As 2005 comes to an end, both NVIDIA and ATI have both fought a competitive battle not only when it comes to their hardware lineup but also display drivers for alternative operating systems. When discussing this subject matter, GNU/Linux users have been quick to criticize ATI Technologies whether it is due to poor installation support, distribution compatibility, rudimentary control panel, or simply the performance level of its drivers. On the contrary, even though NVIDIA had unveiled its GeForce 7 series, 2005 has not been the best year for the green developers...
A mere seventeen days after the launch of NVIDIA's 1.0-8174 display drivers that finally delivered Scalable Link Interface support to Linux, the green guys have delivered yet another driver for the penguin users on the heels of the holidays. Coincidently, the driver release comes on the same day as the Xorg X11R6.9 and X11R7.0 launch after a decade of no major releases. As the 1.0-8178 version implies, there is not much in the way of significant advances but there is enough to call for a new performance article, which we will be sharing with you today.
Three days after the launch of NVIDIA's 1.0-8174 display drivers, which brought initial SLI Linux support, ATI has come to the table with their monthly CATALYST release (5.12) as well as a fresh release candidate for the Linux fglrx proprietary drivers. What new items are brought to the table with this latest 8.20.8 software package? We shall present our findings today.
Earlier today, the NVIDIA 1.0-8174 Linux display drivers were finally released. Among appending SLI support these Rel80 drivers feature the new nvidia-xconfig utility. With our first performance article for this new driver series, we are seeing just how well the 1.0-8174 drivers fair in combination with a NVIDIA GeForce 7800GTX 256MB.
By now you've probably read numerous NVIDIA SLI guides for constructing a Windows gaming rig but for your viewing pleasure today we have our first Linux SLI primer, as the NVIDIA Rel80 drivers are on the heels of a public launch, which bring fourth initial SLI support. In this guide, we share some basic information for choosing graphics cards, power supplies, and motherboards that are NVIDIA Scalable Link Interface certified. In addition we share a few tidbits about the Linux software setup along with screenshots.
As we celebrate this Thanksgiving Day here in the United States, there is an additional place in our hearts for the talented folks over at XGI Technology. Unlike XGI's earlier attempt at opening up their 2D FBDev source-code to the general public, which hadn't gained much support due to the lack of 3D code, they have begun to take a new position on their software. As many OSS enthusiasts could have only dreamed about, by as early as next month XGI is targeting at possibly releasing their complete source-code for the Volari 8300 to the open-source community. Read more in this Phoronix exclusive.
For those of you waiting to hear solid information about the Linux NVIDIA Rel80 drivers, the wait is finally over. Although not made officially available yet, ASUS had uploaded the NVIDIA 1.0-8168 display drivers. Although we imagine this was made on part due to human error, and has since been taken down from their servers, people are continuing to rage about these drivers on forums as well as distributing these 32-bit and 64-bit versions. Today we have some initial information coming out of Phoronix about the introduction of Linux SLI and other features.
Shipping with ATI's v8.19.10 display drivers is a technology that Linux mobile users have long awaited to enjoy and that is PowerPlay. ATI's PowerPlay is a power management technology that is designed to dramatically reduce the power consumption of ATI MOBILITY RADEON GPUs by adjusting the core and memory clock speeds along with the voltage supplied to the chip. By adjusting the GPU, the laptop battery life and heat-output can often be dramatically improved. Today with us, we have the first Linux preview for this battery-saving technology.
With the release of the ATI Linux v8.19.10 display drivers earlier in the day, we have performed a driver comparison demonstrating ATI's advances over the last couple of driver releases when it comes strictly to their frame-rate performance. The drivers used in this quorum are the v8.16.20, v8.18.6, v8.18.8, and the most recent v8.19.10 release. Not only has this most recent release offered improvements in the packaging support, but there is also a new feature for mobile users, which allows them to run their GPU at different power-stages to save on battery life while adjusting the processing power.
