Support For The X.Org State Tracker In R300g Killed
Written by Michael Larabel in X.Org on 14 January 2013 at 08:44 AM EST. 5 Comments
The X.Org state tracker target, which allows for providing basic 2D/EXA acceleration with the X.Org Server over GPU shaders using a generic Gallium3D state tracker, is no longer supported by the R300 Gallium3D driver. Support has been eliminated and the X.Org state tracker targets for other Gallium3D drivers might also be dropped.

On Sunday there was a commit by Marek Olšák that was entitled r300g: kill the X.Org state tracker target. Marek's reasoning for this comes down to, "This won't ever be made default and we don't need it anyway. We should also consider doing this for other drivers."

For R300 through R500 (Radeon X1000) class hardware as supported by this open-source Gallium3D driver already has the well oiled and tuned xf86-video-ati DDX driver that has proper 2D/EXA acceleration plus as of last year can optionally rely upon the GLAMOR acceleration architecture. The X.Org state tracker has been available for use with R300g, but hasn't seen any widespread or serious adoption.

Back in August of 2011 I wrote about my experiences with using the Xorg state tracker on R300g -- it wasn't too good. R600g also supports this state tracker as does Nouveau and the AMD "RadeonSI" driver, but we may see the support dropped per Marek's commit message.

The only vendor really concerned about doing 2D in Gallium3D has been VMware. With VMware's virtual graphics stack they were using the X.Org state tracker but then eventually the acceleration paths turned into the XA state tracker that they are still using within their "vmwgfx" virtual graphics driver stack.

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Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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