To no surprise at all, the AMD FirePro V5900 worked just fine with the latest AMD Catalyst Linux driver. The Linux / Windows drivers that AMD had supplied to the media in advance of the FirePro V5900 / V7900 launch were based upon the fglrx 8.83 release stream, which is what made up the Catalyst 11.3 build. For our purposes we used the fglrx 8.84 / Catalyst 11.4 Linux driver release, which is the version that's packaged up and available from the Ubuntu 11.04 repositories and offers the Linux 2.6.38 / X.Org Server 1.10 series support. The full Linux fglrx driver string was fglrx 8.84.60, which had worked fine with both the V5900 and V7900 hardware.
This initial FirePro V5900 Linux benchmarking take place from an Intel Sandy Bridge system with a Core i5 2500K quad-core, Sapphire Pure Black P67 Hydra motherboard, 4GB of system memory, and 250GB Seagate SATA HDD. Ubuntu 11.04 x86_64 was the base operating system with the Linux 2.6.38 kernel, Unity 3.8.10 desktop, X.Org Server 1.10.1 desktop, GCC 4.5.2, fglrx 8.84.60 display driver, and an EXT4 file-system.
For looking at the performance of the FirePro V5900 we compared its performance to the FirePro V3800, V4800, V5800, and V7800 workstation graphics cards when they were re-tested under the same hardware/software configuration. The Phoronix Test Suite was, of course, deployed to facilitate this testing with SPECViewPerf 10.0 as the primary Linux-native workstation OpenGL benchmark along with some other test profiles for reference.