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The Challenge In Delivering Open-Source GPU Drivers

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  • #46
    Originally posted by jbarnes View Post
    No, this is our job, and we blew it for Sandy Bridge. We're supposed to do development well ahead of product release, and make sure distros include the necessary code to get things working (we have separate teams to do development and aid distros in backporting, though most of them can handle it by themselves these days).

    I could give you all sorts of explanations as to why this is (Sandy Bridge is a big architectural change, we made some mistakes in defining our development milestones, and we didn't work hard enough to get our changes backported), but really there's no excuse. Fortunately we've learned from this and are giving ourselves more time and planning better for Sandy Bridge's successor, Ivy Bridge.

    As for a stable ABI, yes it would definitely help situations like this and make lives easier for distros, device manufacturers, and probably users. But it would make life harder for developers, and as we all know, open source development is driven by developers, and we're a whiny and lazy bunch. (Yes, this is a flippant remark, don't take it too seriously since I omit much of the complexity behind the "life harder for developers" part that has big implications for users, distros, and device manufacturers; it's a complicated issue.)
    never mind Jesse, these things happen i guess.

    if you/other intel dev's ever get bored one day or need to clear your Linux head for a while , you might like to take a look at the AROS OSS code and port some Intel related gfx to their hidd drivers etc, you Did own and have some FUN writing code for the amiga OS once right


    • #47
      "Mesa updates come every quarter too and are generally released by Intel's own Ian Romanick."

      BTW Michael, you have probably already seen it, but Ian said he was readying a release of 7.9.1 and 7.10 for friday

      "I plan to release 7.9.1 and 7.10 on Friday
      afternoon (pacific time). I'll ping folks on IRC first, just to be sure."


      • #48

        Originally posted by allquixotic View Post
        So, conclusion? Go ahead and celebrate the victory of GNU/Linux systems in some limited demographic in Oregon, but keep in mind that on the larger scale, when factoring in especially the younger generation, the continued success of GNU/Linux is directly related to its ability to produce awe-inspiring, slick, hardware-accelerated graphics. It is becoming almost as essential as speedy internet access.
        I would just like to add that, I don't know if you folks noticed but the browser vendors are adding hardware acceleration to their tricks. No plugins, but real hardware acceleration. Have a look at the efforts by Mozilla Firefox 4, Google Chrome and IE9. I'm not just talking about OpenGL-like WebGL, I'm especially talking about faster rendering of normal pages.

        And example article:


        • #49
          Originally posted by RealNC View Post
          No, it's not a sad excuse. It's an excellent excuse. Using a computer should be easy and intuitive. Like Mac OS and Windows.

          Expecting users to deal with Git and make is ridiculous.
          I was responding to the comment about "distro dependency". You are off-topic.


          • #50
            Not just Sandy Bridge

            Originally posted by jbarnes View Post
            No, this is our job, and we blew it for Sandy Bridge.
            Not just Sandy Bridge. This just brought ongoing issues to a head.

            I've been frustrated enough to recommend to our procurement teams that Intel-based hardware be avoided entirely until things were sorted out.

            Your own Intel Desktop Boards have been mildly unstable for years under linux. It's relatively easy to provoke them to Segfault X sessions and in some cases completely lock up the system (especially the older 8xx and 9xx series boards such as the DQ965GM but I can enumerate several other examples)

            I work at a major UK university and we can't afford this kind of problem. Linux gets the blame when it's clearly a hardware/firmware fault and that plays right into the hands of MS's FUD generators.

            Having your devs state in irc sessions that they don't care about a X stability problem triggered by Firefox because the product is unsupported is not encouraging for a board less than a year old, etc - in all liklihood if you go back and address the issues with your older hardware it's likely you'll cover a lot of problems with the newer ones too.

            What's very clear is that a culture change is needed at Intel. It's intolerable that products are being certified as working with linux (and specific distros such as redhat) when they clearly don't work properly in the real world. Perhaps less reliance on software Development Vehicles and some more hands on experienxce with real world hardware is a good starting point.

            I'm trying hard not to flame, but Intel really needs a wake up call.