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X Server 1.11 Breaks The Video Driver ABI

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  • X Server 1.11 Breaks The Video Driver ABI

    Phoronix: X Server 1.11 Breaks The Video Driver ABI

    While not exactly uncommon for a major X.Org Server update, the video driver ABI for the DDX drivers will break with the forthcoming xorg-server 1.11 release. This means that for those using the proprietary graphics drivers, namely the AMD Catalyst driver, you may be stuck waiting a couple of months for support...

    http://www.phoronix.com/vr.php?view=OTQ3NA

  • #2
    I didn't see a quick link to what improvements are in xserver 1.11 and whether I'll actually care if I can't use it.

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    • #3
      Oh man, breaking the ABI over some wasted bytes? Is that really worth it?

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by maleadt View Post
        Oh man, breaking the ABI over some wasted bytes? Is that really worth it?
        I think it's not worth it. In fact it is really stupid to give away so much and benefiting so little from this change.

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        • #5
          "...for those using the proprietary graphics drivers... you may be stuck waiting a couple of months for support."

          Yeah, because all the X development happens behind closed doors, so there's no opportunity to build for the changes until the last second. Oh no, wait, that's a lie. The proprietary driver developers can pick up the code at any time and add a few tests, so that the same blob works on either release. If their code isn't working on day one, it's not the Xorg developer's fault, it's the fault of Nvidia and AMD.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by maleadt View Post
            Oh man, breaking the ABI over some wasted bytes? Is that really worth it?
            Note that's the first commit that changes ABI from xserver-1.10, but it's not the only one, and reverting just it would still leave the ABI incompatible.

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            • #7
              The next Xorg server version breaks the driver ABI, requiring users to wait for updates to proprietary drivers before upgrading the server.

              In other news, the Earth rotated today, creating a wave of darkness that required most of the planet's population to cease major work and travel activities for some 8 to 12 hours.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by macemoneta View Post
                "...for those using the proprietary graphics drivers... you may be stuck waiting a couple of months for support."

                Yeah, because all the X development happens behind closed doors, so there's no opportunity to build for the changes until the last second. Oh no, wait, that's a lie. The proprietary driver developers can pick up the code at any time and add a few tests, so that the same blob works on either release. If their code isn't working on day one, it's not the Xorg developer's fault, it's the fault of Nvidia and AMD.
                Who said it's the fault of Xorg devs?


                I think the Catalyst devs have better things to do than making their drivers work with the latest Xorg 1.11 code, such as making it work properly with the current Xorg.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by phoronix View Post
                  In fact, it's usually not until the next Ubuntu Linux release with the new xorg-server that AMD puts out a supportive driver of that kernel / xorg-server.
                  Since Microsoft has forbidden AMD to release Linux drivers sooner than Windows ones, that's to be expected. If AMD had some balls, this wouldn't be happening.

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                  • #10
                    Just update the freaking driver code and recompile, AMD and nVidia....

                    Wayland is compatible with nothing at this time and if X.org can't even change such a minor problem than you can bet your X.org ass that Canonical is going to ship Wayland a lot sooner (they said they'd ditch the proprietary drivers whenever FLOSS becomes useful enough for them).

                    And you know what time it is when Ubuntu starts changing...

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by V!NCENT View Post
                      Just update the freaking driver code and recompile, AMD and nVidia....
                      nvidia does this. You can often run their driver with the ignoreabi and it works. Obviously you have to wait for them to release a driver after the change is made so it's not like it works on day one, but it's not the endless wait you're implying.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by V!NCENT View Post
                        Just update the freaking driver code and recompile, AMD and nVidia....

                        Wayland is compatible with nothing at this time and if X.org can't even change such a minor problem than you can bet your X.org ass that Canonical is going to ship Wayland a lot sooner (they said they'd ditch the proprietary drivers whenever FLOSS becomes useful enough for them).

                        And you know what time it is when Ubuntu starts changing...
                        It's not a Just.

                        There are at least two angles worth examining here..

                        o Many versions - The drivers interact with a number of different ABIs, and of those ABIs there are historical versions as well. When an ABI changes, then the glue that handles the ABI needs to change and be made compatible whilst maintaining compatibility with the older versions. I assume that Just compiling against the new ABI and breaking previous versions of X isn't acceptable either.

                        o Development Pipeline Commercial development pipelines by default have a depth of active projects at any given time. Sometimes you can inject a new project part way though a cycle if the return is high, the risk of the change is low and the effort is small. If you begin to fail against any of those criteria, you begin to move further back up the pipeline.

                        Just is usually a facade over a number of complex issues.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Phoronix
                          "While the open-source drivers are quick to adopt to major version changes of the X Server,"
                          ...the proprietary drivers are quick to use all card features and sqeeze all performance.

                          So, whats gonna be? Better version or better performance?

                          this literally sucks...

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by crazycheese View Post
                            ...the proprietary drivers are quick to use all card features and sqeeze all performance.

                            So, whats gonna be? Better version or better performance?

                            this literally sucks...
                            Well at most i wait a week for nvidia to release. Most of the time i can simply use ignoreabi and it works anyways.

                            Now I've avoided AMD/ATI since... PCI mach64s were the new hawtness, but it hasn't seemed to get any better on that side of the fence. I'd love to use the opensource drivers, but they still don't work well enough for WoW under WINE.

                            Also most linux uses will be rather unaffected by this unless they go out of their way to install the new xserver, as most distros will wait to push 1.11 until the closed ones catch up, or the next release cycle.

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                            • #15
                              Why Radeon driver is never affected by this?

                              I mean, unlike Catalyst, R600g Radeon driver on my Radeon HD 4550 always works. Moved to it with the release of Mesa 7.10, dumping Catalyst completely and now using Mesa 7.11-devel which has S3TC texture compression support. Can run Doom 3 in Wine at a playable framerate, Compiz, KWin effects works flawlessly.

                              In my opinion, Radeon driver is better than Catalyst in terms of stability and support for new X server and kernels. No glitches with Firefox in hardware-accelerated mode, Gnome 3 works very well with it. The only drawback is performance.

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