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

John Carmack Shares More Of His Linux Views

Gaming

Published on 06 February 2013 10:56 AM EST
Written by Michael Larabel in Gaming
21 Comments

John Carmack, the co-founder of id Software that's widely known through gaming circles due to his remarkable work on developing Doom and Quake and other titles, sparked some controversy earlier this week when he promoted Wine for Linux gaming over native Linux game ports. He's now provided some additional clarification and thoughts.

As a comment on Reddit, John Carmack himself responded to the discussion about his Wine Linux gaming statements.

Some of his key points from the rather lengthy post include:

- Carmack does wish Linux for its best, but it barely makes it as a top priority of his. He does use Linux at his aerospace company, but he isn't using Linux on any of his desktops.

- He's ported to port games to Linux for technical reasons so he can use Valgrind again and NVIDIA can do more experimental GPU driver work for R&D under Linux.

- "Working on open source Linux OpenGL drivers again would also be fun if I ever had the time."

- Unlike id Software before it was acquired, Zenimax doesn't have any policy for "unofficial binaries." id Software would formerly release their Linux game binaries without any official support, but there's no policy at Zenimax for being able to have an unofficial OS port.

- Carmack's forceful internal pushes towards his new handlers have been about continuing id Software open-source code releases for their old game engines. He feels this has broader benefits than unsupported Linux binaries.

- Zenimax doesn't even do Apple Mac OS X game ports themselves but hands it off to a separate publisher.

- It's hard to get a top ten publisher to take you seriously unless you have at least a six figure guarantee.

- About Wine / emulated gaming: "I truly do feel that emulation of some sort is a proper technical direction for gaming on Linux. It is obviously pragmatic in the range of possible support, but it shouldn’t have the technical stigma that it does. There really isn’t much of anything special that a native port does – we still make OpenGL calls, winsock is just BSD sockets, windows threads become pthreads, and the translation of input and audio interfaces don’t make much difference (XInput and Xaudio2 are good APIs!). A good shim layer should have far less impact on performance than the variability in driver quality."

- Specifically about Direct3D translating: "Translating from D3D to OpenGL would involve more inefficiencies, but figuring out exactly what the difficulties are and making some form of “D3D interop” extension for OpenGL to smooth it out is a lot easier than making dozens of completely refactored, high performance native ports."

- Ending comments about Wine for gaming: "Ideally, following a set of best practice guidelines could allow developers to get Linux versions with little more effort than supporting, say, Windows XP. Properly evangelized, with Steam as a monetized distribution platform, this is a plausible path forward."

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. Intel Launches The Core i7 5960X, Mighty Powerful Haswell-E CPUs
  2. AMD Radeon R9 290: Gallium3D vs. Catalyst Drivers
  3. AMD Radeon R9 290 Open-Source Driver Works, But Has A Ways To Go
  4. Trying The Configurable 45 Watt TDP With AMD's A10-7800 / A6-7400K
Latest Linux Articles
  1. The Fastest NVIDIA GPUs For Open-Source Nouveau With Steam Linux Gaming
  2. Testing For The Latest Linux Kernel Power Regression
  3. The Most Energy Efficient Radeon GPU For AMD Linux Gaming
  4. 20-Way Radeon Comparison With Open-Source Graphics For Steam On Linux Gaming
Latest Linux News
  1. Coreboot Adds Lenovo X220 With Native Sandy Bridge Support
  2. Canonical Has Yet To Land X.Org Server 1.16 For Ubuntu 14.10
  3. Imagination Launches A MIPS Development Board
  4. Getting Involved With The New Raspberry Pi Graphics Driver
  5. A New AMD Catalyst Linux Driver Unofficially Surfaces
  6. LibreOffice Ported To 64-bit ARM (AArch64)
  7. Enlightenment E19 RC3 Shows Off The New Wayland Compositor
  8. Metro Redux Is Going To Require OpenGL 4.x On Linux
  9. Jailhouse v0.1 Released As A Basic Hypervisor For Linux
  10. Google's Chromebook "Samus" Now Supported By Coreboot
Latest Forum Discussions
  1. Btrfs Gets Talked Up, Googler Encourages You To Try Btrfs
  2. Catalyst 14.201.1008
  3. It's Now Possible To Play Netflix Natively On Linux Without Wine Plug-Ins
  4. Users defect to Linux as OpenBSD removes Lynx from base system
  5. Updated and Optimized Ubuntu Free Graphics Drivers
  6. Canonical Joined The Khronos Group To Help Mir/Wayland Drivers
  7. Radeon HD5670 and Ubuntu 14.04
  8. AMD Releases UVD Video Decode Support For R600 GPUs