Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Please write about NVidia's 2D performance problems

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Please write about NVidia's 2D performance problems

    Hello,

    Over the past two years the typical linux desktop has changed a lot.The XRender API has replaced the old X drawing model and composition introduced new visual possibilties.This also means that 2D drivers are now stressed much more and in different areas than 2-3 years ago.There are ongoing complains about poor 2D performance of NVidia GPUs, about 2 years ago it started with people complaining about slow text rendering with subpixel-antialiasing, but the more programs use the XRender api, the more complaints are posted.KDE4 which uses XRender a lot and also relies on more advanced feature is really slow (I would call it almost unuseable), also FireFox3 is no joy with nvidia's binary drivers. Often nouveau drivers with their EXA architecture offer better 2D performance than the binary drivers themself.There are also people calling nvidia to open-source their 2D driver, or at least provide specs to the nouveu project, because the think open-source projects could do it a lot better and are not that revenue-driven.Most of the discussions happen in the unofficial nvidia linux support forum:http://www.nvnews.net/vbulletin/forumdisplay.php?f=14It would be great if you could write a short arcticle about this topic, maybe it would change things to the better and make nvidia recognize that although people buy the cards because of 3D scores, they don't tolerate dog-slow 2D desktops.

    Thanks
    Regi
    Anyone else interested? Anyone have their own experiences they would like to share on NVIDIA's 2D performance (or there the lack of)?
    Michael Larabel
    http://www.michaellarabel.com/

  • #2
    i believe you should write about it, they dont seem to give a damn about it themselves..

    for instance, on 8xxx, openoffice is useless, im not kidding, its really really useless.

    open OO impress, use one of its wizards to generate a sample presentation, and scrolling will litterally take SECONDS, it is really really useless.

    Software rendering is faster.

    Comment


    • #3
      Am I the only one not having these problems? Firefox 3's scrolling performance on my 9600GT subjectively feels just as smooth as I remember Firefox 2 being on my old 7600GT.

      I just tried "open OO impress, use one of its wizards to generate a sample presentation". Scrolling was smooth only while the entire presentation slide was visible. If I scroll such that part of it goes out of view and them back in, it does get a little choppy - like about 5 to 10 frames per second. But still nowhere near taking whole seconds...

      Gentoo Linux
      xorg-server version 1.3.0.0
      nvidia binary driver version 173.14.09
      Athlon 64 X2 4600+ overclocked to 2.52Ghz
      nVidia GeForce 9600GT

      Comment


      • #4
        well... i cannot comment as to whether it works for you, but all i can say is, that for the ~5 boxes i've seen with 8xxx hardware, they've all had the problems..

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Michael View Post
          Anyone else interested? Anyone have their own experiences they would like to share on NVIDIA's 2D performance (or there the lack of)?
          Yes, I have 8600M GS in my laptop and have an extremely bad performance with Ubuntu 8.04. First of all it's slow, especially text scrolling in gnome-terminal. When using Midnight Commander, trying to view/edit files is very painful. nvidia-settings -a InitialPixmapPlacement=2 (-a GlyphCache=1 doesn't work for some reason, there's no such setting in my case) helps with that, but somehow it manages to totally screw all the rest of my system, especially when I switch between windows. It's as if active window has cached fonts and everything is fast, but as soon as I switch to another window all the caches are dropped and nvidia starts rendering it cold. Note that all of this happens even without compiz. Compiz makes it worse. Compiz+Emerald make it unbearable, the delays are two and more seconds, and what's the most funny part, become noticeable without InitialPixmapPlacement=2.

          The latest 173.14 and 177.13 drivers added another bug to the mix: in gnome-terminal (and in Midnight Commander) when you edit a file and move your cursor it often leaves "trails" in its old positions and not always draws itself in its new position. Editing files is even more pain, you don't even know where you have your cursor at the moment! Press Ctrl+L and suddenly you could notice it's in the wrong line/column. Enabling TripleBuffering helps, but not always. It's still happening sometimes.

          Plus I've got an impression that 173.14/177.13 drivers have even more performance problems than 169.12 that is shipped with Ubuntu 8.04.

          Additionally, for quite some time I was attributing the slowness to Firefox 3.0 and Ubuntu 8.04 (I had performance problems on windows with early firefox alphas) and have been thinking anything from "why the hell firefox on windows works so much faster than on windows" to "what the hell did they break in Ubuntu 8.04 this time to make Linux so unbearably slow". That was until I switched to nv driver, which had absolutely no performance problems as far as I've seen. Of couse it doesn't have 3d acceleration (and some dithering problems) though, which is a showstopper for me and forces me to get back to Vista.

          Even worse is that a lot of people who scream "nvidia drivers work perfectly for me" might not even now they have the problem. They might think this is how it is supposed to work. You can spot performance problems only in the extremes on when comparing it with something else. And if they had neither it looks as if it's ok.

