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Open-Source GPU Drivers Causing Headaches In KDE 4.5

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  • #31
    Originally posted by airlied View Post
    So if we are to compare kwin with say something like gnome-shell as equals, granted the g-s developers are probably being funded to work on this more,
    I believe kwin devs are funded more than gnome's, indirectly. KDE is mostly being developed by Nokia employees, and they develop KDE in order to showcase their Qt toolkit...

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    • #32
      Originally posted by TemplarGR View Post
      It is called Moore's law and it is famous among computer scientists.
      I'll check on it. Thanks for your info.

      (Sorry for the double post, can't help the anti-spam rules).

      Comment


      • #33
        Originally posted by pingufunkybeat View Post
        That's not quite right.

        Gnome-shell includes the functionality from both Kwin and Plasma.

        If Kwin developers are not checking for open drivers compatibility, then it's rather unfortunate. But they've done the same thing to the binary nvidia drivers when these were broken, so I don't think that it's a slight against the Mesa developers.
        The right thing is comparing mutter to kwin.

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        • #34
          Another thing i noticed is that KDE developers consider Windows their competition.

          Well... If that is the case, then they should know that their competition not only designs its desktop environment, but its own graphic library too. It is called DirectX(3d). So, if they really want to compete with them, they should lend a hand to mesa devs and stop taking everything for granted, if they want something and is not supported, help develop it!

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          • #35
            Originally posted by rvdboom View Post
            Well, apparentely, Kwin devs are enthusiasts working on their own machines, not some paid developers by Red Hat having probably access to various hardware, thus are able to test it personnaly.
            Martin said in his blog that Kwin was trying to use functionnality advertised as supported, and that in fact it was not, making the fallbacks they have implemented useless. Since he doesn't have the equipment to test it, he obviously can't file bugs himself.
            It's likely that KWin devs should try to get more reports on different platforms instead of assuming that everything works as the binary Nvidia drivers, but you can't also ask the two or three Kwin devs, who work on their own, to be able to match a paid dev team, moreover working for the same company as the driver developper.
            I agree with Mr Bridgman approach, though. I assume Martin was on the defensive side with the bad reports coming with the KDE 4.5.X release, but blaming others is not constructive either.
            Hopefully, some good will come out of this and many bugs, revealed by this release, will be identified and fixed.
            Thing is if you want to create a desktop that runs on Linux, you need to invest something. Why don't the kwin guys get a community team of testers together and have the testers provide feedback before deploying to the greater community? Surely KDE has enough users to set something like that up?

            Even back with compiz, compiz devs asked gpu devs for work to be done, clutter guys have made sure we are aware of issues up front before they deploy. KDE seem to assume the world is perfect, when experience has long shown it not to be.

            If they'd done all their dev on an Intel box and it didn't work on the nvidia binary drivers, it would be a similiar problem, ask anyone who writes GL apps, they don't write them one card and assume they are going to work across all of them. Even in Windows that doesn't work.

            Dave.

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            • #36
              The fact that they coded up a whole driver blacklist/whitelist functionality showed that they knew there were issues with different drivers. They just never got around to testing them and figuring out which ones worked and which didn't.

              I understand that they don't personally have the ability to do so, since they only own a few machines. But it's hard to understand why they didn't put out a call for testing. They could have done so on dot.kde.org, as well as his personal blog, and i'm guessing the word would spread and a lot of the problems their currently having would have surfaced and gotten blacklisted.

              The current attitude seems to be, well, it works on my nvidia machine, and no one else stepped up to fix it.

              This is disappointing, but perhaps not unexpected. i've seen this kind of attitude from certain kde developers before And i'm a kde user myself, so i'm not just bashing here.

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              • #37
                Graphic drivers shouldn't advertise they support a feature when they in fact don't. Period.

                The fault is entirely in the drivers, and the fixes are probably one-liners (a matter of not advertising an unsupported feature until it's fully supported). There is no excuse.
                It doesn't matter if a driver only supports OpenGL 1. They would have been working fine if they hadn't claim to support more than that.

                Kwin also has white/black lists for the drivers that do/don't work, so some of the fault lies with the testers too. (that means everybody that uses KDE and sees a problem)

                The funny thing is that we're blaming the devs for lack of communication between them, when a single user could have told the kwin devs that some card doesn't work and they would have blacklisted it in no time.


                tl;dr: blame the driver devs, and blame the testers (ourselves).

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                • #38
                  Originally posted by DeiF View Post
                  Graphic drivers shouldn't advertise they support a feature when they in fact don't. Period.

                  The fault is entirely in the drivers, and the fixes are probably one-liners (a matter of not advertising an unsupported feature until it's fully supported). There is no excuse.
                  It doesn't matter if a driver only supports OpenGL 1. They would have been working fine if they hadn't claim to support more than that.
                  I don't believe driver devs do that. Besides, you can test the opensource drivers with other apps(like games for example) and those same features work. So this is not a case of false advertising.

                  Just because a driver supports a feature, doesn't mean that the implementation is without faults. So it is the application developer's duty to test his app and find out if it is working or not...

                  For example. i can play many advanced games with the radeon driver, but face many problems using compositing with kwin...

