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

Bumblebee Has Tumbleweed For NVIDIA Optimus On Linux

NVIDIA

Published on 20 January 2012 10:02 AM EST
Written by Michael Larabel in NVIDIA
9 Comments

Bumblebee 3.0 "Tumbleweed" has been released as an updated (and unofficial) way of handling NVIDIA Optimus technology under Linux.

Optimus, the NVIDIA technology that's becoming found on an increasing number of notebooks as a means of dynamically enabling a discrete GPU on the notebook for maximum performance only when needed and to be turned off otherwise to conserve power, has been troubling on Linux since its inception. NVIDIA doesn't officially support Optimus under Linux, so the Linux development community is left to do what they can to support this growingly-popular feature.

Some work on this front has been the experimental PRIME GPU offloading work, GPU hot-switching for X.Org, VGA Switcheroo, and some work in the Nouveau land towards Optimus support. There's also been the prime-ng / Bumblebee project that strives for this notebook technology support.

The Bumblebee 3.0 release comes after two months of development. This new release has been re-written in C and it also now features automatic power management support "out of the box" (bbswitch and vga_switcheroo power management for Nouveau driver), better configuration support, more proper system integration, and other changes. The highlights are talked about in the Bumblebee 3.0 release notes.

There's also additional details on the Bumblebee 3.0 release from the Linux Hybrid Graphics Blogspot. Packages of Bumblebee 3.0 for Ubuntu, Debian, Mandriva, and Arch Linux are currently available.

The Bumblebee implementation tries to copy how NVIDIA Optimus works under Linux with regards to using the dedicated GPU just for rendering. With this new release, there's now the much-needed power management support too. Bumblebee is implemented by creating a separate X.Org Server as a fake environment and then is called to do the OpenGL work via VirtualGL as basically a remote server.

Along with Bumblebee, there still is the fork of Bumblebee known as Ironhide -- with the same goal of NVIDIA Optimus on Linux -- that was done by one of the former Bumblebee developers.

About The Author
Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the web-site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience and being the largest web-site devoted to Linux hardware reviews, particularly for products relevant to Linux gamers and enthusiasts but also commonly reviewing servers/workstations and embedded Linux devices. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics hardware drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated testing software. He can be followed via and or contacted via .
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. Intel Core i7 5960X CPU Core Scaling Under Linux
  2. AMD RadeonSI Gallium3D Performance For 4K Linux Gaming
  3. 9-Way File-System Comparison With A SSD On The Linux 3.17 Kernel
  4. GCC 5.0 Outruns LLVM 3.5 Compiler By A Bit On Core-AVX2
Latest Linux News
  1. Linux 3.17-rc5 Kernel Released
  2. FreeBSD 10.1 In Beta Ahead Of Planned Release Next Month
  3. RadeonSI Gallium3D-Nine Can Beat AMD Catalyst With Some Wine Tests
  4. NVIDIA Maxwell GPU Support On Nouveau Still Requires More Work
  5. The Meizu MX4 Phone With Ubuntu Is Expected To Be Out In December
  6. Samsung Reportedly Designing Its Own GPU
  7. KDevelop 4.7 Has Changes For Cross-Compiling, Bzr Support & More
  8. Intel Haswell-ULT Graphics Don't Change Much With Linux 3.17, Mesa 10.4
  9. Running GCC 5 On Intel's Haswell-E i7-5960X
  10. Wayland Is Still In Ubuntu 14.10
Latest Forum Discussions
  1. New Group Calls For Boycotting Systemd
  2. support for first generation UVD blocks (RV6xx, RS780, RS880 and RV790)
  3. Nvidia joins the ranks of Apple and Microsoft
  4. Hd 6850
  5. nv and xorg.conf under Debian PPC
  6. X.Org Is Looking For Some Female Help
  7. FSF Issues Their Rebuttal To Apple's New iPhone, Watch & Apple Pay
  8. Updated and Optimized Ubuntu Free Graphics Drivers