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AMD Releases R600/700 3D Documentation

AMD

Published on 26 January 2009 07:55 PM EST
Written by Michael Larabel in AMD
76 Comments

In late December, AMD had released open-source R600/700 code used to begin supporting 2D and 3D acceleration for the latest ATI graphics processors under Linux using an open-source stack. This code in its initial form just provided basic but fast 2D acceleration and on the 3D side was only able to draw triangles. This month an AMD Video BIOS Disassembler was released by Novell, which is one of AMD's open-source partners. This evening, however, AMD has released its R600 3D specifications to the general public.

When AMD pushed out its R600/700 3D code, we shared that AMD would quickly be releasing these specifications, but they didn't clear final review prior to the holidays. The R600 3D register guide is 166 pages long and covers R600 shader instructions, R700 shader instructions, shader textures, and various other registers needed to program a 3D graphics driver. This register guide is targeted solely for driver developers and is not anything for end-users. If you are interested in the R600/700 3D register guide, it can be downloaded at X.Org.

This register information was what AMD and Novell had used to write the initial 2D/3D open-source code, so this guide should be fairly complete and allow their new open-source stack to grow. Within a few months we should see a modest open-source R600/700 3D driver beginning to appear in the different desktop Linux distributions.

For more information on the current AMD Linux situation check out our other display driver articles or stop by the Phoronix Forums for the latest discussions.

We are told by AMD that soon they will also be releasing a new programming guide.

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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