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Thread: Why I Love AMD and Why You Need To Stop Whining

  1. #1
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    Default Why I Love AMD and Why You Need To Stop Whining

    I have had a lot of experience with AMD products. I go back to the ATi Radeon X300 SE, which if my memory serves me right was one of the first PCI Express x16 GPUs. I have had a lot of experience with Linux as well, starting a year or two after the X300 SE. More recently, I have had experience with OpenGL programming. The current systems I have with AMD products are:

    Dell Dimension 8400 (with the mentioned ATi Radeon X300 SE)
    HP Pavilion dv6-6135dx (AMD A8-3500M APU which contains AMD Radeon HD 6620G GPU and also has a dedicated AMD Radeon HD 6750M GPU for Switchable and/or Dual Graphics)
    HP Envy m6-1205dx (AMD A10-4600M APU which contains AMD Radeon HD 7660G GPU)

    and I have had a few other AMD laptops. I have helped pick out for others or purchase for myself a total of 6 all-AMD laptops since October 2009 and I haven't had an issue with them nor have the ones I helped pick out.

    The main reason I go with AMD is the price to performance ratio, or "bang for your buck." For example, I picked up that HP Pavilion dv6-6135dx for $699, and that was bought the day it was released. To get an Intel system with comparable performance at that time, I would've had to spend at least double that amount. The system is also completely overclockable (CPU and both GPUs if you know what you're doing), even on Linux with a bit of programming and Linux kernel knowledge (it can't be overclocked via BIOS settings, it is overclocked via software). I'm able to run new release games with 90% of the bells and whistles turned on and have a playable framerate (40+ FPS).

    Now, I'll get into OpenGL and driver stuff. This is the stuff I see a lot of people complaining about around here.

    General Driver Complaints:
    - Doesn't support new X or Linux Kernel releases:
    If your Linux distro is using a new X or Linux Kernel release it is their responsibility to patch the driver to function on them properly. AMD doesn't rush officially supporting these newer releases because they take the time to ensure that there is no drop in driver performance or compatibility or other issues brought up by these new releases. They want to make sure the product they are putting their name on doesn't have those issues. I myself use Kubuntu 13.04 for Linux, and I use the xorg-edgers PPA repository which recently has had the fglrx packages updated quickly after new releases. They have them patched to support the newer Linux kernels and X releases. It works without a hitch on both of my aformentioned AMD laptops.

    - Poor 2D performance:
    This has been 100% resolved since the 12.6 release of the drivers.

    - I HAVE _issue_ AND IT ISN'T FIXED:
    Have you filed a bug report, including proper stack traces? Without doing this, there is no way for AMD to fix the issue.

    - _application_ WORKS WITH NVIDIA BUT NOT AMD:
    Nvidia's implementation of OpenGL is not to proper specifications. Application developers using Nvidia can end up having issues with AMD users because AMD properly implements OpenGL to the actual specifications, so the developer is using this non-standard OpenGL and expecting it to work everywhere. Complain to your developer and/or Nvidia. In my experience with OpenGL programming, I've ran into issues with Nvidia users because their OpenGL implementation doesn't behave properly! I'm forced to then check if a user is using an Nvidia GPU, and if so, having to use hackish workarounds or even disabling certain features for them. I have to do this for Intel as well, but not as often as I have had to in the past. Intel has definitely come a long way with GPUs recently and I applaud their efforts. Competition is good for everybody.

    Specific Driver Complaints:
    - Cannot resume from sleep:
    I have issues resuming from sleep when using the open-source radeon driver. When I install fglrx these issues go away. This has been reproduced on at least 3 AMD systems I've worked with so I have a hard time believing the people mention this are really being truthful or actually using fglrx.


    If you have other issues you'd like to bring up, I'll offer a rebuttal. This is only what I can think of at the time, I just can't stand to read another thread page full of trolling AMD on this forum. Even the articles themselves are biased here!

