Tungsten Creates New VIA 3D Stack
Written by Michael Larabel in VIA on 7 January 2009 at 06:55 AM EST. 5 Comments
Thomas Hellström of Tungsten Graphics is preparing to release a new DRM module and Mesa 3D driver that supports some of VIA's older hardware -- and eventually their newest graphics processors.

This work done by Thomas includes a memory manager similar to the Graphics Execution Manager and a stable AGP command submission
mechanism. This new code will also allow for kernel mode-setting on VIA hardware in the future.

The new Mesa component features OpenGL 1.3 support, accelerated pixel operations and pixel
buffer objects, S3TC compression, accelerated GL_EXT frame buffer objects, better stability, and multi-thread / multi-context operation support.


The hardware supported by this new VIA 3D code is the CX700 and older Unichrome IGPs. Support for the VIA Chrome 9 series though is expected and Thomas intends to incorporate their recently released DRM.

Initial feedback from VIA's open-source liaison, Harald Welte, is that he will recommend VIA move to this new code-base created by Tungsten Graphics.

The code hasn't been released yet due to copyright issues, but it's expected the DRM and Mesa code will be pushed out soon under the OpenChrome name. The thread discussing this new VIA open-source work can be read on the OpenChrome mailing list.
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Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com 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 OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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