Earlier today, we had spoken with Jeryuan Yan who is the Business Development (BD) manager of XGI Technology. In this interview, we primarily focused on XGI's Linux advances since the last time we spoke several months ago, but we also received some exclusive information in regards to their November 9 hardware product launch in Beijing and the stance of XGI Technology on Multi-GPU Technology similar to NVIDIA Scalable Link Interface and ATI CrossFire. In addition, we received some vital information into some expected driver launches that will finally support the Linux 2.6 kernel and several other software advancements.
Days after the launch of ATI X1K series, and availability of CrossFire Technology, ATI has released their monthly 5.10 (October) update for their Windows CATALYST users and have accompanied the release with a new build of their Linux drivers. These drivers are dubbed v8.18.6 and are available in RPM format as well as through ATI's relatively new driver installer program that we've been accustom to seeing since their v8.14.13 release.
With the public release of the NVIDIA Linux 1.0-8XXX display drivers now coming toward the end of October, we felt it was time to offer another driver comparison of all the drivers released in roughly the past year, as we haven't done any mass comparisons since early 2005.
By now, you would almost need to be living underneath a rock to not have heard about the upcoming NVIDIA Rel80 GeForce display drivers. Although a majority of this preliminary information has been Microsoft Windows centric, today we'll be sharing with you some of the features that should be on the horizon for Linux users and the 1.0-8XXX drivers, one of which feature is the long awaited SLI support.
For the last couple of months we've been providing fairly in-depth and frequent updates in regards to NVIDIA's driver performance as well as overclocking abilities. It wasn't until recently that NVIDIA began supporting CoolBits under Linux, prior to this the only alternative was video BIOS editing or NVClock. Even though there hasn't been a major update to NVClock in over two years, earlier today the crew over at Linux Hardware released the 0.8 Beta. Today, we'll be offering up a quick preview of this latest build.
Recently, we had time to speak with the BD (Business Development) manager of XGI Technology. In this interview, we found the precise status of the current generation XGI Linux and Windows display drivers along with their future. Among other things, we learned that XGI Tech will finally be supporting the Linux 2.6 kernel in September of 2005. Join us for these exclusive details.
Today is yet another magical day for NVIDIA as they unleashed their new GeForce 7800 GTX VPU. We will be bringing numerous reviews on the different 7800 GTX cards shortly, but today, we are having a look at NVIDIA's newest Linux driver set: 1.0-7667. These Linux drivers do support the GeForce 7800 GTX and offer several other fixes for Linux users.
Over the last couple of months, we've quite extensively examined the latest Linux display drivers from both ATI and NVIDIA. We have even published two articles about Linux NVIDIA overclocking with both NVClock and CoolBits. Today, we will be continuing this never ending driver coverage as we see just how well XGI Technology fares when it comes to their Volari Linux display drivers as we attempt to run a Volari V3XT and V8 under Linux.
For months now at Phoronix we have been ranting about poor ATI Linux performance, as they simply haven't offered comparable drivers to that of NVIDIA's. However, today we may finally be able to change our stance regarding ATI's fglrx drivers, as they have released an all-new driver set (8.14.13) in addition to their monthly Windows Catalyst (5.6) release. Among other things, these new Linux drivers contain a much-improved installer.
In addition to OpenGL 2.0 and additional Xinerama support, the CoolBits feature has finally been added to NVIDIA's Linux Display Drivers. For those unfamiliar, CoolBits is an overclocking utility for NVIDIA based cards. Support for CoolBits has been built into the Windows NVIDIA drivers for quite some time, only requiring a small registry tweak in order to enable the control window. However, CoolBits has finally made its way to Linux! In this short guide we'll share with you how to enable CoolBits in the latest NVIDIA 1.0-7664 drivers along with our successes and failures we experienced using this new feature on a few of our machines.
For Windows users, with almost every new graphics driver release, whether it is ATI's CATALYST or NVIDIA's Forceware, a small boost in performance is generally noticeable to gamers. Does this same philosophy hold true with Linux NVIDIA users? At Phoronix we're trying out all of NVIDIA's Linux graphics drivers from the past year to see just how well these drivers have been tuned over time.
770 display drivers articles published on Phoronix.