  2. #2
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    I wanted to ask you about your experience with A8 and video drivers, but I read you use catalyst.., so I have no questions then.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by MWisBest View Post
    Specific Driver Complaints:
    - Cannot resume from sleep:
    I have issues resuming from sleep when using the open-source radeon driver. When I install fglrx these issues go away. This has been reproduced on at least 3 AMD systems I've worked with so I have a hard time believing the people mention this are really being truthful or actually using fglrx.
    I had the opposite on an Acer 7741G with a HD 6550M. Resume would mostly not work with fglrx in the default configuration, would often work with fglrx when booted with the nopat kernel parameter and would always work with the open source driver.

    If you have a hard time believing it, then have a look at the bugtracker you recommend:

    http://ati.cchtml.com/show_bug.cgi?id=566
    http://ati.cchtml.com/show_bug.cgi?id=112
    http://ati.cchtml.com/show_bug.cgi?id=699
    http://ati.cchtml.com/show_bug.cgi?id=610
    http://ati.cchtml.com/show_bug.cgi?id=457
    http://ati.cchtml.com/show_bug.cgi?id=449
    etc., there are many more.

    Mine was some time ago and I don't have the notebook anymore so maybe it got fixed in the meantime.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by MWisBest View Post
    General Driver Complaints:
    - Doesn't support new X or Linux Kernel releases:
    If your Linux distro is using a new X or Linux Kernel release it is their responsibility to patch the driver to function on them properly.
    Nonsense. It is AMD's duty to release drivers that actually work and not to rely on patches from third parties.

    AMD doesn't rush officially supporting these newer releases because they take the time to ensure that there is no drop in driver performance or compatibility or other issues brought up by these new releases.
    So you are telling me that they have not released a driver that supports anything newer than a 9 months old kernel (I don't count 3.5 here, since it is already EOL) because they don't rush things? You must be kidding.

    They want to make sure the product they are putting their name on doesn't have those issues
    So they let their image better being based on patches made by third parties they have no control over? That doesn't sound right to me.

    It works without a hitch on both of my aformentioned AMD laptops.
    So you can tell us about the quality of their drivers shortly after you have installed them, but AMD is not able to do that in a reasonable timeframe? What does that tell us about AMD?

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by MWisBest View Post
    If your Linux distro is using a new X or Linux Kernel release it is their responsibility to patch the driver to function on them properly.
    You are aware that the ATI Catalyst driver is closed source, and hence it is impossible for a distro to patch it?

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by chrisb View Post
    You are aware that the ATI Catalyst driver is closed source, and hence it is impossible for a distro to patch it?
    It's "mostly closed source"... part of the Catalyst package is an open source "Kernel Compatibility Layer" (KCL) which sits between the kernel graphics driver and the Linux kernel. During installation the KCL is built against the Linux kernel headers and the resulting object file is linked with the closed source parts of the kernel driver to make the fglrx kernel module. When people talk about "patching" that usually means modifying the KCL source code.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by bridgman View Post
    It's "mostly closed source"... part of the Catalyst package is an open source "Kernel Compatibility Layer" (KCL) which sits between the kernel graphics driver and the Linux kernel. During installation the KCL is built against the Linux kernel headers and the resulting object file is linked with the closed source parts of the kernel driver to make the fglrx kernel module. When people talk about "patching" that usually means modifying the KCL source code.
    And AMD will be more than happy to incorporate those patches into KCL, will provide documentation about requirements for KCL?
    Right now it look like its periodic task performed by one-man-army, executed only for older kernels that are targeted (== those included in Ubu and SuSE and RHEL).

    Not to meantion that if bug is present in fglrx code...

    Nah, distros should care more about supporting and resolving any problems with FLOS AMD drivers.


    Offtopic:

    Will AMD consider recommending FLOS drivers over Catalyst legacy, for older hardware? Are FLOS drivers ready for it? Do you see it as acheavable target in 2-3y time?

