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AMD's Radeon DDX Enables Hawaii Acceleration By Default

AMD

Published on 12 August 2014 12:00 PM EDT
Written by Michael Larabel in AMD
1 Comment

Assuming the necessary support requirements are in place, the xf86-video-ati driver is finally enabling hardware acceleration by default for the AMD Radeon R9 290 "Hawaii" graphics cards.

We've long been monitoring the AMD Hawaii Linux support situation. AMD did provide same-day Catalyst Linux support for the R9 290 but took a while to get cleaned up. However, on the open-source side, it wasn't until recently that the R9 290 open-source support got into shape with working 2D/3D hardware acceleration.

AMD's Radeon DDX Enables Hawaii Acceleration By Default


Hawaii GPU acceleration should be working with the latest open-source code but users have reported that re-clocking isn't being done properly yet (at least not by default) and there still may be some other issues to work out along with overall optimizations still being sought after with the RadeonSI Gallium3D driver.

Getting R9 290 "Hawaii" series hardware to work requires using the newest DRM found in the Linux 3.17 kernel. Additionally, the updated Hawaii microcode files need to be present for the acceleration to work. The latest microcode/firmware files can be downloaded from this directory. Additionally, for good measure you should also be running the very latest Mesa Git code for the best RadeonSI support (currently at Mesa 10.3-devel). Up to now users of the high-end AMD hardware have also needed to set the Accel option in the xorg.conf to true for enabling the hardware acceleration when meeting the other requirements.

As of this Git commit today, Hawaii acceleration support is being enabled by default with xf86-video-ati assuming the kernel reports the updated DRM/microcode state. This default change will be present in the upcoming xf86-video-ati 7.5.0 release.

Now that the Linux 3.17 merge window is settling down with the Hawaii support, I'll be out with Radeon R9 290 Linux benchmarks of the open-source driver compared to Catalyst in the near future.

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 .
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