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Intel's Poulsbo Driver A Bloody Mess?

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  • #16
    First, to keep hopes from getting too high, there is not any work on this, nor is any work planned. That said...

    My employer, Oregon State University, is deploying a series of handhelds, called the OSWALD, which has a similar chipset (GMA 535, same as Beagle Board.) We have discussed the matter, and if we take care of the basic obligations, such as distro management and package generation, and get all the other chips up and running in a timely manner, we can talk to the legal advisors and see whether or not REing the Texas Instrument blob for that chipset would be something that the university could fund.

    This is all still theoretical, of course. But it is possible.

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    • #17
      Intel credibility

      This thing certainly hurts established "Everything Intel Just Works (TM)" mentality inside Linux community. Sometimes it is incredible how short-sighted moves can be done by such huge companies

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      • #18
        Originally posted by Ex-Cyber View Post
        I think the problem here is more Imagination Technologies than Intel, and Intel is far from being their only customer. Without convincing them, the options for proper support are going to be limited. The PowerVR variant in Dreamcast has been pretty well reverse-engineered, but I don't know how similar it is to the current stuff.
        I think the Sega Dreamcast uses a PowerVR Series 2 chipset whereas the PowerVR SGX 535 used by intel is a Series 5 chipset. I don't know how similar they are.

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        • #19
          Oh it seems that the palm pre, and nokia's successor to the n810 are also expected to have PowerVR SGX cores.

          Maybe if there is enough interested and enough developers here we can form a group to create fully free drivers for the hardware? It would probably help if there were people willing who have done X.org driver development and someone who was familiar with clean room reverse engineering.

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          • #20
            Since this driver seems to be in such poor shape, perhaps they should cease work on it and instead start from scratch on a Gallium3D driver.

            Unless off course the idea from MostAwesemeDude pans out.

            Still, the more Gallium3D drivers we have, the less driver maintenance needed in the future.

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            • #21
              Thanks for bringing this up.

              To complete this mess, Intel does not have only one badly(non?) functioning, closed-source GMA500 driver... No! They have two closed-sourced, bad functioning GMA500 drivers:

              Intel Embedded Graphics Driver (IEGD)
              http://www.intel.com/design/intarch/...cs_drivers.htm

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              • #22
                It wouldnt surprise me if there are some customers (either those building PowerVR IP into their SoCs/chipsets/etc or those building actual devices featuring chips containing PowerVR IP) that would rather NOT see open source drivers for the PowerVR stuff in their chips/devices.

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                • #23
                  Originally posted by Ant P. View Post
                  Ow... that just completely crushed my enthusiasm for getting a Pandora. My eee may be technically inferior, but at least I know it's supported...
                  well the pandora it is supported
                  by the imtec drives
                  i don't nou way intel did not use the imtec Linux drives
                  they are bloop drives still they work far better than the intel tungsten drivers
                  p.s pandora people have the drives and they did show a 3d demo

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                  • #24
                    Originally posted by argor View Post
                    well the pandora it is supported
                    by the imtec drives
                    i don't nou way intel did not use the imtec Linux drives
                    they are bloop drives still they work far better than the intel tungsten drivers
                    p.s pandora people have the drives and they did show a 3d demo
                    I'm sorry, but if you're referring to the Byterapers' Treed3D 2.0 demo, it's using the crippled*, closed source OpenGL ES 2.0 driver. Intel commissioned the development of their own driver because there was actually no (full) OpenGL implementation available for the SGX series.

                    * The PowerVR SGX specifications exceed the OpenGL 3.0 (not ES!) requirements.

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                    • #25
                      Originally posted by drag View Post
                      Note that the PowerVR SGX stuff is used in much more then just the Dell Mini-12.

                      It's used in other architectures. For example the OMAP3 being used in the OpenPandora Handheld and the developer oriented BeagleBoard has the PowerVR SGX chipset.
                      Thankfully (it's a mixed bag, though...), the OMAP3 crowd has drivers written by Imagination Technologies and the GPL compatible kernel wedges showed up last month. The Pandora kernel team's working on verification of things right now on that front. We have working 3D that works against modern kernels and distributions...for now...

