VIA Soon To Release Its DRM-Using 2D Driver
Written by Michael Larabel in VIA on 12 August 2009 at 08:50 AM EDT. 2 Comments
Back in June, VIA Technologies rolled out its Chrome 9 DRM (for a second time) in hopes of pushing it into the mainline Linux kernel. At that time, VIA's DRM was again rejected and it led to a discussion over partial open-source drivers since the only user of this interface was their binary-only driver.

In that discussion back then, VIA's Bruce Chang shared that they had a new 2D driver in the works and that it would utilize this DRM. The driver was supposedly coming soon, even though they had been working with and using the OpenChrome driver before and even announced their love affair.

This morning Bruce has written on the dri-devel list that they should soon be releasing this new 2D driver. Bruce is hoping that this 2D driver's source-code will be released in about two weeks. Right now the driver is in the hands of a few community testers for feedback, but they are hoping that the driver will be released very soon unless any new issues are found.

Having a new open-source 2D driver for VIA graphics hardware will be good, but still doesn't mean we will see their DRM going into the mainline kernel. There is still the 3D portion of their (undocumented) DRM interface that isn't used by any open-source drivers nor even any simple tests. VIA has said they will not be providing any open-source 3D driver for the Chrome 9 series hardware. They would like the community to come up with a 3D driver, but they haven't released enough documentation yet, and no developers really seem interested at this time.
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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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