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

NVIDIA's Linux Driver On Ubuntu Is Very Competitive With Windows 8

Michael Larabel

Published on 30 July 2013
Written by Michael Larabel
Page 1 of 7 - 50 Comments

In recent days on Phoronix I have published benchmarks showing Windows 8 beating Ubuntu Linux for Intel Haswell performance and the Radeon Gallium3D driver losing to AMD Catalyst Legacy on Windows. As some good news for NVIDIA Linux users, the performance on Ubuntu Linux can beat out Microsoft Windows 8 on modern GPUs. However, the strong Linux performance can only be found if using the closed-source NVIDIA driver and not the open-source Nouveau alternative.

In years past on Phoronix when delivering Windows vs. Linux benchmarks with NVIDIA graphics, the performance has generally been comparable with the performance being more or less the same. With Windows 8 and the latest Linux stack, it's still largely this way but there are some nice performance wins too. However, if using the Nouveau driver, it remains a rather dire situation.

The open-source Nouveau driver developed through reverse-engineering still only supports OpenGL 3.1 rather than OpenGL 4.3 found with the latest NVIDIA Linux driver, the performance is largely behind, and as part of that the performance is horrible because most NVIDIA GPUs can't properly re-clock so that the Nouveau DRM driver can increase the core/memory/shader clocks to their designated frequencies and voltages. The Nouveau driver also has other shortcomings like needing to use external binary firmware for the video decode engine (VDPAU) support, some stability issues, and other problems depending upon the GPU.

While the Nouveau driver leaves a lot to be desired, it's the default NVIDIA graphics driver on Ubuntu Linux and other distributions due to its open-source status. Meanwhile, the proprietary NVIDIA Linux graphics driver is full-featured with performance spot on to their very well tuned Windows driver. The NVIDIA binary Linux driver shares mostly common code with the Windows driver (and Solaris/BSD).

On our Intel Core i7 4770K "Haswell" test bed, the NVIDIA GeForce 9800GTX, GeForce GTX 460, and GeForce GTX 680 graphics cards were tested. The 9800GTX was used as a graphics processor with very mature support while having a Fermi (GTX 460) and Kepler (GTX 680) graphics cards is interesting for a modern look. The Nouveau driver has no support for Fermi/Kepler re-clocking support yet and when attempting to re-clock the 9800GTX on the Linux 3.11 kernel there were artifacts and stability problems under stress.

<< Previous Page
1
Latest Linux Hardware Reviews
  1. Scythe Mugen MAX
  2. Intel Core i7 5960X Haswell-E On Linux
  3. Intel 80GB 530 Series M.2 SSD On Linux
  4. With A New Motherboard, The Core i7 5960X Haswell-E Lights Up
Latest Linux Articles
  1. RadeonSI GLAMOR Benchmarks With X.Org Server 1.16
  2. RadeonSI Gallium3D vs. Catalyst At 4K UHD On Linux
  3. MSAA RadeonSI Gallium3D Performance Preview
  4. Intel Core i7 5960X CPU Core Scaling Under Linux
Latest Linux News
  1. Ubuntu Touch/Phone Reaches Its First RTM Image
  2. The KMS Mode-Setting Driver Was Imported For X.Org Server 1.17
  3. SNA & UXA Intel Benchmarks With X.Org Server 1.16
  4. Graphics Driver Changes Coming In The Linux 3.18 Kernel
  5. Tropico 5 Being Released For Linux Gamers This Week
  6. Eclipse IDE Starts Firing Up On Wayland's Weston
  7. OpenSUSE Announcement On SUSE's Recent Merger
  8. Valve Begins Publicly Tracking AMD Catalyst Linux Issues
  9. Digia Qt Spinoff Is Called "The Qt Company"
  10. GNOME 3.14 Makes More Progress In Running Natively On Wayland
Latest Forum Discussions
  1. New Group Calls For Boycotting Systemd
  2. Updated and Optimized Ubuntu Free Graphics Drivers
  3. Stop grabbing my keyboard :(
  4. Best Radeon for a Power Mac G5?
  5. New stress testing utility for GPU's
  6. Hd 6850
  7. support for first generation UVD blocks (RV6xx, RS780, RS880 and RV790)
  8. Nvidia joins the ranks of Apple and Microsoft