          All this means that it might force me and some of my friends (who don't even care for Linux but might want to try it some time in the future) to avoid NVIDIA like a fire next time. Some already did and decided to wait for the next ATI for their next upgrade. Their reputation of good Linux support turned out to be fake and I hope that more and more people will realise that.

          Plus what they don't realise is that their bad reputation on Linux causes their Windows users to reconsider buying from them next time. Just because they might want to try Linux. I can't imagine their marketing doesn't care about that.

          Comment


          • #6
            Did you ever try something else besides from Ubuntu? I can not see problems with Kanotix where X is still Xorg 7.1.1 and Firefox - there called Iceweasel is 2.0.x by default.

            Comment


            • #7
              9600GT concerned ?

              I've got no such problems with my 7600GT but I'm going to buy a 9600GT... is it affected by this regression ?

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by bacatta View Post
                I've got no such problems with my 7600GT but I'm going to buy a 9600GT... is it affected by this regression ?
                as far as i know, ALL 8xxx+ is

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Michael View Post
                  Anyone else interested? Anyone have their own experiences they would like to share on NVIDIA's 2D performance (or there the lack of)?
                  I'm absolutely interested what nVidia has to say about this. I become more aware of this problem whe I started testing KDE 4.1 beta 1. I couldn't figure out why my poor laptop with integrated ATI graphics and FOSS drivers is runing just fine and on my dual core machine with nVidia 7600GS everything is so slow. Digging further into this people also told me that KDE 4 is built on Qt 4 toolkit and Qt 4 relies much more on modern XRender architecture which appears to be dog slow on nVidia. Later I found out about a simple XRender Benchark and this one only proved how many times faster integrated ATI is compared to mVidia and their bad drivers. This has come to get out so more people is avare of this and nVidia starts doing something to correct this bad performance.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I have a 8600GTS running fine here. It runs on an old X server though: 6.8.2, and I don't run anything fancy. Mostly Gtk2 and some KDE3 applications (gwenview being to most 2D-graphics intensive I guess).

                    I have a mainboard with a K8M890 chipset, and a 3200+, pretty old stuff also.

                    Perhaps it's good to know what hardware the people have who experience these problems. There may be a relation to chipset/platform and these performance issues.

                    About X-render, I found this article on Phoronix: http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?pag...item=934&num=1 ; dated 3 december 2007. I can't find the benchmark with the E's though.

                    An old 2003 article on slashdot ( http://developers.slashdot.org/artic.../08/16/0034235 ) may also be of interest. I think it mentions the benchmark used in the phoronix article.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I found render_bench, the benchmark application with the E's. it's located right here: http://www.rasterman.com/files/render_bench.tar.gz ; these are my results:

                      EDIT: some extra info about the test system in question:

                      Nvidia board: 8600GTS
                      X Window System Version: 6.8.2,
                      driver version: 173.14.09
                      kernel: 2.6.24.2chromis
                      .config.: http://www.chromis.nl/vanalles/config.gz
                      chipset & cpu: VIA K8M890, AMD 939 3200+
                      running in 32 bit!
                      Code:
                      Available XRENDER filters:
                      nearest
                      bilinear
                      fast
                      good
                      best
                      Setup...
                      *** ROUND 1 ***
                      ---------------------------------------------------------------
                      Test: Test Xrender doing non-scaled Over blends
                      Time: 0.068 sec.
                      ---------------------------------------------------------------
                      Test: Test Xrender (offscreen) doing non-scaled Over blends
                      Time: 0.080 sec.
                      ---------------------------------------------------------------
                      Test: Test Imlib2 doing non-scaled Over blends
                      Time: 0.224 sec.
                      *** ROUND 2 ***
                      ---------------------------------------------------------------
                      Test: Test Xrender doing 1/2 scaled Over blends
                      Time: 0.031 sec.
                      ---------------------------------------------------------------
                      Test: Test Xrender (offscreen) doing 1/2 scaled Over blends
                      Time: 0.031 sec.
                      ---------------------------------------------------------------
                      Test: Test Imlib2 doing 1/2 scaled Over blends
                      Time: 0.110 sec.
                      *** ROUND 3 ***
                      ---------------------------------------------------------------
                      Test: Test Xrender doing 2* smooth scaled Over blends
                      Time: 0.067 sec.
                      ---------------------------------------------------------------
                      Test: Test Xrender (offscreen) doing 2* smooth scaled Over blends
                      Time: 0.069 sec.
                      ---------------------------------------------------------------
                      Test: Test Imlib2 doing 2* smooth scaled Over blends
                      Time: 2.140 sec.
                      *** ROUND 4 ***
                      ---------------------------------------------------------------
                      Test: Test Xrender doing 2* nearest scaled Over blends
                      Time: 0.066 sec.
                      ---------------------------------------------------------------
                      Test: Test Xrender (offscreen) doing 2* nearest scaled Over blends
                      Time: 0.069 sec.
                      ---------------------------------------------------------------
                      Test: Test Imlib2 doing 2* nearest scaled Over blends
                      Time: 1.466 sec.
                      *** ROUND 6 ***
                      ---------------------------------------------------------------
                      Test: Test Xrender doing general nearest scaled Over blends
                      Time: 0.117 sec.
                      ---------------------------------------------------------------
                      Test: Test Xrender (offscreen) doing general nearest scaled Over blends
                      Time: 0.122 sec.
                      ---------------------------------------------------------------
                      Test: Test Imlib2 doing general nearest scaled Over blends
                      Time: 3.220 sec.
                      *** ROUND 7 ***
                      ---------------------------------------------------------------
                      Test: Test Xrender doing general smooth scaled Over blends
                      Time: 0.118 sec.
                      ---------------------------------------------------------------
                      Test: Test Xrender (offscreen) doing general smooth scaled Over blends
                      Time: 0.122 sec.
                      ---------------------------------------------------------------
                      Test: Test Imlib2 doing general smooth scaled Over blends
                      Time: 5.597 sec.
                      Last edited by chromis; 06-28-2008, 04:46 AM.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        It's also one of the tests in PTS, though I forgot which (maybe in x11perf).

