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S3 Graphics Releases Linux Driver With OpenGL 3.0, VA-API

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  • S3 Graphics Releases Linux Driver With OpenGL 3.0, VA-API

    Phoronix: S3 Graphics Releases Linux Driver With OpenGL 3.0, VA-API

    For months we have seen S3 Graphics advertise a magical Linux driver in their press releases that promised to offer OpenGL 3.0 support and advanced video functionality. They had reported to us the driver would be released in December, but that deadline had passed and they continued to announce Linux support when launching the Chrome 540 GTX, but still there was nothing. However, S3 Graphics has now actually delivered such a driver! They have delivered a Chrome 500 series Linux driver that not only provides OpenGL 3.0 support but also H.264, VC-1, and MPEG-2 hardware decoding on the GPU. While it may appear to be good, this driver is still far from perfect.

    http://www.phoronix.com/vr.php?view=13546

  • #2
    damn, even S3 is pwn'ing ATi

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    • #3
      I guess nobody really tested that card with Linux yet. The drivers are 32 bit only and contain a binary blob for the kernel module. So they have to change the licence for it to S3 or whatever - at least not GPL.

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      • #4
        All the same...

        Where is the flying pig picture?

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        • #5
          What's happen ATI ?

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          • #6
            Originally posted by cruiseoveride View Post
            damn, even S3 is pwn'ing ATi
            fglrx isn't the greatest, but if you really believe S3's drivers are better, then I've got some ocean-front property in Bolivia I'd like to sell you.

            Or maybe you're just a frustrated ATI customer that wanted to take a shot at ATI...

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            • #7
              I seriously think that any claims by s3 at this point should be taken with a grain of salt. The fact that their decidedly closed-source driver modules report themselves as GPL ought to tell you something.

              If there's someone with a Chrome 500 who can test this driver, *then* maybe we can find out how well it actually works and what its actual capabilities are.

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              • #8
                Who makes gfx cards based S3 chips? I wanna try.

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                • #9
                  I hope that soon enough, you'll be able to test the driver, and the hardware on Linux, Michael. I'd really be interested in seeing how well it performs, how does it compare to the earlier tests you ran on cheap hardware and nVidia GFX with VDPAU and how well does it do 3D compared to Intel, nVidia and ATi (on reasonably similar hardware... Do we even know how many stream processors the 500 series pack or if it has a vertex engine? How about memory interface, etc?)

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                  • #10
                    S3 is already violating the GPL by distributing the binary without the source. They obviously need to claim it's GPL in order to use Linux's GPL'ed symbols. So now it's up to someone who owns copyright to the Linux kernel to sue their behind.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Thetargos View Post
                      I hope that soon enough, you'll be able to test the driver, and the hardware on Linux, Michael. I'd really be interested in seeing how well it performs, how does it compare to the earlier tests you ran on cheap hardware and nVidia GFX with VDPAU and how well does it do 3D compared to Intel, nVidia and ATi (on reasonably similar hardware... Do we even know how many stream processors the 500 series pack or if it has a vertex engine? How about memory interface, etc?)
                      Yes, this would be interesting. S3 has some interesting technologies, especially the ability to use anisotropic filtering without any framerate drop.

                      Though, it would be cool for them to create some real drivers for linux with up to speed Xorg and kernel support if they decide to continue the proprietary method _completely_. If not, try what AMD is doing and hire someone to work on the open source driver too.

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                      • #12
                        Non-free drivers are worthless. I would have bought a Chrome if they'd ship source under an apropriate license, but this way, I'm just not interested. At all.

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                        • #13
                          Lol, to be honest, I am shell-shocked. The fact that they came up with something apparently even remotely working is beyond my wildest imaginations, let alone issues like license, new hardware, amd64 arch, features and quality.

                          All this time I took it as hoax/vaporware and thought Phoronix was having some cheap fun going after clueless chicken in S3's PR dept.

                          In any case, since it will head towards nowhere, I just have to say, this is what it called *epic fail*.

                          (Just a reminder - this is *2009* and if you can't even create a 3d driver with compositing, you shouldn't use the term linux support. Vesa can do better .)

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                          • #14
                            I haven't seen the drivers but judging by the GL string whether it supports 3.0 is wrong. Officially 3.0 should be reported when a opengl 3.0 capable glx context is created using GLX_ARB_create_context. That's the official way. Unfortunately Nvidia broke with that rule in a recent 180.x release likely for marketing reasons. If S3 supports GLX_ARB_create_context then they have OpenGL 3.0 support.

                            I just checked their libGL.so and they do have GLX_ARB_create_context / glXCreateContextAttribsARB, so they really support OpenGL 3.0. Please update the article.
                            Last edited by Thunderbird; 02-28-2009, 03:30 AM.

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                            • #15
                              Quite surprised by this.

                              I'd like to see an article testing this, comparing performance with similar price-ranged cards from ATi and nVIDIA.

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