will again expect more things that will be considered standard at that point.

                  And then there's the bugs. Is there any chance the input lag will be fixed when enabling the "Tear-free" option? Will we ever get correct colors with Xv?

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                  • #24
                    I do think it would be nice if fglrx was dropped on linux altogether. The radeon driver is better in every way except for opengl/glsl and power management. For now, my temporary solution is running the fglrx driver on tear-free mode without compositing on.

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                    • #25
                      :-(

                      Originally posted by frie2 View Post
                      I do think it would be nice if fglrx was dropped on linux altogether. The radeon driver is better in every way except for opengl/glsl and power management. For now, my temporary solution is running the fglrx driver on tear-free mode without compositing on.
                      Well, if i look at what the catalyst is doing for me, the conclusion is: the thing really is dropped on linux already. This crap has been nonfunctional with my preferred desktop (gnome 3) all the time. So for me, the driver package is non-existent. This company is dead to me. Completely.

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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by GreatEmerald View Post
                        So yeah, FGLRX is bad, NVIDIA is bad, opensource drivers are bad, Intel's cards are underpowered... Pick your poison.
                        You forgot those: it's never the user's fault... Nor do the driver ever happen to uncover a bug in another package... The list goes on

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                        • #27
                          Originally posted by GrrlTlak View Post
                          Well, if i look at what the catalyst is doing for me, the conclusion is: the thing really is dropped on linux already. This crap has been nonfunctional with my preferred desktop (gnome 3) all the time. So for me, the driver package is non-existent. This company is dead to me. Completely.
                          Unreliable Proprietary Software and Me: This sort of thing ain't my bag, baby! by DaemonFC

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                          • #28
                            ... a sad state of affairs....
                            And to say I just ordered a 6870.... I'm beginning to regret my purchase without even having receiving it yet.
                            Using windows makes me sad.
                            It looks like my next card in 2 years will be nvidia

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                            • #29
                              First of all you can certainly use Linux, KDE works ok with fglrx, maybe a few delays here and there, but you could think that is normal when you don't have got a comparison. If you want to use video players in default config stay away of xserver 1.11 until the xv crashing bug is fixed. The new xbmc branch with xvba support may be worth a try as well when you dont have got h264 l5.1 videos. Just dont expect miracles from fglrx, when there is a bug in one driver release be sure it will be in the next 2-3 releases as well especially because of the well known extra stupid release way, nobody needs 12 half backed drivers, just a driver after every new kernel/xorg release which are fully compatible. Or at least preview drivers to see if they will fix something... That this release way does not work is 100% clear, as you see the same when you search for a rage performance driver, there have been 2 official release drivers, none of em with all rage fixes, but at least 4 preview drivers with special fixes, maybe i forgot one or two...

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                              • #30
                                Noticable improvements but still some way to go

                                With GNOME3, gnome-shell has not crashed for two days. That is a good step forward,
                                However, The overall performance is still a bit choppy, as if the overall screen refresh rate was like 15Hz or so.
                                It affects everything - moving windows, the overview screen transistions and video playback.
                                That does not happen at all in Gnome3 fallback mode, nor with the xfce desktop.

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