As a recap for January 2013, here's the most popular featured articles and news stories that happened this month on Phoronix, the leading resource for Linux enthusiasts, gamers, and those into hardware on open-source operating systems. Phoronix continues to be the most prolific source for original reporting about Linux development, especially when it comes to graphics drivers, gaming, and hardware support/performance.
This month there were 239 news postings (an average of nearly eight postings per day) and 20 featured articles to be published this month, all by your's truly. If you appreciate all of this work that goes into enriching the Linux hardware experience, open-source benchmarking, Linux gaming, and other initiatives, please subscribe to Phoronix Premium or make a PayPal tip. At least ensure you are not using AdBlock or other publisher-destroying extensions while browsing this web-site. You can also follow Phoronix on Facebook and via @MichaelLarabel amd @Phoronix on Twitter.
Here's the top news from January:
Blizzard Entertainment Planning A Linux Game For 2013
Blizzard Entertainment, the game studio behind wildly-popular games like World of Warcraft, Diablo, and StarCraft, is planning for a Linux game announcement in 2013.
Valve Pushes Out Half-Life For Linux
Valve has originally ported their original Half-Life title to Linux.
Alan Cox Calls Fedora 18 "The Worst Red Hat Distro"
Alan Cox, the venerable Linux kernel developer presently employed by Intel and an avid open-source enthusiast, has lashed out against the recent release of Fedora 18. Cox calls the new Fedora release, "the worst Red Hat distro I've ever seen." Alan ended up switching to Ubuntu as a result of his disastrous experience with Fedora 18.
C++11 & The Long-Term Viability Of GCC Is Questioned
Back on Tuesday there was a basic email by a developer volleyed on the GCC mailing list, which has since sparked dozens of responses and a rather interesting conversation about the future of the GNU Compiler Collection and its ultimate path and viability moving forward. The initial e-mail was simply an inquiry asking about an estimated time-frame for having full support of the ISO C++11 specification. Diego Novillo, a well known GCC developer and Google employee, has even expressed fear that GCC may be past the tipping point and could die out naturally.
Thanks Valve, Another Game Comes To Linux
A new game is coming to Linux via Valve's Steam client as the result of Steam Greenlight and interest in the Linux platform.
FSF Wastes Away Another "High Priority" Project
There's a new situation concerning another high-priority Free Software Foundation project and the unwillingness by Richard Stallman and the FSF to cooperate with real-world free software developers.
John Carmack's Comments On C/C++
John Carmack, the veteran game programmer that co-founded id Software and was the lead developer on the id Tech engine and their most popular game titles, has shared some new opinions on C/C++ programming as it pertains to the id Tech game engine.
10 Year Old KDE Bug Finally Gets Fixed
A bug that has been present in the KDE Libraries for the past decade has finally been fixed.
First Statistics On Steam Linux Usage
Valve has released their December Steam statistics that show initial data on Linux client usage.
Linux-Based Steam Console Reaffirmed For This Year
As said a few times already, this year will be marked by the release of a Linux-based Steam hardware gaming console out of Valve.
And the most popular featured articles were:
Ubuntu 13.04 Will Improve Gaming On Open-Source GPU Drivers
While still a ways from being comparable to the proprietary graphics drivers in terms of features and OpenGL performance, the open-source GPU drivers found by default in the forthcoming Ubuntu 13.04 release are a big improvement over the out-of-the-box graphics drivers found in earlier Ubuntu Linux releases. The Ubuntu desktop is also faster thanks to improvements to its Unity desktop environment and Compiz compositing window manager. In this article are Linux gaming benchmarks looking at the performance of Fedora 17, Fedora 18, Ubuntu 12.10, and a preliminary Ubuntu 13.04 development snapshot. In this first article, the OpenGL performance of Intel and Radeon graphics are being benchmarked.
Nouveau Driver Remains Much Slower Than NVIDIA's Official Driver
While benchmarks this week have shown the Nouveau driver can be faster with the Linux 3.8 kernel, further benchmarks have shown that this reverse-engineered open-source driver for supporting the spectrum of NVIDIA GPUs is still at a significant loss compared to NVIDIA's official but proprietary Linux graphics driver.
Ubuntu 13.04 Desktop Gaming Performance Comparison
In this article are some early benchmark results comparing the OpenGL gaming performance of the Unity, Xfce, Openbox, LXDE, KDE, GNOME Shell, and Enlightenment desktops when running on a recent development snapshot of Ubuntu 13.04. As many earlier benchmarks have shown, the OpenGL frame-rate for Linux games can sway quite greatly depending upon the desktop in use and more specifically the desktop's compositing window manager.
Linux 3.2 To 3.8 Kernels With Intel Ivy Bridge Graphics
With the Intel Haswell product launch coming up soon, here's a look at how the Intel "Ivy Bridge" HD 4000 graphics support has matured on the seven most recent Linux kernel releases. This benchmarking shows how the performance of the Intel DRM driver has changed between the Linux 3.2 kernel and the Linux 3.8 kernel that's presently under development when using the integrated graphics found on the latest-generation Core i7 CPU.
Early Benchmark Preview Of The Linux 3.8 Kernel
While there's already been articles looking at the Nouveau NVIDIA driver and AMD Radeon driver on the forthcoming Linux 3.8 kernel, up today are some early computational benchmarks of this new kernel. From an Intel Core i7 "Ivy Bridge" system, some general-purpose Linux benchmarks were conducted from the Linux 3.5 kernel release through the latest Linux 3.8 Git development kernel.
Nouveau NVIDIA Driver Can Be Faster With Linux 3.8
Published already on Phoronix have been benchmarks of the in-development Linux 3.8 kernel when it comes to measuring the DRM graphics driver performance improvements for AMD Radeon hardware. In this article is a look at the Nouveau driver performance, the reverse-engineered open-source NVIDIA graphics driver. There's a fair amount of changes to look forward to in the next Linux kernel release for Nouveau and it's yielding some performance improvements.
Early Ubuntu 13.04 Benchmarks On The Intel Atom
On Friday benchmarks were delivered of the Atom-based NVIDIA ION platform with the Nouveau driver against NVIDIA's binary blob. Those results were favorable towards the reverse-engineered, open-source NVIDIA driver. For finishing off the week are more benchmarks from this aging NVIDIA ION system but this time seeing how well the low-end 64-bit Ubuntu performance is when comparing the latest 13.04 development image to the 12.10 and 12.04.1 LTS releases.
Fedora 17 vs. Fedora 18 Benchmarks
The latest performance benchmarks of Fedora 18 to share are of Fedora 17 vs. Fedora 18. Benchmarks were done from two separate systems with clean installs of the "Beefy Miracle" and "Spherical Cow" releases out of Red Hat.
NVIDIA GeForce 600 "Kepler" On Open-Source: It's Uselessly Slow
With the Linux 3.8 kernel that's presently under development, the open-source reverse-engineered Nouveau driver for supporting NVIDIA graphics processors has seen some significant changes. One of the late changes was enabling Kepler acceleration support. While there is now an "out of the box" open-source GPU driver that supports the GeForce 600 GPUs with 3D/OpenGL acceleration, it's incredibly slow.
Five-Way NVIDIA GeForce Comparison On Nouveau
With the GeForce 600 "Kepler" graphics cards now working on Nouveau in an out-of-the-box manner with OpenGL acceleration, here's a brief five-way NVIDIA GeForce graphics card comparison when using the Nouveau open-source driver with the Linux 3.8 kernel and Mesa 9.1-devel.