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NVIDIA Proposes VDPAU For DRI2 Patches

NVIDIA

Published on 23 October 2009 10:11 PM EDT
Written by Michael Larabel in NVIDIA
10 Comments

NVIDIA's Video Decode and Presentation API for Unix -- or more commonly known as VDPAU -- has had phenomenal success since this video playback/decoding API was published last year and implemented within their proprietary graphics driver on Linux. VDPAU on NVIDIA hardware utilizes the PureVideo engine and is able to provide very impressive video playback capabilities even when running a very low-end CPU and GPU. VDPAU has been adopted in a variety of Linux multimedia applications from FFmpeg to XBMC to MythTV.

With this open API and NVIDIA's implementation of it working out well, other Linux drivers are looking to pick-up VDPAU support too -- especially considering its adoption and is designed around modern HD video playback needs. Intel has been considering VDPAU support, S3 Graphics supposedly supports it with their Chrome 500 driver, and we could seem some form of VDPAU surface within Gallium3D in the future. There is also a VDPAU back-end to VA-API.

In an effort to help the adoption of VDPAU by those outside of NVIDIA, last month they published a standalone VDPAU library that was distributed independently of their proprietary Linux graphics driver. This afternoon, NVIDIA's Aaron Plattner has now put in a pull request of a Git tree that would allow DRI2 drivers to support VDPAU by adding name registration support to the X server for this video API. These patches plus others submitted today allow allow choosing the VDPAU back-end implementation on a per-screen basis, in the event of multiple VDPAU-supportive drivers, so that libvdpau knows actually what is being used.

This isn't particularly exciting news today, but will allow for a better VDPAU ecosystem outside of just NVIDIA's binary driver. The X Server pull request of DRI2-VDPAU can be found on the xorg-devel mailing list.

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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