Nouveau, the reverse-engineered open-source NVIDIA Linux graphics driver that's been in development now for the better part of a decade, is working brilliantly for some NVIDIA GeForce graphics cards while for other NVIDIA GPUs the experience is a sloppy mess. Using the Linux 3.13 kernel and Mesa 10.1-devel Gallium3D driver code installed on top of Ubuntu 13.10, here's what the experience is like when trying a number of GeForce graphics cards with this latest open-source driver code.
Yesterday I ran the latest RadeonSI Gallium3D vs. Catalyst AMD Linux driver comparison, effectively another round of open-source vs. closed-source GPU driver testing. In yesterday's article it was found the RadeonSI performance is improving a lot but the AMD Catalyst Linux driver remains much faster. In this article are benchmarks of the older "R600" Radeon Gallium3D driver compared to the Catalyst driver with graphics cards from the Radeon HD 6000 series and older where the open-source R600g driver provides support and in a more mature state.
While NVIDIA's binary driver is much faster and better than AMD's Catalyst, on the open-source driver side is where AMD has been shining. While their RadeonSI Gallium3D driver for Radeon HD 7000 series GPUs and newer is not nearly as well off as their pre-HD 7000 series (R600g) Gallium3D driver, they are making progress. In this article are benchmarks showing the "out of the box" performance on Ubuntu 13.10 with the modern open-source driver, benchmarks with the latest kernel and Mesa and LLVM, and then the AMD Catalyst driver. A range of modern Radeon HD 7000 and R9 graphics processors were used for this open-source versus closed-source driver testing.
Back in November I published my review of the AMD Radeon R9 290 on Linux. This high-end AMD Radeon "Hawaii" graphics card ended up being a wreck on Linux: its performance was devastating. Radeon R9 290X owners have also reported their Linux performance with the Catalyst driver has been less than stellar. In new tests conducted last week with the latest AMD and NVIDIA binary graphics drivers, the high-end AMD GPUs still really aren't proving much competition to NVIDIA's Kepler graphics cards. Here's a new 12 graphics card comparison on Ubuntu.
Now having looked at the Windows 8.1 vs. Ubuntu Linux performance, carried out an initial GPU comparison, and compared several Intel/AMD processors, our latest performance investigation with AMD's A10-7850K "Kaveri" APU is looking at the Radeon R7 Graphics performance on Ubuntu Linux when using the open-source "RadeonSI" Gallium3D driver and then using the closed-source AMD Catalyst driver.
The Linux 3.13 kernel that will be released in the very near future is very worth the upgrade if you are a RadeonSI user -- in particular, the Radeon HD 7000 series GPUs and newer on the Gallium3D Linux graphics driver -- but other open-source graphics driver users as well may also see nice improvements in the new kernel release. Here's some benchmarks showing off the gains found with the Linux 3.13 kernel for Radeon HD and R9 graphics cards.
In continuation from last month's Intel Haswell Linux Performance Improved A Lot In 2013, here are benchmarks of Intel "Ivy Bridge" HD Graphics 4000 when comparing the performance over the past year.
While Ubuntu on the desktop won't be shipping with Mir/XMir by default until Ubuntu 14.04, since I did some recent Wayland benchmarks on Fedora 20, I decided to run some benchmarks of Ubuntu 14.04 in its development state when comparing the OpenGL gaming performance of running through the X.Org Server (the default) versus running Unity 7 with XMir.
In several Phoronix articles I've already shared Mesa 10.1-devel benchmarks of this latest open-source graphics driver code currently under development. Most of the open-source graphics tests at Phoronix are done on higher-end hardware, so for this article we're checking on the latest open-source graphics performance when using the low-end Celeron and Pentium processors of the Haswell generation.
A few days ago I published the AMD Catalyst 2013 Year-In-Review that looked at all of AMD's binary Linux GPU driver releases of 2013. The state of Catalyst in 2013 was rather sad, especially compared to NVIDIA's very exciting year. Fortunately, on the open-source side, the AMD Gallium3D-based driver had a great year with many improvements made that are beginning to make the open-source driver sufficient for gaming with Radeon GPUs.
While an X.Org Server is still used by default on Fedora 20 "Heisenbug", Wayland has become a viable option for early adopters and developers wishing to work on Wayland software compatibility and/or testing. All the packages are needed on a Fedora 20 installation to launch a GNOME Wayland session and begin working, including support for XWayland in order to run X11-dependent games and applications.
