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

Clock-For-Clock, Nouveau Can Compete With NVIDIA's Driver

Michael Larabel

Published on 6 November 2012
Written by Michael Larabel
Page 1 of 5 - 27 Comments

Similar to last week's testing of comparing the open-source vs. closed-source Radeon Linux driver performance from a stock Ubuntu 12.10 installation, the tables have now been turned to look at NVIDIA hardware on this latest Ubuntu Linux release. Benchmarks were done of the stock Nouveau open-source graphics driver, the official NVIDIA proprietary driver, and the proprietary driver when it was underclocked to match the clock frequencies as used by the reverse-engineered Nouveau driver.

This round of benchmarks is comparing the "out of the box" Nouveau driver performance to that of using the NVIDIA driver in Ubuntu 12.10, as obtained via the "nvidia-current" package in the Ubuntu Quantal archive.

Right now, the Nouveau driver does not handle any dynamic re-clocking automatically and even the manually configured static re-clocking can be hit-or-miss depending upon the specific GPU being used. The Nouveau driver is simply running the graphics core, shader clock, and memory clock at whatever the default speeds were for the hardware at boot time when the driver was initialized. With most modern GPUs, these boot speeds are much lower than their rated clock speeds -- for say an older GeForce 9500GT it has a 400MHz core and memory clock by default while it's supposed to run at a 550MHz core clock. For newer GPUs like the higher-end GeForce GTX 460, the rated clock speeds are 675/1800MHz while the boot clock speeds -- and what's used by Nouveau right now -- is 50/135MHz. Experienced Linux users can manually re-clock the graphics card with Nouveau, but it's not as trivial as adjusting a xorg.conf option but requires special kernel module parameters and writing a sysfs interface, as outlined in the aforelinked article. For many GPUs though, when attempting to re-clock the GPU it fails with either stability issues, rendering corruption, or other problems. With the Linux 3.8 kernel there might be better re-clocking, but that has yet to be seen.

<< Previous Page
1
Latest Linux Hardware Reviews
  1. ASUS AM1I-A: A Mini-ITX Board For Socketed Kabini APUs
  2. Mini-Box M350: A Simple, Affordable Mini-ITX Case
  3. Overclocking The AMD AM1 Athlon & Sempron APUs
  4. AMD Athlon 5350 / 5150 & Sempron 3850 / 2650
Latest Linux Articles
  1. Ubuntu 12.04.4 vs. 13.10 vs. 14.04 LTS Desktop Benchmarks
  2. AMD OpenCL Performance With AM1 Kabini APUs
  3. A Quick Look At GCC 4.9 vs. LLVM Clang 3.5
  4. Are AMD Athlon/Sempron APUs Fast Enough For Steam On Linux?
Latest Linux News
  1. FreeBSD Advances For ARM, Bhyve, Clang
  2. Ubuntu 14.04 LTS "Trusty Tahr" Officially Released
  3. Ubuntu 12.04 LTS vs. 14.04 LTS Server Benchmarks
  4. QEMU 2.0 Released With ARM, x86 Enhancements
  5. Running The Unity 8 Preview Session On Ubuntu 14.04 LTS
  6. R600 Gallium3D Disables LLVM Back-End By Default
  7. Fedora 21 Gets GNOME 3.12, PHP 5.6, Mono 3.4
  8. Fedora Workstation Is Making Me Quite Excited
  9. Maynard: A Lightweight Wayland Desktop
  10. Chromium Browser Going Through Growing Pains In Ubuntu 14.04
  11. KDE 4.13 Is Being Released Today With New Features
  12. Trying Out Radeon R9 290 Graphics On Open-Source
Latest Forum Discussions
  1. The GNOME Foundation Is Running Short On Money
  2. Updated and Optimized Ubuntu Free Graphics Drivers
  3. Radeon 8000M problematic on Linux?
  4. After Jack Keane, RuseSoft will briing Ankh 3 to Linux through Desura
  5. Suspected PHP Proxy Issue
  6. Linux Kernel Developers Fed Up With Ridiculous Bugs In Systemd
  7. Change installation destination from home directory
  8. Bye bye BSD, Hello Linux: A Sys Admin's Story