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  • Radeon Driver Gets Tear-Free X-Video

    Phoronix: Radeon Driver Gets Tear-Free X-Video

    While there still is no open-source R600/700 3D documentation or code, Pierre Ossman and AMD's Alex Deucher working on the xf86-video-ati driver have added a feature that should please those with already supported GPUs. They have added what should be tear-free X-Video support! For those using EXA acceleration with this open-source ATI driver, this feature can be enabled through the EXAVSync option in your xorg.conf...

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

  • #2
    Still tears on the 690g although not as bad. As the blog entries say:

    We now have mostly tear free rendering in the radeon driver
    /me reinstalls the nvidia card

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    • #3
      great news ... though I'll wait for packages to try it Let's hope for an update in tormod repos in upcomming days :P

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      • #4
        Being an eager beaver, I've given this new driver a try. Tear-free accel def works on my FireGL V5200, but only in fullscreen mode. Xv video doesn't seem to work in windowed mode with composite enabled. Anyone else experience this issue? If so, can someone point me to the bug tracker?

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        • #5
          Originally posted by mintcoffee View Post
          Being an eager beaver, I've given this new driver a try. Tear-free accel def works on my FireGL V5200, but only in fullscreen mode. Xv video doesn't seem to work in windowed mode with composite enabled. Anyone else experience this issue? If so, can someone point me to the bug tracker?
          https://bugs.freedesktop.org/show_bug.cgi?id=18542#c39

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          • #6
            if only using post-6.9.0-git snapshots of this driver didn't end up with blank, black screen on my box.

            oh well, i'll try again and i guess i'll finally file a bug on it.

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            • #7
              My experience so far: On r500 cards you will get corruption in windowed video with the current git-version when you're using compositing. Even without there will be some corruption, though less notable (see the bugreport oibaf linked). But Alex Deucher already created a patch which fix this issue (attached to the same bugreport), but it seems not to be in git yet.
              With the patch there's no tearing on videos without compositing, but still with compositing enabled.

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              • #8
                What does this mean for someone with a R300 card? I have a Mobility Radeon X600 and I run Ubuntu. I'm fairly new using Linux, so I get confused between the names of different sets of drivers. The binary ATI drivers are fglx I think. What are the drivers we are talking about and how can I get them? Thanks!



                Nice to meet everyone!

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                • #9
                  I think the most recent work was actually done on an r300 so you should be in good shape, although the code was only pushed yesterday so it could have problems even on another r300-family card

                  There are three commonly used drivers for ATI/AMD graphics these days :

                  - fglrx (aka Catalyst) is the closed source driver we publish - supports from R3xx and up last time I checked

                  - radeon (aka -ati) is the original open source driver for Radeon family GPUs - supports from R100 up.

                  (The "ati" driver is actually a wrapper around mach64, r128 and radeon drivers which loads the appropriate driver depending on what hardware it finds. The wrapper is not really required these days but the -ati name sticks around because the "radeon" driver source is in the xf86-video-ati project)

                  - radeonhd is a more recent open source driver project, supporting r5xx and up, source in xf86-video-radeonhd

                  Most distros include both radeon and radeonhd drivers, although you need to check which versions are included to make sure you don't have something really old.

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                  • #10
                    Okay, so I'm assuming the driver that is used on a default install of Ubuntu on my notebook would be the "- radeon (aka -ati)" drivers. If they are updated, how do I get those updates? Will I receive updates through the update manager or do I need to enable backports or anything?

                    Also, do these open source drivers support 3D acceleration or is that reserved for the binary drivers? Thanks!

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                    • #11
                      To get the tear-prevention code, though, you would need to build the radeon driver (xf86-video-ati) from git, because it's just been added.

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                      • #12
                        I believe you will get updates through the update manager but there are three driver components involved (the X driver, ie radeon/radeonhd), the drm (kernel) driver and the mesa (3d) driver) but I don't remember seeing updates for the drm or mesa drivers. Maybe someone who knows Ubuntu better can jump in.

                        The open source drivers (assuming you have all three components) currently support 3d on everything up to r5xx and rs690. 3D support for r6xx and r7xx (ie HD2xxx and higher) is being worked on now.

                        If you have a 5xx or earlier card then Ubuntu 8.10 comes up with 3d already enabled, so you can just turn on visual effects under "preferences" and enjoy the eye candy.

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                        • #13
                          To get the tear-prevention code, though, you would need to build the radeon driver (xf86-video-ati) from git, because it's just been added.
                          Yep, that's definitely worth mentioning

                          I wouldn't expect Ubuntu packagers to create an update until the next formal release of the driver, so in the meantime you would need to build from source or pick up one of the "edgers" packages -- I don't remember the URL but maybe Tormod or someone else could help.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by bridgman View Post
                            I believe you will get updates through the update manager
                            I believe Ubuntu's policy is to generally only commit bug fixes to a given version of Ubuntu after release. Backports will have feature additions, but I doubt any graphics drivers are in there.

                            Originally posted by bridgman View Post
                            The open source drivers (assuming you have all three components) currently support 3d on everything up to r5xx and rs690. 3D support for r6xx and r7xx (ie HD2xxx and higher) is being worked on now.
                            So does that mean that this won't work on (for example) my HD3850? Or just that I just won't be able to get 3d acceleration at the same time?

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by russell_h View Post
                              So does that mean that this won't work on (for example) my HD3850? Or just that I just won't be able to get 3d acceleration at the same time?
                              Right now there is no HW acceleration (2d, video, or 3d) on r6xx and up, including your HD3850. There is shadowfb support, which makes 2d and video ("X11" output) surprisingly useful, but no HW acceleration.

                              We have 2d accel working in house (agd5f got the overlapping src/dst problem fixed yesterday), and textured video "almost working" (it needs some shaders added to do YUV-RGB conversion), along with a demo program that shows how to program the engine for common 3d functions, so I think that's a good start. We are going through what we hope will be the final IP review to get all this released to the public.

                              The code and docs cover both 6xx (HD2xxx, HD3xxx) and 7xx (HD4xxx) families.
                              Last edited by bridgman; 12-05-2008, 05:29 PM.

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