1. Computers
  2. Display Drivers
  3. Graphics Cards
  4. Memory
  5. Motherboards
  6. Processors
  7. Software
  8. Storage
  9. Operating Systems


Facebook RSS Twitter Twitter Google Plus


Phoronix Test Suite

OpenBenchmarking.org

AMD Catalyst 8.6 Linux Driver

Michael Larabel

Published on 18 June 2008
Written by Michael Larabel
Page 1 of 1 - 157 Comments

In AMD's usual fashion, this afternoon they have announced the release of new display drivers for both Linux and Windows. The Catalyst 8.6 release for Linux introduces a few bug fixes, version 2.0 of their driver installation API, and a few unannounced features are present. As always, we have the run-down for you on this month's changes.

Starting with the fixes for Catalyst 8.6 / fglrx 8.50 there are just a couple. The Linux fixes address corruption issues with full-screen OpenGL games, the system no longer hanging when logging-out with AIGLX enabled, a partially black screen after switching monitors on the RS780 / Radeon HD 3200, corruption in second server generation with some ASICs, X server crash while launching the AMD Catalyst Control Center on RHEL-4 x86_64 with a Radeon R520GL, and lastly is vsync not working properly in OpenGL. The Linux release notes mention a total of 21 issues resolved.

As is the case almost every month, the distribution packaging scripts for ATI's driver build / installation process have been updated. This month, however, Catalyst 8.6 brings their second-generation API for this installer. Version 2 of this driver package builder contains a number of enhancements, which will benefit both the package maintainers and end-users. Packaging script maintainers can now utilize an option for automating the installation process. On supported distributions, the user can simply run driver-title.run --buildandinstallpkg and it will not only build the driver package(s) but will proceed to install them using your distribution's package management system.

With version 2 of this API, end-users can now just call --buildpkg (or --buildandinstallpkg) without having to supply the distribution name/release and Catalyst suite will automatically attempt to determine this info. The main distribution to already have updated packaging scripts that comply with this new API is Ubuntu. Over the coming months, more of these packaging scripts should be updated as well.

That covers the official changes within Catalyst 8.6; however, that's not the exhaustive change-log. This driver is about 3MB larger than Catalyst 8.5 as it introduces some new yet-to-be-announced modules and other work. One of these is amdxmm. In addition, with X-Video there are now four available video formats available, and two of those are UYVY and YUV2. The YUV2 is great for those using MythTV and TVTime. There's also other work underway with the ATI/AMD Linux driver and we will talk about that on another day.

Unlike some of the other Catalyst earlier releases this year, Catalyst 8.6 is a rather interesting beast. It includes version 2.0 of their new packaging/driver installation API, a few bug fixes, and other important work. To the dismay of some users, Catalyst 8.6 for Linux doesn't support the Linux 2.6.26 kernel or X.Org 7.4 (X Server 1.5).

About The Author
Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the web-site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience and being the largest web-site devoted to Linux hardware reviews, particularly for products relevant to Linux gamers and enthusiasts but also commonly reviewing servers/workstations and embedded Linux devices. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics hardware drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated testing software. He can be followed via and or contacted via .
Latest Linux Hardware Reviews
  1. CompuLab Intense-PC2: An Excellent, Fanless, Mini PC Powered By Intel's i7 Haswell
  2. From The Atom 330 To Haswell ULT: Intel Linux Performance Benchmarks
  3. AMD Radeon R9 285 Tonga Performance On Linux
  4. Apotop Wi-Copy
Latest Linux Articles
  1. AMD Moves Forward With Unified Linux Driver Strategy, New Kernel Driver
  2. MSI: Update Your BIOS From The Linux Desktop
  3. NVIDIA vs. AMD 2D Linux Drivers: Catalyst Is Getting Quite Good At 2D
  4. 15-Way GPU Comparison With Mesa 10.3 + Linux 3.17
Latest Linux News
  1. Ubuntu 15.04 Is Codenamed After A Monkey: Vivid Vervet
  2. Following GCC, Clang Looks To Default To C11
  3. Users/Developers Threatening Fork Of Debian GNU/Linux
  4. Linux 3.18-rc1 Released One Week Early With Many Changes
  5. The VC4 Gallium3D Driver Is Still Moving Along For The Raspberry Pi
  6. Direct3D 9 Support Might Land Within Mainline Mesa 3D Drivers
  7. OpenGL Preview Benchmarks For NVIDIA's GeForce GTX 970
  8. HOPE: The Ease Of Python With The Speed Of C++
  9. Vitesse: Using LLVM To Speed Up Databases
  10. AMD Is Restructuring Again, Losing 7% Of Employees
Latest Forum Discussions
  1. NVIDIA Presents Its Driver Plans To Support Mir/Wayland & KMS On Linux
  2. AMD Is Restructuring Again, Losing 7% Of Employees
  3. Bye bye BSD, Hello Linux: A Sys Admin's Story
  4. Open-Source AMD Fusion E-350 Support Takes A Dive
  5. Upgrade to Kaveri, very slow VDPAU performance
  6. ChromeOS Drops Support For EXT2/EXT3/EXT4 File-Systems
  7. Lennart Poettering On The Open-Source Community: A Sick Place To Be In
  8. The Slides Announcing The New "AMDGPU" Kernel Driver