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  • #41
    Originally posted by bridgman View Post
    A big part of the spec-writing job is sifting through literally thousands of pages of hardware design documentation, picking out the portions which are relevant to driver developers, and distilling that down to something we can actually release to the public.
    And after this work, fglrx developers use old thousand-page mess or new specs, distilled specifically for driver developers? Would it make sense to make such spec right away for fglrx devs and then just remove chapters about drm/3rdparty IP stuff for public release?
    Last edited by ssmaxss; 06-07-2009, 11:49 AM.

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    • #42
      Originally posted by ssmaxss View Post
      And after this work, fglrx developers use old thousand-page mess or new specs, distilled specifically for driver developers? Would it make sense to make such spec right away for fglrx devs and then just remove chapters about drm/3rdparty IP stuff for public release?
      Most of the code in the proprietary driver is designed long before the chip is launched, working directly with the hardware designers so that issues raised by the driver devs can feed back into the hardware design.

      The new docs rarely have anything the driver developers didn't already know -- in fact we normally go to the driver developers for clarification when writing the docs.
      Last edited by bridgman; 06-07-2009, 12:01 PM.

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      • #43
        Yes, the question was about next chips (something like r8xx or even r9xx), is it going to be similar gap before oss spec release?
        Last edited by ssmaxss; 06-07-2009, 11:58 AM.

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        • #44
          The gap should be shorter on future chips; we have already started work on public docs for the next generation of GPUs.

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          • #45
            Originally posted by bridgman View Post
            third party IP
            Thanks a lot for the explanations.
            Well I thought that would be the case in drivers. Didn't really expect this to be so much in the pure HW.

            >DRM
            Argh! Yeah. HDCP, Macrovision and so on. Yes, I remember. Still some day someone will have to write some kind of libdvd... I mean libblueraycss or something. Can't go on for long that I can't watch my paid for stuff where and whenever I want. (Until now I purely own DVDs, exactly because of that issue).

            I guess Macrovision or so would sue you if you gave out any specs. But security by obscurity won't last too long.

            >patent litigation
            Don't we all love Sisvel & Co? The produce nothing, they made nothing woth of but have the patents and sue the hell out of everyone. Hopefully that will change in the future.

            >takes a lot of time from our most senior technical people
            Yeah. Like science. More time running around collecting money for research insted of doing research/development itself. Sad thing.

            >and distilling that down to something we can actually release
            >to the public.
            I see. Well, of course prolly nobody would need or want to read these thousands of pages again and try to do some driver development on possibly redundant specs.

            On the first point of competitive issues tough... well I understand that Nvidia and ATI would have to lose something to the competitor but S3, XGI,...? Their chips are probably quite inferior, so what do they fear in that point?

            Anyway I think it's a grand step by ATI-AMD to have given specs and continuing to do so. And that is the reason why I switched from my AMD/Nvidia combination(s) to AMD/ATI (also with ATI chipsets onboard) and tell everybody who's asking me for advice how great these ATI chips are.
            And thanks again for the insights.

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            • #46
              Originally posted by Ant P. View Post
              Is it a hardware manufacturer's fault that their laptops use parts that don't work correctly in the OS they preinstall on them? Or is it the fault of the Invisible Marketshare Unicorn?
              PLZ re-read my comment (RIF). I said that most users will try to install 3rd party hardware or software and a great deal of this does not work under Linux w/o a good struggle. If Asus failed to have support for their full nettop - shame on them. If some user plugs his Xyzzy brand USB TV tumer or some advanced webcam into the nettop and it fails - that is a Linux shortcoming.

              You're "unicorn" sarcasm is ridiculous and ignores business reality. Do you expect a steakhouse to make a vegan meal to satisfy an extra 0.02% of their potential market too ? Get a clue - these decisions are based on real world estimates of cost/benefit.

              Linux has exactly the same marketing problem as every "me too" product ever introduced. We have a viable replacement for the leading desktop brand, and now we need to find a "compelling event" for people to overcome the costly hurdle and switch from Win to Lin. If JoeEnduser buys a new laptop it obviously comes with Windows, it's compatible w/ all the potential hardware, and software for PCs. If he needs a better browser or cheap Office software he can use the same Firefox, T'bird and OpenOffice as we do. What exactly is his motivation to expend a lot of effort to change and learn new things that are peripheral to his main task ? Since he already paid for Win license with the laptop, the "we're cheaper" argument has no legs. "We're incompatible with 94% of systems" is a negative. "We don't support most hardware out of the box" is another negative.

              Personally I hate the MS monopolisitc policies and the what they've attempted to avoid modify and destroy standard repeatedly. OTOH most sheeple absolutely don't care.


              ---
              It would be nice if mfgrs would release full hardware documentation, but still someone has to write a Linux driver and that takes time and real effort. After all these years look at the ridiculous state of vid drivers, for ATI & Nvidea on Linux - this despite the fact that nearly every system uses one.

