The testing was done from an Intel Core i5 "Sandy Bridge" laptop that presents Intel HD 3000 "Gen6" graphics. While there were no stated performance optimizations within the Intel DRM driver changes piling up for Linux 3.8, I was curious to see if there was anything that went unnoticed or any regressions. For this quick weekend testing, the drm-next code from 13 December was compared to the vanilla Linux 3.6 and 3.7 kernels.
For better or worse, there really isn't much to see about this drm-next code to land in the Linux 3.8 kernel when it comes to performance at least for Sandy Bridge. The system information in full along with all of the test results can be found in 1212155-RA-LINUX38DR26 on OpenBenchmarking.org.
Continue on at OpenBenchmarking.org.
The Intel Sandy Bridge OpenGL performance under Linux has basically flattened out on recent Linux kernel releases compared to early on when the hardware was still fresh and the Intel OTC developers were making aggressive optimizations. These days the developers are mostly focused upon enabling support for Haswell and Valley View along with other changes.
In terms of the (non-performance) Intel graphics driver changes you will be able to find in Linux 3.8, see Intel Still Sorting Out Haswell On Linux and Intel Driver Changes Building Up For Linux 3.8 Kernel.
More Intel benchmarks from other hardware generations will come as the Linux 3.8 kernel matures in the coming weeks with today's tests just being some early pre-merge drm-next numbers.