Nouveau Interface Breaks, Updates Needed
Written by Michael Larabel in Nouveau on 16 February 2010 at 02:05 PM EST. 9 Comments
While Nouveau's initial DRM (Direct Rendering Manager) code has landed in the Linux 2.6.33 kernel, changes made today to the Nouveau driver stack will cause grief for some users. The Nouveau user-space driver code will now not work with the DRM found in the Linux 2.6.33 kernel, which isn't even officially released yet but will be in a week or two.

The user-space driver interface for the Nouveau driver has been changed (with a version bump to 0.0.16). The DRM code as well as libdrm needs to be updated against the latest Git head for it to work with the xf86-video-nouveau driver Git code. Multiple ioctls have been removed from the Nouveau driver and superseded by a new ioctl that allows multiple push buffers to be submitted and relocations to be applied on any buffer. There were also ioctls removed that were just needed for user-space mode-setting, since non-KMS support is being dropped. Thankfully the Nouveau driver is considered a staging driver in the Linux 2.6.33 kernel. The updated DRM for Nouveau should be pulled with the Linux 2.6.34 kernel.

The commit that changes the Nouveau interface and bumps the version can be found in this Git commit.

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Michael Larabel is the principal author of 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 automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via

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