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

QXL Gallium3D Wrapper Driver Is Brought Up

Virtualization

Published on 20 March 2013 06:16 AM EDT
Written by Michael Larabel in Virtualization
1 Comment

After a QXL KMS DRM driver was finally published for improving the desktop virtualization experience with Red Hat's Linux virtualization stack in conjunction with SPICE on QEMU, a Gallium3D wrapper driver is now being talked about.

Before getting too excited, however, this wrapper driver is about only optimizing the 3D experience for ultimately passing calls to Gallium3D's Softpipe / LLVMpipe software-based drivers. This isn't about passing calls onto any hardware driver/GPU on the VM's host system for an accelerated experience, as is an option when using VMware's virtualization products or Oracle VirtualBox. This new initiative is just about being more efficient with less overhead in running LLVMpipe when the QXL DRM driver is loaded.

QXL is the virtual GPU for Red Hat's SPICE rendering protocol for use in their virtualization stack. Aside from the new DRM/KMS driver, for basic 2D with X.Org has been the basic QXL DDX driver for some time, but when it comes to QXL 3D there hasn't been much love... However, for a long time there have been real Gallium3D aspirations.

David Airlie of Red Hat wrote about this new QXL wrapper work in a mailing list thread for Mesa developers. "So we have this virtual GPU with nothing approaching a 3D engine, so we are currently running llvmpipe with drisw on it. However this incurs some overheads that now that we have a kernel driver, I believe we can remove. The main overheads are putimage for all rendering from a 3D compositor and getimage calls for all texture-from-pixmap operations. So implementing a dri2 qxl driver that wraps llvmpipe operations using the sw winsys wrapper, seemed like a good idea."

So while this is a step forward for improving the desktop virtualization experience, using LLVMpipe is still a long ways from the GPU-capable VirtualBox and VMware solutions. For the near future at least, VMware's proprietary products are the only serious solution for those needing Linux desktop 3D guest support.

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. AMD's New Athlon/Semprons Give Old Phenom CPUs A Big Run For The Money
  2. 13-Way Low-End GPU Comparison With AMD's AM1 Athlon
  3. ASUS AM1I-A: A Mini-ITX Board For Socketed Kabini APUs
  4. Mini-Box M350: A Simple, Affordable Mini-ITX Case
Latest Linux Articles
  1. How Much Video RAM Is Needed For Catalyst R3 Graphics?
  2. Ubuntu 12.04 LTS vs. 14.04 LTS Cloud Benchmarks
  3. Ubuntu 12.04.4 vs. 13.10 vs. 14.04 LTS Desktop Benchmarks
  4. AMD OpenCL Performance With AM1 Kabini APUs
Latest Linux News
  1. AmazonBasics External USB 2.0 DVD Writer For Linux
  2. TP-LINK TG-3468: A $12 Linux PCI-E Gigabit Network Adapter
  3. OpenELEC 4.0 Beta 6 Works On 4K Graphics, RPi ALSA
  4. Linux 3.15 Lands Some DRM Graphics Driver Fixes
  5. AMD Is Disabling DPM Support For RV770 GPUs
  6. ReactOS Working On A Community Windows OS
  7. Borderlands Is Being Considered For Linux
  8. Mesa 10.0 & 10.1 Stable Get Updated
  9. Getting Hit By The Variable Performance Of The Public Cloud
  10. Git 2.0 Test Releases Begin With Many Changes
  11. Wine 1.7.17 Works On Its Task Scheduler, C Run-Time
  12. The Improv ARM Board Still Isn't Shipping; Riding A Dead Horse?
Latest Forum Discussions
  1. The GNOME Foundation Is Running Short On Money
  2. Updated and Optimized Ubuntu Free Graphics Drivers
  3. Catalyst 14.3 Beta
  4. Suggestions about how to make a Radeon HD 7790 work decently?
  5. Radeon 8000M problematic on Linux?
  6. Linux Kernel Developers Fed Up With Ridiculous Bugs In Systemd
  7. After Jack Keane, RuseSoft will briing Ankh 3 to Linux through Desura
  8. Suspected PHP Proxy Issue