              It is not an obligation of any company or person to release full design documentation. If you don't like a vendors policy you are free to negotiate, find another vendor, or start your own company. The fact is that the 94% of Windows PC users don't need or want this design info. Apple uses a mostly closed hardware solutions so the 5% of Mac PC users don't need this either. It's only the 1% of Linux/BSD users who want this, and I can't greatly blame the vendors for ignoring us.


              I've complained to ATI & AMD/Nvidea and also Tax-Prep software vendors others about their policies. If YOU haven't then YOU are part of the problem. Make your voice heard. Whining that companies should do something special for our benefit is a dead-end victimhood attitude.

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              • #47
                The motherboard wars are boiling down to 2 people. Asus and Gigabyte. Always sort of ends up that way.

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                • #48
                  Asus sells about 5 times as many mobos as Gigabyte. Big difference in company size too.

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                  • #49
                    Originally posted by stevea View Post
                    PLZ re-read my comment (RIF). I said that most users will try to install 3rd party hardware or software and a great deal of this does not work under Linux w/o a good struggle. If Asus failed to have support for their full nettop - shame on them. If some user plugs his Xyzzy brand USB TV tumer or some advanced webcam into the nettop and it fails - that is a Linux shortcoming.

                    You're "unicorn" sarcasm is ridiculous and ignores business reality. Do you expect a steakhouse to make a vegan meal to satisfy an extra 0.02% of their potential market too ? Get a clue - these decisions are based on real world estimates of cost/benefit.

                    Linux has exactly the same marketing problem as every "me too" product ever introduced. We have a viable replacement for the leading desktop brand, and now we need to find a "compelling event" for people to overcome the costly hurdle and switch from Win to Lin. If JoeEnduser buys a new laptop it obviously comes with Windows, it's compatible w/ all the potential hardware, and software for PCs. If he needs a better browser or cheap Office software he can use the same Firefox, T'bird and OpenOffice as we do. What exactly is his motivation to expend a lot of effort to change and learn new things that are peripheral to his main task ? Since he already paid for Win license with the laptop, the "we're cheaper" argument has no legs. "We're incompatible with 94% of systems" is a negative. "We don't support most hardware out of the box" is another negative.

                    Personally I hate the MS monopolisitc policies and the what they've attempted to avoid modify and destroy standard repeatedly. OTOH most sheeple absolutely don't care.


                    ---
                    It would be nice if mfgrs would release full hardware documentation, but still someone has to write a Linux driver and that takes time and real effort. After all these years look at the ridiculous state of vid drivers, for ATI & Nvidea on Linux - this despite the fact that nearly every system uses one.

                    It is not an obligation of any company or person to release full design documentation. If you don't like a vendors policy you are free to negotiate, find another vendor, or start your own company. The fact is that the 94% of Windows PC users don't need or want this design info. Apple uses a mostly closed hardware solutions so the 5% of Mac PC users don't need this either. It's only the 1% of Linux/BSD users who want this, and I can't greatly blame the vendors for ignoring us.


                    I've complained to ATI & AMD/Nvidea and also Tax-Prep software vendors others about their policies. If YOU haven't then YOU are part of the problem. Make your voice heard. Whining that companies should do something special for our benefit is a dead-end victimhood attitude.
                    you realize that linux supports more hardware than windows?

                    you realize that MS pressured companies to not sell nettops with linux?

                    you realize that ASUS OEM just lost its contract with Intel?

                    funny times lie ahead.

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                    • #50
                      Originally posted by energyman View Post
                      you realize that linux supports more hardware than windows?

                      you realize that MS pressured companies to not sell nettops with linux?

                      you realize that ASUS OEM just lost its contract with Intel?

                      funny times lie ahead.
                      You realize that aside from a bunch of ancient legacy drivers (anyone seen a baycom x25 modem or a seimens gigaset isdn in the past decade ?) that Linux has driver availability and quality problems ? If you buy a new vid card, TV receiver usb part, any random RAID card, a new laptop w/ some new wifi part, or a bluetooth part there is an excellent chance there is no Linux support, but there will be Win support. A friend just sent me this ....
                      http://lkml.indiana.edu/hypermail/li...7.2/01128.html
                      The upshot is that the most popular GigE enet chip on mobos today the Realtek 8169 driver - has major breakage.

                      Linux driver/hardware support situation is decidedly inferior to Windows for the typical end-user.

                      --

                      If you have evidence that M$ used anything other than lawful market pressure to convert nettop companies you should be talking to the FTC lawyers. Otherwise it's just more cheap-shot speculation, anti big company paranoia and ill-will. I think you have what Linus Torvalds recently referred to, "I may make jokes about Microsoft at times, but at the same time, I think the Microsoft hatred is a disease".

                      --

                      Are you aware that no news source reports any Asus/Intel fallingout ? The idea that Intel would walk away from the company that makes 35% of all mobos and a load of other Intel products is koo-koo. What contract ? Where is the news source ?

                      Beware energyman, funnyfarms may lay ahead for you !

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