After earlier this month delivering the 2013 NVIDIA Linux Year-In-Review, an annual article I've been writing for both AMD and NVIDIA since 2005 to cover the Linux driver and support improvements made each passing year, it's now time to take a look at the Catalyst Linux driver releases from 2013. While NVIDIA added many new features to their Linux driver, enhanced many existing features, and continued delivering first-rate Linux GPU support at launch-time, it's not been the same for AMD's Linux team.
With the end of the year quickly approaching, at Phoronix I have been re-testing all of the Linux graphics drivers to see how the performance has changed in 2013 and the features added/removed over the calendar year. I've been doing these annual Linux driver yearly recaps going back to 2005 when Linux GPU drivers were in their infancy compared to Windows. Yesterday I started with the NVIDIA 2013 Linux Year-In-Review of their first-rate binary driver while today I have some performance tests done for Intel's latest-generation Haswell graphics hardware.
For the ninth year in a row I am issuing year-in-review articles concerning the state of NVIDIA's (and separately, AMD Catalyst) Linux graphics driver and the accomplishments the driver's made in the past calendar year along with benchmarks of all notable driver releases this year. NVIDIA's made a lot of progress on the Linux front this year, especially for any Linux gaming stakeholder, so let's get started on our 2013 NVIDIA Linux Year-In-Review.
In continuing from yesterday's article that offered up fresh benchmarks of Intel Sandy Bridge & Ivy Bridge CPUs with the latest Linux code atop Ubuntu 13.10, out today are new graphics benchmarks using the very latest open-source Intel Linux graphics driver code and trying out CPUs with HD Graphics 2000, 2500, 3000. The open-source Intel graphics driver has certainly matured a lot since the debut of Sandy Bridge and Ivy Bridge CPUs!
After delivering Radeon Gallium3D MSAA benchmarks earlier in the week to share where the open-source AMD driver is at in its support for multi-sample anti-aliasing, here's some AA benchmarks from NVIDIA's high-class binary Linux graphics driver. The NVIDIA Linux driver offers some of the best anti-aliasing support among Linux graphics drivers.
It's been a while since last looking on the anti-aliasing performance of the R600 Gallium3D driver so for this article we have some fresh MSAA benchmarks of the driver from Mesa 10.1-devel and using a Cayman-based high-end AMD Radeon graphics card.
Earlier this month I ran some benchmarks showing that with the very latest open-source AMD Linux graphics driver code, the AMD APU Gallium3D performance can be ~80%+ the speed of Catalyst, the notorious Linux binary graphics driver. For end-users curious what the AMD A10-6800K "Richland" APU performance is comparable to when it comes to discrete Radeon graphics cards with the R600 Gallium3D driver, here's some weekend comparison benchmarks.
After running earlier this week a 21-way graphics card comparison with Intel, AMD, and NVIDIA GPUs, there were requests by some Phoronix readers to see some new APU performance numbers. For ending out November, here's new Catalyst vs. Gallium3D driver benchmarks on Ubuntu Linux for the AMD A10-6800K with its Radeon HD 8670D graphics. The results with the latest Linux kernel and Mesa are very positive towards the open-source AMD driver where in some tests the performance can nearly match Catalyst! For at least one Source Engine game, the open-source driver can now even run significantly faster than the binary driver.
If you are hoping to snag some deals on computer hardware this holiday shopping season, for helping guide you in any graphics card purchases are a fresh round of benchmarks of 21 different graphics processors from the Intel HD Graphics, AMD Radeon, and NVIDIA GeForce families tested on their respective open-source Linux graphics drivers.
With being in the process of checking out several new NVIDIA GeForce 700 GPUs on Linux, now that I have out of the way the GeForce GTX 760 / 770 / 780 Ti / TITAN Linux benchmarks and Windows vs. Linux NVIDIA benchmarks, I decided to see how these four "Kepler" graphics cards are working with Nouveau, the open-source NVIDIA graphics driver that's written through clean-room reverse-engineering. Up until recently Nouveau has just been an open-source community project, except now NVIDIA is beginning to support Nouveau and open-source, so let's see how it runs on this latest high-end graphics hardware.