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                  • #39
                    Originally posted by airlied View Post
                    If they'd done all their dev on an Intel box and it didn't work on the nvidia binary drivers, it would be a similiar problem, ask anyone who writes GL apps, they don't write them one card and assume they are going to work across all of them. Even in Windows that doesn't work.

                    Dave.
                    This nails it...

                    Comment


                    • #40
                      Originally posted by DeiF View Post
                      Graphic drivers shouldn't advertise they support a feature when they in fact don't. Period.

                      The fault is entirely in the drivers, and the fixes are probably one-liners (a matter of not advertising an unsupported feature until it's fully supported). There is no excuse.
                      It doesn't matter if a driver only supports OpenGL 1. They would have been working fine if they hadn't claim to support more than that.

                      Kwin also has white/black lists for the drivers that do/don't work, so some of the fault lies with the testers too. (that means everybody that uses KDE and sees a problem)

                      The funny thing is that we're blaming the devs for lack of communication between them, when a single user could have told the kwin devs that some card doesn't work and they would have blacklisted it in no time.


                      tl;dr: blame the driver devs, and blame the testers (ourselves).
                      You don't live in the real world either though do you.

                      advertising features and those features having bugs or limitations is quite normal.

                      Dave.

                      Comment


                      • #41
                        Originally posted by smitty3268 View Post
                        The current attitude seems to be, well, it works on my nvidia machine, and no one else stepped up to fix it.

                        This is disappointing, but perhaps not unexpected. i've seen this kind of attitude from certain kde developers before And i'm a kde user myself, so i'm not just bashing here.
                        There is a reason for this. As i said earlier in this thread, KDE's true reason of existance has always been to showcase Qt toolkit.

                        There is nothing wrong with that of course.

                        But this is the primary reason KDE devs have this mentality, their software is meant to impress, not to be extensively used. They want to prove what qt can do, so they add new features constantly without caring much if the existing ones are stable enough.

                        That is where works for me(tm) attitude comes from. When you design something to showcase a technolodgy, what is important to you is for the technolodgy to work on your demo machine. You don't really care if it can be used on other machines, that is not your target.

                        I really like KDE, that is why i decided to keep it installed on my Arch machines even though i default to GNOME. But all these years they really fail to make me use their desktop for more than a toy...

                        Comment


                        • #42
                          Originally posted by TemplarGR View Post
                          There is a reason for this. As i said earlier in this thread, KDE's true reason of existance has always been to showcase Qt toolkit.
                          Obviously the dozens of independent developers who love opensource and KDE waste their time just for the glory of Nokia... "sighs"

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                          • #43
                            Originally posted by Apopas View Post
                            Obviously the dozens of independent developers who love opensource and KDE waste their time just for the glory of Nokia... "sighs"
                            I am not talking about peripheral apps here, i am talking about the core KDE project. This is made by Trolltech employees, not independent developers. Try contributing to core KDE and you will soon find out what is happening...

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                            • #44
                              Actually I've tired KDE 4.5.1 KWin on F14 aplha with awhide mesa bits (I believe LGLSL2 is main difference here) and it worked fine, including blur effect on Radeon X300 mobile.
                              Blur introduced some slowdown but performace while not stellar was stil acceptable. Given that X300 mobiles are no speed daemons and oss radeon drivers stilllack some features like page-flip i'd say results were quite good.

                              As far as using OGL 2.x vs 3.x I'd say for next year 2.x seems to be better idea. First because there's lots of hardware that is ~2.x capable but not really 3.x (i mean all the r300-500 chips, NVidia GF5x00-6x00 and intel chips), another thing is that in '11 most of the hardware should have decent OGL2.x capable driver, be it proprietary NVidia, FGLRX, radeong or r600g.

                              BTW I've read this blog post and there's nothing about Radeons, most of the complaints were about intel driver, so there's no need for radeon devs to be so defensive
                              But still there could be a bit better communication between kwin and drivers devs.

                              Comment


                              • #45
                                Originally posted by Xeno View Post
                                BTW I've read this blog post and there's nothing about Radeons, most of the complaints were about intel driver, so there's no need for radeon devs to be so defensive
                                But still there could be a bit better communication between kwin and drivers devs.
                                More than 90% of the Mesa code is common between intel, radeon and nouveau, and that goes up even higher with Gallium3D. There's a reason they all have roughly the same level of GL support, albeit with varying degrees of polish.

                                IMO complaining about the intel driver makes even less sense than complaining about radeon -- the intel devs do a remarkably good job exposing a decent level of functionality on their hardware, including things like software implementation of vertex processing when the hardware doesn't support it. Implementing vertex processing on the CPU may cause some unexpected performance problems for the app but it frequently works well and the alternative is to cap OpenGL support at a *very* low level.

                                Again, I don't have a problem with the original blog post, it was more of a "hey the problem is bigger than you think, it's not all our fault" discussion than a "hey the drivers suck and it's all their fault" rant, but it does expose a fundamental mismatch between the level of implementation expected by KDE developers and what is likely to be available in the near future and suggests that "assuming a high level then blacklisting the exceptions" may not be a workable strategy right now, at least for another 6 months or so. Fixing this is going to take cooperation and collaboration, and in the meantime "don't be hating on anyone" is probably the best strategy.

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