NVIDIA Makes Modest Update With 190.xx Linux Driver
Written by Michael Larabel in NVIDIA on 21 July 2009 at 07:54 PM EDT. 15 Comments
Late last month there was a private beta driver from NVIDIA for the 190.xx Linux driver series that was leaked onto the Internet. There was no complete change-log with this leak, but we have a change-log now as NVIDIA this afternoon released its first public beta driver. The NVIDIA 190.16 Beta driver was released for Linux as their first public beta release in this forthcoming software series.

GLX protocol support was added for the following OpenGL extensions in the NVIDIA 190.xx series: GL_ARB_draw_buffers, GL_EXT_Cg_shader, GL_EXT_gpu_program_parameters, GL_NV_fragment_program, GL_NV_gpu_program4, GL_NV_register_combiners, GL_NV_vertex_program1_1, and GL_NV_vertex_program2. These were not the only OpenGL extensions with GLX support added, but there is quite a few unofficial ones too: GL_ARB_geometry_shader4, GL_ARB_shader_objects, GL_ARB_texture_buffer_object, GL_ARB_vertex_buffer_object, GL_ARB_vertex_shader, GL_EXT_bindable_uniform, GL_EXT_compiled_vertex_array, GL_EXT_geometry_shader4, GL_EXT_gpu_shader4, GL_EXT_texture_buffer_object, GL_NV_geometry_program4, GL_NV_vertex_program, GL_NV_parameter_buffer_object, and GL_NV_vertex_program4.

Introduced in the NVIDIA 180.xx series was VDPAU, which is a wonderful video acceleration API for Linux, and in the 190.xx series it has matured a bit more. VDPAU is frequently tuned by NVIDIA with almost each new release it seems, and this time around there is enhanced support for handling corrupted/invalid H.264 bit-streams, enhanced detection of the GPU's video decode capabilities, and a fix for ghosting/flashing issues when decoding H.264, plus a few other VDPAU related fixes. In the NVIDIA 190.16 Beta are also a number of other fixes outside of the VDPAU realm.

OpenCL support is not mentioned in the change-log for the NVIDIA 190.16 Beta Linux driver, even though NVIDIA has its OpenCL driver ready. The full change-log and download links for this proprietary NVIDIA Linux driver update can be found on the Phoronix Forums.
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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 Twitter or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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