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by MWisBest View Post
    - I HAVE _issue_ AND IT ISN'T FIXED:
    Have you filed a bug report, including proper stack traces? Without doing this, there is no way for AMD to fix the issue.
    Since three years I am reporting that the default sizes for the desktops are too small, e.g. not possible to use two 24" screens at the same time. Needs manual xorg.conf modifcations. 2013 and manual xorg.conf modifications....
    Using HDMI and DVI forces both screens to the same resolution. Bad.

    Specific Driver Complaints:
    Bought a XFX Radeon 7970 for my gaming rig. Installed Ubuntu 13.04 and fglrx. Getting "Unsupported Hardware"-overlay. Yeah, great. That card is on the market since years...

  9. #9
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    TL;DR.
    Why are you loving a corporation in the first place?

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by brosis View Post
    I wanted to ask you about your experience with A8 and video drivers, but I read you use catalyst.., so I have no questions then.
    I typically use the open-source drivers until I start getting into stuff using extensive OpenGL, and I used the open-source drivers on the A8 for about a month. It's decent for everyday tasks, but just doesn't hold up with the 3D stuff.


    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisXY View Post
    I had the opposite on an Acer 7741G with a HD 6550M. Resume would mostly not work with fglrx in the default configuration, would often work with fglrx when booted with the nopat kernel parameter and would always work with the open source driver.

    If you have a hard time believing it, then have a look at the bugtracker you recommend:

    http://ati.cchtml.com/show_bug.cgi?id=566
    http://ati.cchtml.com/show_bug.cgi?id=112
    http://ati.cchtml.com/show_bug.cgi?id=699
    http://ati.cchtml.com/show_bug.cgi?id=610
    http://ati.cchtml.com/show_bug.cgi?id=457
    http://ati.cchtml.com/show_bug.cgi?id=449
    etc., there are many more.

    Mine was some time ago and I don't have the notebook anymore so maybe it got fixed in the meantime.
    One of the reports you linked to reports the problem being fixed in Catalyst 12.9, and only one of the reports linked to includes at least some of the information developers need to fix an issue.


    Quote Originally Posted by Vim_User View Post
    Nonsense. It is AMD's duty to release drivers that actually work and not to rely on patches from third parties.

    So you are telling me that they have not released a driver that supports anything newer than a 9 months old kernel (I don't count 3.5 here, since it is already EOL) because they don't rush things? You must be kidding.

    So they let their image better being based on patches made by third parties they have no control over? That doesn't sound right to me.

    So you can tell us about the quality of their drivers shortly after you have installed them, but AMD is not able to do that in a reasonable timeframe? What does that tell us about AMD?
    Nonsense. From what I can tell the distros they list as officially being supported are supported in the official driver. If those distros want to support newer kernels in an in-development release (e.x. Ubuntu 13.04) that's their responsibility.

    3 months. It works fine with 3.6. There's no reason not to count an EOL kernel. In that case I'll count 3.4.34, released just yesterday. 1 day.

    Please rewrite this sentence, I only speak English.

    You said "shortly after you have installed them," indicating that you did not really read my whole post. Read the entire post and get back to me.


    Quote Originally Posted by Asariati View Post
    Since three years I am reporting that the default sizes for the desktops are too small, e.g. not possible to use two 24" screens at the same time. Needs manual xorg.conf modifcations. 2013 and manual xorg.conf modifications....
    Using HDMI and DVI forces both screens to the same resolution. Bad.


    Bought a XFX Radeon 7970 for my gaming rig. Installed Ubuntu 13.04 and fglrx. Getting "Unsupported Hardware"-overlay. Yeah, great. That card is on the market since years...
    Link me to bug reports with the information needed for developers to fix such an issue.

    Years? The Southern Islands GPUs were released around Christmas of 2011 if memory serves me right, so it hasn't been multiple years. If you installed fglrx from the official repositories, it was potentially outdated, and this would be the source of your issue.


    Quote Originally Posted by asdfblah View Post
    TL;DR.
    Why are you loving a corporation in the first place?
    Get out troll.

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