VIA Chrome 9 Hardware Documentation Released
Written by Michael Larabel in VIA on 19 January 2011 at 04:01 PM EST. 20 Comments
While it was just a couple weeks ago that a VIA Technologies representative had admitted to me their Linux / open-source strategy is basically dead (and they had failed in delivering their Linux goals for 2010), it seems that today the first Chrome 9 (VIA VX900 IGP) documentation has been released. It appears to originate from VIA Technologies but this public release is coming to the community through the OpenChrome driver project. This documentation covers the 2D, 3D, and video engines for these integrated graphics processors.

Part 1 of the Open Graphics Programming Manual covers the Chrome9 HD Graphics Processor covers the main graphics core and 2D engine. It is 151 pages long and can be found hosted on the server (PDF).

Part 2 is 182 pages and it covers the 3D and video portions of the chipset. It can be found in this PDF.

It's still being analyzed how extensive this documentation is, but on quick glance it appears to covers most of the Chrome 9 registers. Both sets of documents are available under the Creative Commons.

The Chrome 9 hardware isn't exactly new and its open-source support has lagged behind, but due to the lack of skilled manpower working on VIA drivers, the situation may not quickly change (especially when the OpenChrome developers have likely had this documentation already under NDA with VIA Technologies). The VX900 documents complement VIA's previous data dumps for their CX700, VX800, and VX855.

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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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