ATI's Linux developers have been at the top of their game for some time now, as accompanying the Windows CATALYST display drivers has been the Linux fglrx counterpart. Today, yet again, ATI Technologies strikes its users with their monthly ritual of pushing out new display drivers -- largely to benefit the growing needs of gamers with a multitude of titles, along with a host of fixes and other advancements. The drivers being released today are entitled v6.2 (February 2006) on the Microsoft side of things, while the Linux users are presented with version 8.22.5. Although no CrossFire support has yet been added, nor X1000 series support, penguin users will be pleased to see that v8.22.5 has finally been patched for use with the Linux 2.6.15 kernel (the latest stable kernel tree at the time of publishing is 2.6.16-rc2-git6). In addition to this stock kernel support that enthusiasts have been seeking, there is a fix in place that prevents multiple mode lines from crashing the system as well as the addition of a couple historically missing IDs. Before this February release, the X.Org server would crash if there were more than 22 mode lines specified in the configuration file. The missing ID is with ATI's Radeon 9600 chips. Although this v8.22.5 release is not as significant as some previous versions, or as prominent as some Linux drivers planned for the indubitable future, it does manage to pack in more changes than we had seen with the earlier v8.21.7 candidate. If you will recall, the v8.21.7 Linux display drivers had simply appended official OpenGL 2.0 support and a reduction in size for the downloadable package with graphical installer. Although v8.22.5 isn't anything remarkable or record breaking, an ATI representative has told Phoronix that the drivers do set the stage for other items that will be implemented, and they are indeed visible changes. Barely any package squeezing had occurred with this release, unlike the last release when ATI had noted to Phoronix that further size reduction would eventually occur, the new v8.22.5 (x86_64) display drivers now weigh in at 27.0MB compared against the previous 26.9MB. Known issues with this release is certain 3D applications not initializing properly when some Linux distributions with updated non-stock X.Org v6.8.2 components are installed, TV display corrupting after switching resolutions, and running two X.Org servers simultaneously will result in the system failing to respond.
Release Date: February 09, 2006
Size: 35.3MB (i386) / 27.0MB (x86_64)
· Added 2.6.15 Kernel support
· X server crashes if there are more than 22 mode lines specified in the configuration file
· Added missing Radeon 9600 chip ID