While I'm now onto benchmarking several new NVIDIA graphics cards under Linux and also the AMD Radeon R9 290, earlier this week I ran some more open-source vs. closed-source driver benchmarks on Ubuntu Linux. Here's fresh benchmark results when comparing eight AMD Radeon graphics cards on the open (Gallium3D) and closed-source (Catalyst) drivers and running various Linux OpenGL workloads.
Recently I published OpenGL benchmark results on Phoronix showing the open-source R600 Gallium3D driver competing with Catalyst for Radeon HD 5000/6000 series graphics cards. For the Radeon HD 7000 series and newer "GCN" graphics cards that are supported by the different RadeonSI driver, the performance has a ways to improve. What wasn't included with those recent Phoronix articles were looking at the performance for the Radeon HD 4000 series GPUs, which is now only supported by the open-source driver and the Catalyst Legacy driver that doesn't work on modern Linux distributions. Therefore, for this article we're looking at the Catalyst Legacy performance on Ubuntu 12.10 (as well as its open-source R600g driver at the time) and compare it to the OpenGL performance found out of the box on Ubuntu 13.10 and then with the latest Linux 3.12 and Mesa 10.0 driver code.
For kicking off a new week of Linux benchmarking, to share today are benchmarks looking at three Radeon HD 7000 / Radeon Rx 200 series graphics cards on Ubuntu Linux when looking at the GLAMOR acceleration architecture performance with xf86-video-ati when compared to the proprietary Catalyst driver on the same hardware.
A few days back I delivered a fresh round of RadeonSI Gallium3D benchmarks showing the open-source AMD Radeon driver improving but still a long shot from the Catalyst driver. Shortly thereafter, it was announced the open-source driver would enable 2D color tiling by default. As earlier Phoronix benchmarks have shown, color tiling can be a big performance win so over the weekend I carried out some new performance tests looking at the impact of enabling color tiling for the RadeonSI driver that supports the HD 7000/8000 series and Rx 200 series graphics processors.
After last week delivering a Linux hardware review of the AMD Radeon R9 270X graphics card with the binary Catalyst driver on Ubuntu, and then yesterday looking at the Radeon Gallium3D driver posing a threat to Catalyst when using the mature "R600g" driver on HD 5000/600 series hardware, up today are new open vs. closed-source benchmarks. In this article we're looking at the performance of the Radeon R9 270X GPU when using the Ubuntu 13.10 open-source graphics stack, then when upgrading to Mesa 10.0 with Linux 3.12 DPM, and then comparing those numbers to the proprietary Catalyst Linux graphics driver.
A few days back I delivered benchmark results of a 13-way graphics card comparison comparing the OpenGL gaming performance between Ubuntu Linux and Microsoft Windows 8.1. In that article there were multiple AMD Radeon and NVIDIA GeForce graphics cards tested using the binary drivers for each operating system. On Wednesday I then shared results with the Radeon Gallium3D driver compared to Catalyst on Linux and Windows while today are some of the early Nouveau results compared to the proprietary NVIDIA GPU drivers on Windows and Linux.
With recent milestones like the Radeon performance improvements in Linux 3.12 that come as a side-effect from a CPUfreq change, Radeon DPM, and the improvements found by the upcoming Mesa 10.0 release, and numerous other open-source driver improvements, the AMD's Radeon Gallium3D performance is very competitive to AMD's Catalyst driver. This close level of performance is for the R600 Gallium3D driver with GPUs like the Radeon HD 5000/6000 series graphics cards. Here's some benchmarks showing how the open-source AMD Radeon performance compares today to the closed-source Catalyst driver on Windows and Ubuntu Linux. In some of today's new data, the open-source driver was running 80%+ the speed of AMD's Catalyst driver.
After last week publishing a Linux review of the GeForce GTX 650 using the proprietary NVIDIA Linux graphics driver, I set out to run a new performance comparison of the open-source "Nouveau" graphics driver against NVIDIA's official closed-source Linux driver. In this comparison, five different GeForce 400/500 "Fermi" and GeForce 600 "Kepler" graphics cards were benchmarked under Ubuntu Linux on each driver.
If you're in the market for a low-end graphics processor that's compatible with Linux and the available open-source Mesa/Gallium3D graphics drivers, here's a roundup of benchmark results for seven different AMD, Intel, and NVIDIA graphics processors.
769 display drivers articles published on Phoronix.