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

GLX_MESA_query_renderer Extension Published

Intel

Published on 01 March 2013 09:23 PM EST
Written by Michael Larabel in Intel
6 Comments

After talking about it for months with numerous software developers, game studios, and other stakeholders, Ian Romanick of Intel has published his initial specification on GLX_MESA_query_renderer, a new GLX extension (and coming to EGL too) for helping ISVs (and namely games) better understand the system they're running on.

What GLX_MESA_query_renderer seeks to address is covered in full-length detail within Intel To Improve "Out Of The Box" Linux Gaming. The basics come down to on Linux for a software program / game to determine the graphics card in use, details of the OpenGL driver, and other system information is a real mess and lacks standardization. Games have had to resort to using the PCI library and other measures for trying to determine the graphics card in use, which isn't always in right for cases of multi-GPU systems and laptops sporting NVIDIA Optimus and various other scenarios. There's also been other aspects of determining Linux system information that's a mess.

Games and other software need this information for making smarter choices about default visual quality settings for game engines and other cases for handling driver/hardware black-lists and other aspects of delivering the best experience. The Linux situation is currently a mess, so Romanick talked with many stakeholders to come up with a new solution, that's modelled largely after Apple's handling in OS X.

The GLX_MESA_query_renderer extension provides a method of determining the graphics card(s) in use (including the vendor / device IDs), video memory information, preferred OpenGL profile, supported versions of the OpenGL Core and Compatibility problems, and OpenGL ES information. Ian Romanick has drafted the specification for this GLX work and he's also done a prototype implementation within the query-renderer branch of Mesa.

Romanick published this initial work to the Mesa-dev list. Once the specification is settled, he's also planning a similar version of MESA_query_renderer for EGL.

GLX_MESA_query_renderer works to address a real-world problem with Linux and will hopefully be adopted by games and other software making use of OpenGL in advanced modes. However, for it to be really useful and widespread, the proprietary NVIDIA and AMD graphics drivers will also need to provide support for this extension.

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. CompuLab Intense-PC2: An Excellent, Fanless, Mini PC Powered By Intel's i7 Haswell
  2. From The Atom 330 To Haswell ULT: Intel Linux Performance Benchmarks
  3. AMD Radeon R9 285 Tonga Performance On Linux
  4. Apotop Wi-Copy
Latest Linux Articles
  1. AMD Moves Forward With Unified Linux Driver Strategy, New Kernel Driver
  2. MSI: Update Your BIOS From The Linux Desktop
  3. NVIDIA vs. AMD 2D Linux Drivers: Catalyst Is Getting Quite Good At 2D
  4. 15-Way GPU Comparison With Mesa 10.3 + Linux 3.17
Latest Linux News
  1. Linux 3.18-rc1 Released One Week Early With Many Changes
  2. The VC4 Gallium3D Driver Is Still Moving Along For The Raspberry Pi
  3. Direct3D 9 Support Might Land Within Mainline Mesa 3D Drivers
  4. OpenGL Preview Benchmarks For NVIDIA's GeForce GTX 970
  5. HOPE: The Ease Of Python With The Speed Of C++
  6. Vitesse: Using LLVM To Speed Up Databases
  7. AMD Is Restructuring Again, Losing 7% Of Employees
  8. Linux Testing Of The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970
  9. Qt 5.4 Now In Beta With Web, Bluetooth LE, Graphics Improvements
  10. AMD's Radeon R9 285 On Linux Offers Good OpenCL Performance
Latest Forum Discussions
  1. AMD Is Restructuring Again, Losing 7% Of Employees
  2. Bye bye BSD, Hello Linux: A Sys Admin's Story
  3. NVIDIA Presents Its Driver Plans To Support Mir/Wayland & KMS On Linux
  4. Open-Source AMD Fusion E-350 Support Takes A Dive
  5. Upgrade to Kaveri, very slow VDPAU performance
  6. ChromeOS Drops Support For EXT2/EXT3/EXT4 File-Systems
  7. Lennart Poettering On The Open-Source Community: A Sick Place To Be In
  8. The Slides Announcing The New "AMDGPU" Kernel Driver