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Kano View Post
                          Did you ever try something else besides from Ubuntu? I can not see problems with Kanotix where X is still Xorg 7.1.1 and Firefox - there called Iceweasel is 2.0.x by default.
                          Well, all I've been trying lately are latest Ubuntu and Sabayon: both must be using recent xorg, so it doesn't count. And even if it works under Xorg 7.1, it might be good for some people, but not for me. Xorg 7.3 was released in September 2007, that's 9 months for NVIDIA to adapt.

                          Also I just noticed something. There must have been something with the way I was installing the drivers, after latest attempts I found that I can finally set GlyphCache=1, though I can't say how much it helps.

                          However there's something else I found. When I was using firefox on 173.14.09 with InitialPixmapPlacement=2 and GlyphCache=1 I stumbed upon a relatively big picture that firefox had to scale down. This turned into almost ten seconds of work at which time gnome didn't even respond to my clicks. Just to check it I tried this with nv (everything was fast) as well as with InitialPixmapPlacement=1 (scaling was fast as well).

                          I don't know how firefox scales pictures (and what strange effect is at play here), but 5-10 seconds for 842x1032 is a little over the edge for me. :-/

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by chromis View Post
                            I found render_bench, the benchmark application with the E's. it's located right here: http://www.rasterman.com/files/render_bench.tar.gz ; these are my results:
                            Looks like it's magnitudes slower for me:

                            Code:
                            Available XRENDER filters:
                            nearest
                            bilinear
                            convolution
                            fast
                            good
                            best
                            Setup...
                            *** ROUND 1 ***
                            ---------------------------------------------------------------
                            Test: Test Xrender doing non-scaled Over blends
                            Time: 0.322 sec.
                            ---------------------------------------------------------------
                            Test: Test Xrender (offscreen) doing non-scaled Over blends
                            Time: 0.567 sec.
                            ---------------------------------------------------------------
                            Test: Test Imlib2 doing non-scaled Over blends
                            Time: 0.305 sec.
                            *** ROUND 2 ***
                            ---------------------------------------------------------------
                            Test: Test Xrender doing 1/2 scaled Over blends
                            Time: 0.195 sec.
                            ---------------------------------------------------------------
                            Test: Test Xrender (offscreen) doing 1/2 scaled Over blends
                            Time: 0.201 sec.
                            ---------------------------------------------------------------
                            Test: Test Imlib2 doing 1/2 scaled Over blends
                            Time: 0.114 sec.
                            *** ROUND 3 ***
                            ---------------------------------------------------------------
                            Test: Test Xrender doing 2* smooth scaled Over blends
                            Time: 0.557 sec.
                            ---------------------------------------------------------------
                            Test: Test Xrender (offscreen) doing 2* smooth scaled Over blends
                            Time: 0.568 sec.
                            ---------------------------------------------------------------
                            Test: Test Imlib2 doing 2* smooth scaled Over blends
                            Time: 3.674 sec.
                            *** ROUND 4 ***
                            ---------------------------------------------------------------
                            Test: Test Xrender doing 2* nearest scaled Over blends
                            Time: 0.164 sec.
                            ---------------------------------------------------------------
                            Test: Test Xrender (offscreen) doing 2* nearest scaled Over blends
                            Time: 0.169 sec.
                            ---------------------------------------------------------------
                            Test: Test Imlib2 doing 2* nearest scaled Over blends
                            Time: 1.632 sec.
                            *** ROUND 6 ***
                            ---------------------------------------------------------------
                            Test: Test Xrender doing general nearest scaled Over blends
                            Time: 0.314 sec.
                            ---------------------------------------------------------------
                            Test: Test Xrender (offscreen) doing general nearest scaled Over blends
                            Time: 0.322 sec.
                            ---------------------------------------------------------------
                            Test: Test Imlib2 doing general nearest scaled Over blends
                            Time: 2.801 sec.
                            *** ROUND 7 ***
                            ---------------------------------------------------------------
                            Test: Test Xrender doing general smooth scaled Over blends
                            Time: 0.317 sec.
                            ---------------------------------------------------------------
                            Test: Test Xrender (offscreen) doing general smooth scaled Over blends
                            Time: 0.323 sec.
                            ---------------------------------------------------------------
                            Test: Test Imlib2 doing general smooth scaled Over blends
                            Time: 12.060 sec.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Here are my results on Gentoo with the latest NVIDIA drivers at the time of this writing:

