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

Intel Driver Now Builds SNA Support By Default

Intel

Published on 12 July 2012 07:40 PM EDT
Written by Michael Larabel in Intel
3 Comments

The xf86-video-intel driver, the open-source X.Org driver for Intel's graphics processors on Linux, is now being built with Sandy Bridge New Acceleration (SNA acceleration) by default. This means of acceleration is generally much faster than the long-standing UXA mode for both old and new hardware.

Chris Wilson enabled the compilation of SNA by default in a Git commit this afternoon. While that's happened, it's not being used by default. The SNA support and the different generational SNA back-ends are being compiled and built into the driver, but for now at least, it requires setting the AccelMethod within the xorg.conf to SNA rather than UXA or GLAMOR.

The SNA support is now being explictly built by default when using X.Org Server 1.10 or newer. It's too bad that it's not the default yet, but at least this will make it easy for users to switch to this means of faster and more robust 2D acceleration. This will be a change to be found in the xf86-video-intel 2.20 driver release.

SNA benchmarks for Ivy Bridge, benchmarks on Sandy Bridge, and even older generations of Intel hardware are quite positive towards SNA when compared to the default UXA or the new GLAMOR acceleration alternative. While the name might be confusing, SNA isn't limited to just Sandy/Ivy Bridge hardware but there's 2D back-ends going back to earlier Intel IGP generations.

There's no word yet when SNA may succeed UXA as the default choice, but today's Git activity is a step in that direction. Last I heard a few months back is that Intel was still resistant to changing the default 2D acceleration mode over fear of fallout and regressions for some users, especially after the problems in past years when transitioning from EXA to UXA, DRI2/KMS, GEM, and the other big underlying changes.

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. AMD Launches New FX CPUs, Cuts Prices On Existing Processors
  2. Preview: AMD's FX-9590 Eight-Core At Up To 5.0GHz On Linux
  3. Intel Launches The Core i7 5960X, Mighty Powerful Haswell-E CPUs
  4. AMD Radeon R9 290: Gallium3D vs. Catalyst Drivers
Latest Linux Articles
  1. Ondemand vs. Performance CPU Governing For AMD FX CPUs On Linux 3.17
  2. How Intel Graphics On Linux Compare To Open-Source AMD/NVIDIA Drivers
  3. The Fastest NVIDIA GPUs For Open-Source Nouveau With Steam Linux Gaming
  4. Testing For The Latest Linux Kernel Power Regression
Latest Linux News
  1. New Group Calls For Boycotting Systemd
  2. The Features To Find With The Imminent Release Of LLVM/Clang 3.5
  3. Borderlands 2 Is Coming To Linux
  4. The Witcher 2 Ups The Performance More & Works Around Catalyst Bug
  5. Running Gallium3D's LLVMpipe On The Eight-Core 5GHz CPU
  6. Trying Intel OpenCL On Linux For Video Encoding
  7. GSoC 2014 Yielded Some Improvements For Mesa/X.Org This Year
  8. webOS Lives On As LuneOS With New Release
  9. Marek Lands Radeon Gallium3D HyperZ Improvements
  10. Mozilla Firefox 32 Surfaces With HTML5, Developer Changes
Latest Forum Discussions
  1. Lennart Poettering Talks Up His New Linux Vision That Involves Btrfs
  2. nv and xorg.conf under Debian PPC
  3. AMD graphics doesn't work with AMD Catalyst drivers
  4. Best Radeon for a Power Mac G5?
  5. The dangers of Linux kernel development
  6. Updated and Optimized Ubuntu Free Graphics Drivers
  7. AMD Releases UVD Video Decode Support For R600 GPUs
  8. SSD seems slow