1. Computers
  2. Display Drivers
  3. Graphics Cards
  4. Memory
  5. Motherboards
  6. Processors
  7. Software
  8. Storage
  9. Operating Systems


Facebook RSS Twitter Twitter Google Plus


Phoronix Test Suite

OpenBenchmarking.org

Nouveau's Gallium3D Driver Gets Some Love Too

Nouveau

Published on 21 August 2010 04:38 PM EDT
Written by Michael Larabel in Nouveau
7 Comments

Yesterday was an exciting day for those Linux users interested in AMD's open-source ATI driver work with the release of the Radeon HD 5000 series 2D/3D driver, Radeon HD 6000 series support getting underway, and many ATI R600 Gallium3D driver improvements over the past few days. If though you are a NVIDIA customer interested in open-source support, there's great news for you today with the Nouveau driver that greatly improves the Gallium3D support.

Over the past few hours there's been quite a number (nearly 50 at the moment) commits to the mainline Mesa code-base by Luca Barbieri, a Nouveau community developer, that brings many changes with thousands of lines of code touched for the NVFX Gallium3D hardware driver. Below are some of the highlights of new code that was committed to Mesa's Git repository this afternoon and will be present in the next Mesa 7.9 release.

- A new Gallium3D-independent 2D engine with complete support for all operations involving swizzles and 3D-swizzled surfaces. Since this code is independent of the Gallium3D API, it can be reused within the classic Mesa DRI Nouveau driver that supports the vintage fixed-function and pre-shader-happy NVIDIA hardware. It could also be used within the xf86-video-nouveau DDX driver too, if so desired. This new module has also been hooked-up to use the NVIDIA GPU's 3D engine by reusing the blitter module originally created for the ATI R300 Gallium3D driver.

- Rewritten mip-tree layout code and support for compressed texture transfers.

- The draw and buffer code for NVFX has been completely rewritten. With this rewrite, a copy of buffers is now kept in the system memory in order to improve performance. The drawing code is also smarter in the sense it tries to figure out the most performance-efficient way to draw a given path. There's also now support for all vertex formats that are supported by the hardware, support for the base vertex, support for instancing, and other improvements.

- The NVFX driver now exposes GLSL (GL Shading Language) as being supported. At the time of this commit there still was GLSL control flow support lacking. A few minutes later, however, support for fragment program and vertex program control flows was added.

- Support for new TGSI op-codes: NOP, TRUNC, DP2, SSG, TXL, CMP. There's tweaks and enhancements to others too.

- Re-factored sampling code with added support for sRGB textures and more code unification between different generations of NVIDIA GPUs.

- The shader assembler has been re-factored.

- For debugging purposes there is now the ability to dump shaders in TGSI representation as well as native code.

- GPU hard lock-up fixes, optimized fragment texture format look-up, support for the OpenGL GL_ARB_texture_rectangle extension, and many other changes.

The Mesa Git log can be found on this page. It's too bad there's no magical support for the GeForce GTX 400 series or major improvements to the NV50 Gallium3D driver for other newer NVIDIA GeForce hardware, but the Nouveau developers certainly are doing a nice job with the added challenge they have of reverse-engineering NVIDIA's blob.

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 .
Latest Linux Hardware Reviews
  1. Acer B286HK: A 28-inch UHD LED 4K Monitor For As Low As $350
  2. Intel Xeon E5-1680 v3 & E5-2687W v3 Compared To The Core i7 5960X On Linux
  3. Intel 120GB 530 Series SSD Linux Performance
  4. Btrfs/EXT4/XFS/F2FS RAID 0/1/5/6/10 Linux Benchmarks On Four SSDs
Latest Linux Articles
  1. Mesa Git Yields Performance Improvements For Newer AMD GPUs
  2. Apple OS X 10.10 vs. Ubuntu 14.10 Performance
  3. Mesa 10.5-devel Brings Some Intel Haswell HD Graphics Changes Over Mesa 10.3
  4. NVIDIA vs. Nouveau Drivers With Linux 3.18 + Mesa 10.4-devel
Latest Linux News
  1. NVIDIA Posts Tegra Gallium3D Patch For K1+ Support
  2. Ubuntu 14.10 MacBook Air Tests With Linux 3.18, Mesa 10.5
  3. AMD Richland APU Support Added To Coreboot
  4. 2014 Holiday Shopping Reminder, Happy Thanksgiving
  5. Python 3 Support Added To The GNOME Shell
  6. ReactOS Lands Its New Explorer Shell
  7. Weston's IVI Shell Sees New Version
  8. IMP Launches As Another Open-Source Computer Attempt
  9. Git 2.2.0 Released With 550+ Changes
  10. GNOME 3.15.2 Released
Latest Forum Discussions
  1. Updated and Optimized Ubuntu Free Graphics Drivers
  2. Hurrican SDL Port
  3. Roadmap to Catalyst 14.10 ?
  4. how to configure module phoromatic ?
  5. PulseAudio 6.0 Is Coming & Other Linux Audio Plans For The Future
  6. Debian Developer Resigns From The Systemd Maintainership Team
  7. Cant get working Kaveri APU - A10-7850k
  8. Script for Fan Speed Control