                              NVIDIA Board: 8800 GTS 512MB (G92)
                              X Window System Version: 7.2 (X.Org V11, R0, Rel. 1.3)
                              Driver Version: 173.14.09
                              Kernel: 2.6.25-gentoo-r5
                              .config.: http://pastebin.com/f4152601c
                              Chipset, CPU: Intel P35, Intel C2D E6850
                              Running in 64-bit!

                              Code:
                              Available XRENDER filters:
                              nearest
                              bilinear
                              convolution
                              fast
                              good
                              best
                              Setup...
                              *** ROUND 1 ***
                              ---------------------------------------------------------------
                              Test: Test Xrender doing non-scaled Over blends
                              Time: 0.058 sec.
                              ---------------------------------------------------------------
                              Test: Test Xrender (offscreen) doing non-scaled Over blends
                              Time: 0.089 sec.
                              ---------------------------------------------------------------
                              Test: Test Imlib2 doing non-scaled Over blends
                              Time: 0.252 sec.
                              *** ROUND 2 ***
                              ---------------------------------------------------------------
                              Test: Test Xrender doing 1/2 scaled Over blends
                              Time: 0.028 sec.
                              ---------------------------------------------------------------
                              Test: Test Xrender (offscreen) doing 1/2 scaled Over blends
                              Time: 0.035 sec.
                              ---------------------------------------------------------------
                              Test: Test Imlib2 doing 1/2 scaled Over blends
                              Time: 0.090 sec.
                              *** ROUND 3 ***
                              ---------------------------------------------------------------
                              Test: Test Xrender doing 2* smooth scaled Over blends
                              Time: 0.044 sec.
                              ---------------------------------------------------------------
                              Test: Test Xrender (offscreen) doing 2* smooth scaled Over blends
                              Time: 0.058 sec.
                              ---------------------------------------------------------------
                              Test: Test Imlib2 doing 2* smooth scaled Over blends
                              Time: 2.146 sec.
                              *** ROUND 4 ***
                              ---------------------------------------------------------------
                              Test: Test Xrender doing 2* nearest scaled Over blends
                              Time: 0.050 sec.
                              ---------------------------------------------------------------
                              Test: Test Xrender (offscreen) doing 2* nearest scaled Over blends
                              Time: 0.052 sec.
                              ---------------------------------------------------------------
                              Test: Test Imlib2 doing 2* nearest scaled Over blends
                              Time: 0.751 sec.
                              *** ROUND 6 ***
                              ---------------------------------------------------------------
                              Test: Test Xrender doing general nearest scaled Over blends
                              Time: 0.054 sec.
                              ---------------------------------------------------------------
                              Test: Test Xrender (offscreen) doing general nearest scaled Over blends
                              Time: 0.063 sec.
                              ---------------------------------------------------------------
                              Test: Test Imlib2 doing general nearest scaled Over blends
                              Time: 1.822 sec.
                              *** ROUND 7 ***
                              ---------------------------------------------------------------
                              Test: Test Xrender doing general smooth scaled Over blends
                              Time: 0.061 sec.
                              ---------------------------------------------------------------
                              Test: Test Xrender (offscreen) doing general smooth scaled Over blends
                              Time: 0.063 sec.
                              ---------------------------------------------------------------
                              Test: Test Imlib2 doing general smooth scaled Over blends
                              Time: 6.888 sec.
                              Given chromis' results, that sounds pretty much like where it should be. So it's fast here too, if I'm interpreting it right.
                              Last edited by borgus; 06-28-2008, 12:16 PM. Reason: Updated with more detailed system info at chromis' request

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X