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  • NVIDIA Announces New Legacy Linux Support

    Phoronix: NVIDIA Announces New Legacy Linux Support

    NVIDIA has announced today the graphics cards that are no longer supported by their mainline Linux graphics driver going forward but will be moved to a new 304.xx Linux legacy driver branch...

    http://www.phoronix.com/vr.php?view=MTE4MTM

  • #2
    Besides the Blob vs. Open Source driver discussion no one can say that Nvidia does nothing to support their customers.

    But some things that I think that are needed are KMS support and offical support from Nvidia and may be from some of ther OEMs.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Thaodan View Post
      Besides the Blob vs. Open Source driver discussion no one can say that Nvidia does nothing to support their customers.
      That's an interesting response to news about nvidia *dropping* support for a bunch of hardware.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by roland View Post
        That's an interesting response to news about nvidia *dropping* support for a bunch of hardware.
        It's not dropping support. Dropping support means actually dropping support, you know?
        Branching so they can more easily refactor and maintain newer code is not dropping, if they do keep bugfixing and updating for newer X.org releases on the branch.

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        • #5
          People keep saying that nvidia's binary blob supports hardware much longer than AMD's binary blob.. I'd like to see it all written down in a table somewhere by GeForce series, AMD series, and the last version of X.org supported.

          I think I'll start working on a table this afternoon.. Is there a good Wiki to put such a table?

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          • #6
            Too bad 304.xx makes me system randomly freeze solid.
            Still running 295.xx here, my opinion based on personal experience is 295.xx is the series they should've picked for the next legacy branch.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Sidicas View Post
              People keep saying that nvidia's binary blob supports hardware much longer than AMD's binary blob.. I'd like to see it all written down in a table somewhere by GeForce series, AMD series, and the last version of X.org supported.

              I think I'll start working on a table this afternoon.. Is there a good Wiki to put such a table?
              I hope you don't mean me, because I didn't compare anything. I've got no preference over the two of them, and I like to use the open source drivers on both, so I can't care less about what cards are supported through the blobs. I just corrected an incorrect statement.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Sidicas View Post
                I think I'll start working on a table this afternoon.. Is there a good Wiki to put such a table?
                Google Docs?

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by whitecat View Post
                  Google Docs?
                  Ya, I'll put it up on Google Docs.. So far I have AMD's cards done. AMD has been surprisingly consistent at providing Linux Proprietary Drivers for about 4 years after the hardware is released. Then after that, the Proprietary drivers don't work because Xorg and the kernel getting updated. I have it done all the way back to the R200.. Before that, it doesn't look like there were any Linux drivers at all provided by AMD so the open source drivers have a big win there as they're still going strong on Rage 128 hardware (17+ years of open source driver and still going).

                  I was thinking of creating timelines for all the graphics hardware showing the release of the hardware, proprietary driver support, open source driver support, end of proprietary support, end of open source support, etc. Just to put things into perspective.

                  I haven't even gotten to nvidia yet...

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Article
                    Going forward the 304.xx Linux legacy driver will mainly just be updated for new Linux kernel and X.Org Server compatibility along with any critical bug-fixes needed by major NVIDIA customers.
                    See that's why I keep getting so confused. nVidia *REALLY* is not dropping support at all in the same way that AMD has dropped support for cards in the past.. What I consider to be "dropped support" would be both of the following:
                    1) The proprietary driver is no longer installable at all, in newer distributions
                    2) developers are only working on the drivers for newer hardware even though there might be missing features in the older drivers.

                    Sure, nvidia might now be doing #2 for the mentioned hardware in the article. However, AMD already does both #1 and #2 for almost all their legacy hardware. So there is really a big difference about how AMD and nVidia go about treating their legacy hardware.

                    Aside from nVidia screwing Linux users with no support for Optimus and no support for Wayland, it looks like nvidia's Linux hardware support is pretty darn good, supporting the latest kernels and Xorg versions for hardware going back 10+ years with the proprietary driver. Not to mention VDPAU, while AMD really didn't do anything with UVD on Linux.
                    Last edited by Sidicas; 09-11-2012, 05:13 AM.

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                    • #11
                      Very incomplete table I made on driver timelines...

                      https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/...EVlNl95MmZRYnc

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                      • #12
                        R200 and R300 are not supported by AMD. They don't have a maintained legacy driver, like NVidia does.

                        TNT and TNT2 are not supported by NVidia. The 96.x drivers was discontinued, I think.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Sidicas View Post
                          Very incomplete table I made on driver timelines...

                          https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/...EVlNl95MmZRYnc
                          would be good to show when support for an xorg api was supported by nvidia/ati
                          nvidia have iirc not been able to support a newer xorg (and that was by 1week and over a misunderstanding). ati lag by a good few weeks if not longer.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by RealNC View Post
                            The 96.x drivers was discontinued, I think.
                            There was one last release a few days ago. It adds support for xorg-server-1.12, which is used for example by the current Ubuntu LTS. So users of Geforce 2-4 cards are still good for a few years, with the limitation that they stick to a LTS distro.

                            The driver for TNT and TNT2 (71xx) has indeed not been updated for a while now. I think, but I'm not sure, the last xorg-server it supports is 1.7

                            @Sidicas: You should use the xorg-server version (1.xx), it's much more informative than the Xorg version (7.x)

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by roland View Post
                              That's an interesting response to news about nvidia *dropping* support for a bunch of hardware.
                              Actually nvidia is doing the sanest thing possible by not bloating drivers for old cards with features they don't support anyway, while also keeping legacy code out of newer drivers

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