                      So it's especially bad because the proprietary x86 driver won't work in x86-64, nor will it work in the ARM platform. People shipping PowerVR-based graphics in ARM will need their own, seperate, proprietary Linux driver.
                      Actually... They will only need ONE driver. The one TI's providing to people right at the moment- there's a GPLed kernel wedge and then two proprietary ES 1.1 and 2.0 API libraries you link against. This is for ANYTHING using the OMAP3 right at the moment, including Beagleboard, Pandora, and Nokia's N9XX series devices.

                      It's still a problem, but it's not as bad as you're making out to be. I'd dearly love beyond words to see ImgTec turn around and provide info on how to push the limits on their chip. But, that's not happening and as long as they're doing the "right thing" a' la NVidia, for now, that'll work.

                      It's a clusterf*k alright. With a open source driver you'd be able to update your code as well as created a unified driver that will be easily made to work across lots of different devices irregardless of the actual architecture.
                      You're preaching to the choir. VIA's apparently figured this one out. Intel's done it too (They can't do it with the GMA500 as it's NOT theirs to do it with, but with the other GMA's and Larabee, they are...). Same with AMD- and it's the one with the most potential and promise on the desktop. It's just Imagination, NVidia, and S3 that're being a pain right at the moment.

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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by HyperDrive View Post
                        I'm sorry, but if you're referring to the Byterapers' Treed3D 2.0 demo, it's using the crippled*, closed source OpenGL ES 2.0 driver.
                        what is so crippled about the driver they were were the beta OpenGL ES
                        drives yes they are blop drives whith GPL compatible kernel wedges
                        just like Nvidia
                        Intel commissioned the development of their own driver because there was actually no (full) OpenGL implementation available for the SGX series.
                        * The PowerVR SGX specifications exceed the OpenGL 3.0 (not ES!) requirements.
                        did powervr not provided intel whith complete OpenGL reference drivers
                        it is up to intel whatever to use them or not
                        here is also interesting read http://forum.beyond3d.com/showthread.php?t=50430

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                        • #27
                          Originally posted by argor View Post
                          what is so crippled about the driver they were were the beta OpenGL ES
                          drives yes they are blop drives whith GPL compatible kernel wedges
                          just like Nvidia
                          Ideology aside (since I personally lean towards "the Stallman way" instead of "the Torvalds way" of doing things), OpenGL ES 2.0 is a strict subset of OpenGL 2.0. According to the specifications (i. e., unless Imagination Technologies is lying), the PowerVR SGX is fully OpenGL 3.0 capable. That's deliberate crippling in my book.

                          did powervr not provided intel whith complete OpenGL reference drivers
                          it is up to intel whatever to use them or not
                          here is also interesting read http://forum.beyond3d.com/showthread.php?t=50430
                          No, they didn't, according to the 8th post in the thread you mention.
                          Last edited by HyperDrive; 02-05-2009, 08:18 AM.

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                          • #28
                            Originally posted by HyperDrive View Post
                            Ideology aside (since I personally lean towards "the Stallman way" instead of "the Torvalds way" of doing things), OpenGL ES 2.0 is a strict subset of OpenGL 2.0. According to the specifications (i. e., unless Imagination Technologies is lying), the PowerVR SGX is fully OpenGL 3.0 capable. That's deliberate crippling in my book.
                            no it is up to TI what they support or not they did desited to only provided support for opengl es 1.1 and 2.0
                            just like Intel could provided support for opengl es
                            it just depend on what marked you are in what is useful or not
                            No, they didn't, according to the 8th post on the thread you mention.
                            that post dose not say anything
                            the licenser they desited what they want just like ti wanted only OpenGL ES/VG drivers for OMAP3
                            Last edited by argor; 02-05-2009, 12:45 PM.

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                            • #29
                              Does anyone have access to this page:
                              https://blueprints.edge.launchpad.ne...ackaging/+edit ? My launchpad account sure does not

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                              • #30
                                Originally posted by HyperDrive View Post
                                One thing is for sure, my acquisition of an MSI Wind U115 netbook depends on the availability of a free and open source GMA500 Xorg driver.
                                Just for the record, since I just don't have time/patience/whatever to wait for the end of this "soap opera", I voted with my euros and got myself an Eee PC 901 yesterday. Iff the PowerVR is reverse-engineered, maybe I'll get myself a BeagleBoard to hack around.

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