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 Benchmarking Platform
Phoromatic Test Orchestration

AMD's New Catalyst Linux Driver Isn't Too Good

Michael Larabel

Published on 22 November 2012
Written by Michael Larabel
Page 1 of 4 - 51 Comments

Last week marked the release of a new AMD Catalyst Linux driver beta that was intended to improve the AMD Radeon OpenGL performance. AMD said this updated closed-source Linux graphics driver would bring "significant performance improvements" for Valve's recently ported Left 4 Dead 2 Linux game. Curious about AMD Linux OpenGL performance improvements elsewhere, I ran some benchmarks of this new driver on several different graphics cards. Unfortunately, the performance improvements aren't too widespread and there's other problems making this beta driver not appealing.

NVIDIA released a new Linux driver that delivered massive performance improvements as part of Valve's Linux play. NVIDIA's performance improvements were not isolated to Valve's Source Engine games but performance improvements were found throughout most Phoronix OpenGL benchmarks. This new NVIDIA Linux driver update (310.xx) was very exciting, which led to hope that the updated AMD Catalyst driver with its advertised "significant performance improvements" would also be great.

While I can't share Source Engine Linux benchmarks at the moment, I went ahead and tested the new Catalyst 12.11 Beta 8 Linux driver with other Linux-native OpenGL workloads from Ubuntu 12.10. On three different AMD Radeon graphics cards I compared the performance of the stock Catalyst driver as packaged currently in the Ubuntu 12.10 repository (fglrx 9.0.2 / OpenGL 4.2.11903) to that of the new Catalyst Linux beta that was released days ago (fglrx 9.1.11 / OpenGL 4.2.11991). The tested graphics cards included the Radeon HD 5770, HD 6570, and HD 7950.

A variety of OpenBenchmarking.org test profiles with the Phoronix Test Suite were run while only swapping out the Catalyst driver and graphics card.

Latest Linux News
  1. Phoronix Test Suite 5.8 Milestone 5 Brings Near Final "Belev" Experience
  2. For AMD Users, Linux 4.2 Will Bring The New AMDGPU Driver & VCE1 For Radeon
  3. Atomic Mode-Setting Still Baking For Samsung's Exynos DRM Driver
  4. Ubuntu Phone Update This Month Brings Many Improvements
  5. Fedora's "Fedup" To Be Replaced In Fedora 23
  6. Android M Should Bring Greater Performance & Efficiency
  7. AMD Teases Upcoming Radeon "Fiji" GPU Launch
  8. Dell Makes An Ubuntu Installation Guide, Suggests Users Try It Out
  9. Running Linux On The Intel Compute Stick
  10. AMD Launches The A10-7870K "Godavari" APU
Latest Articles & Reviews
  1. Opening The Gates To Our Daily Open-Source Linux Benchmark Results
  2. The Latest Features For Linux Performance Management + Benchmark Monitoring
  3. Noctua NH-U12DX i4 + NF-F12
  4. Btrfs RAID 0/1 Benchmarks On The Linux 4.1 Kernel
Most Viewed News This Week
  1. NVIDIA's Proprietary Driver Is Moving Closer With Kernel Mode-Setting
  2. Zapcc Claims To Be A "Much Faster C++ Compiler"
  3. OpenWRT 15.05 Preparing Improved Security & Better Networking
  4. Features Added To Mesa 10.6 For Open-Source GPU Drivers
  5. Ubuntu's LXD vs. KVM For The Linux Cloud
  6. The Latest Linux Kernel Git Code Fixes The EXT4 RAID0 Corruption Problem
  7. Friction Building Around An Ubuntu Community Council Decision
  8. Fedora 22 Is Being Released Next Tuesday