Composition Bypass Support Lands To Speed Up Mir
Written by Michael Larabel in Ubuntu on 29 August 2013 at 08:23 AM EDT. 32 Comments
Composition bypass support for Mir has landed, which is one of the performance critical features for Mir. Composition bypass can substantially improve the performance of OpenGL games running on XMir now when they are being run in full-screen mode.

We have talked about Mir's support (or there the lack of) composition bypass in the past, but with today being the Ubuntu 13.10 feature freeze, the support was finally committed to its mainline code-base. The merge to trunk happened with this commit. When fullscreen games/applications are run, Mir can ignore compositioning and render directly to the display hardware.

Intel's hardware/driver is best supported with Mir right now (and what most of their developers are using) while the Radeon support is in good shape and the Nouveau driver is in good shape to a lesser extent. No composition bypass support has yet to land for Mir on Android.

For more details on the performance work going on for Mir, read this lengthy blog post by Thomas Voß. In that post the Canonical engineer covers the performance work going on for Mir, their performance testing, etc. Most of their benchmarking right now is being powered by the Phoronix Test Suite.

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Michael Larabel is the principal author of 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 automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via

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