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AMD Evergreen Gallium3D Officially Does GLSL 1.30

AMD

Published on 20 April 2012 05:51 PM EDT
Written by Michael Larabel in AMD
11 Comments

The AMD Radeon HD 5000 "Evergreen" graphics cards, which at the hardware level is capable of OpenGL 4.2 / GLSL 4.20, is finally advertising GLSL 1.30 compliance by default with the Mesa Gallium3D "R600g" driver. GLSL 1.30 is the GL Shading Language revision introduced at the time of OpenGL 3.0.

Just hours after breaking the news that AMD will be discontinuing the Radeon HD 2000/3000/4000 series support in the coming months from their proprietary Catalyst driver, the open-source driver moved a bit further along. David Airlie made a Mesa commit today that enables GLSL 1.30 for AMD Evergreen (Radeon HD 5000 series) hardware by default.

This GLSL 1.30 enabling isn't because of some radical new commit to the Radeon Gallium3D driver, but rather is just to set the bit to enabled-by-default for Evergreen after ongoing work that has built up in recent weeks and months.

From David's commit, "I've done a piglit run on my SUMO machine and I see no regressions. Lots of things to fix (skip->fail), but hey maybe we can fix them if we can see them. I'll try and work my way across r600,700,cayman sometime if nobody else gets to them."

Up to this point GLSL 1.20 has been advertised unless setting the R600_GLSL130 environment variable to enable the OpenGL 3.0 version of the GL Shading Language. Aside from Evergreen, other Radeon generations capable of OpenGL 3.0 (the Radeon HD 2000/3000/4000 series as well as the Radeon HD 6000 series) remain at the 1.20 level. The premature RadeonSI Gallium3D driver for the Radeon HD 7000 series also has a ways before it's ready to handle GLSL 1.30+ compliance.

Outside of the Radeon world, the Intel Mesa DRI driver with Sandy Bridge and Ivy Bridge hardware indicates GL Shading Language 1.30 compliance (that's where Mesa lost its GLSL 1.30 virginity in late 2011). The Nouveau NVC0 "Fermi" hardware also advertises GLSL 1.30 support while the other generations remain at 1.20. Gallium3D Softpipe/LLVMpipe has also been chopping towards GL3/GLSL1.30.

Meanwhile the latest upstream GL Shading Language specification is version 4.20 with OpenGL 4.2 from August, though a new OpenGL/GLSL specification is likely coming this summer to put Mesa/Gallium3D further behind. It's only the proprietary AMD and NVIDIA graphics drivers under Linux that have been able to keep up with the latest specifications from the Khronos Group; this is just one of the reasons why there's now 70+ comments mostly criticizing AMD for so quickly dropping the Radeon HD 4000 series support and earlier from the Catalyst Linux blob.

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