Thanks in part to interesting news with the Linux 3.12 and other interesting open-source advancements, and namely some nice advertising campaigns this month for motivation and an increase in Phoronix Premium subscriptions and tips, there was more than one featured-length article per day I wrote on top of over 260 news articles that were single-handedly written by myself.
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With the public service announcement out of the way, the most popular content this month on Phoronix included:
Here's Why Radeon Graphics Are Faster On Linux 3.12
Yesterday I published benchmarks showing the AMD Radeon graphics being much faster on Linux 3.12. Ten graphics cards were benchmarked and many of them were showing rather remarkable OpenGL frame-rate performance improvements when moving from the Linux 3.11 to Linux 3.12 Git kernel. This large comparison came after benchmarks I did this weekend on a single Radeon HD graphics card showed the Linux 3.12 kernel delivering the best performance of any recent kernel release. The only thing was, this AMD Radeon performance improvement baffled the upstream developers. The AMD developers were taken off-guard and didn't have an explanation why the Linux 3.12 kernel performance is faster... Now thanks to automated testing and bisecting by the Phoronix Test Suite, I have an answer.
The AMD Radeon Performance Is Incredible On Linux 3.12
Over the weekend I released benchmarks showing the Linux 3.12 kernel bringing big AMD Radeon performance improvements. Those benchmarks of a Radeon HD 4000 series GPU showed the Linux 3.12 kernel bringing major performance improvements over Linux 3.11 and prior. Some games improved with just low double-digit gains while other Linux games were nearly 90% faster! Interestingly, the AMD Radeon Linux developers were even surprised by these findings. After carrying out additional tests throughout the weekend, I can confirm these truly incredible performance improvements on other hardware. In this article are results from ten different AMD Radeon graphics cards.
Ubuntu Linux Gaming Performance Mostly On Par With Windows 8.1
Given the recent release of Microsoft Windows 8.1, at Phoronix we took 13 different AMD Radeon and NVIDIA GeForce graphics cards and compared the performance between Ubuntu Linux and Windows 8.1 with the same hardware and set of OpenGL games/benchmarks. For AMD and NVIDIA graphics cards with their official drivers, the performance is largely similar between the competing desktop operating systems but there are some performance exceptions.
Linux 3.12 Brings Big AMD Radeon Improvements
The Linux 3.12 kernel when released in the coming weeks will bring a number of new features and improvements to AMD Radeon graphics cards, including faster performance. For many Linux games tested the Radeon Gallium3D OpenGL frame-rates were making double-digit gains through upgrading the Linux kernel.
16-Way Graphics Card Comparison On Open-Source Linux
To get October off to a good start, in this article are benchmark results of sixteen Intel HD, AMD Radeon, and NVIDIA GeForce graphics processors all being tested from the latest open-source Linux graphics driver stack. The test setup is powered by the Linux 3.12 development kernel and the Mesa 9.3.0-devel OpenGL drivers.
Linux 3.12 Kernel To Bring Faster File-Systems
With the Linux 3.12 kernel due for release in several weeks time but all major changes behind us now, here are some file-system tests from this forthcoming kernel update. Tested Linux file-systems for this Phoronix article include EXT4, Btrfs, XFS, and F2FS. From these results, there are multiple instances of these file-systems running measurably faster than Linux 3.11.
AMD Radeon R9 270X On Linux
Earlier this month AMD announced the R9 series graphics cards that included the $200 Radeon R9 270X offering based upon the "Curacao XT" graphics core. This Volcanic Islands graphics card in Microsoft Windows benchmarks has been faster than a Radeon HD 7870, but today we have the first Linux test results and compatibility information available. This article serves as our first Linux review of the AMD R9 270X -- or any Rx 200 series graphics card for that matter -- in the form of the Gigabyte Radeon R9 270X 2GB.
Linux OpenGL: Ubuntu 13.04/13.10 vs. Fedora 19/20
Under the microscope this Saturday morning are benchmark results comparing the Intel Haswell graphics performance of Ubuntu 13.04, Ubuntu 13.10 Beta, Fedora 19, and Fedora 20 Alpha. The System76 Galago UltraPro with Intel Iris Pro 5200 graphics was used to see how these four Linux distribution releases compare in their open-source OpenGL graphics/gaming performance.
The most popular news was:
AMD Intentionally Crippled Their HDMI Adapters
For some AMD Radeon graphics cards when using the Catalyst driver, the HDMI audio support isn't enabled unless using the simple DVI to HDMI adapter included with the graphics card itself... If you use another DVI-to-HDMI adapter, it won't work with Catalyst. AMD intentionally implemented checks within their closed-source driver to prevent other adapters from being used, even though they will work just fine.
Mozilla Pushes "Shumway" Flash Into Firefox
Mozilla has pushed their open-source "Shumway" Flash/SWF player into the latest Firefox nightly builds.
AMD Posts A Horde Of New 3D GPU Documentation
While AMD has published open-source Radeon GPU driver code for modern graphics processors up through the latest Sea Islands parts, they have fallen behind on publishing 3D GPU programming specifications and programming guides for the more modern hardware. Fortunately, they have now caught up.
Debian To Switch To Systemd Or Upstart
Debian developers have been in a very polarized discussion recently about replacing their default SysVinit system with a more modern init system; namely, Debian developers are evaluating whether to use systemd or Upstart.
NVIDIA Drops Linux Driver Feature Not Found On Windows
While the proprietary NVIDIA Windows driver has features not found in the NVIDIA Linux driver, it seems the company will not support Linux-only hardware driver features. At least one feature has been removed from the NVIDIA Linux driver over "feature parity between Windows and Linux."
Hi10P Support Proposed For VDPAU
Open-source developers are hoping to be able to introduce Hi10P support to NVIDIA's Video Decode and Presentation API for Unix (VDPAU) library.
Ubuntu 14.04 Codename Revealed, Mir Haters Attacked
Mark Shuttleworth has revealed the codename of the Ubuntu 14.04 LTS release while also having some choice words about those criticizing Canonical's Mir Display Server, and comparing them to an Open Source Tea Party.
NFTables IPTables-Replacement Queued For Linux 3.13
NFTables is a new firewall subsystem / packet filtering engine for the Linux kernel that is poised to replace iptables. NFTables has been in development for several years by the upstream author of Netfilter. This new nftables system is set to be merged now into the Linux 3.13 kernel.
Happy Halloween and thanks again to new Phoronix Premium subscribers this month, PayPal donors, and site advertisers.