For those wondering what AMD's open-source Linux graphics driver developers are likely working on...
After a belated Catalyst 11.10 release, this month's proprietary Catalyst Linux driver for ATI/AMD Radeon and FirePro graphics cards is now available. The Catalyst 11.11 driver does bring some critical changes.
In recent weeks there have been a lot of AMD Linux benchmarks of the latest-generation Bulldozer processor, namely the eight-core FX-8150. The latest unique look at the first-generation Bulldozer CPU under Linux is the KVM virtualization performance.
By now many of you have likely heard that AMD is laying off around 10% of its workforce by next year in a restructuring attempt to lower its operating costs, but will their open-source and Linux efforts be hampered by this move?
The last time there was an official release of the xf86-video-ati DDX driver was back in May, but this morning Michel Dänzer has announced a new version.
Catalyst 11.10 was released yesterday for Linux and Windows platforms. Many Linux users are pleased by this driver update as can be seen from the forums, but Catalyst 11.12 is set to improve the Radeon binary blob situation even more.
On the last day of the month, AMD has released Catalyst 11.10 as their October 2011 proprietary Linux driver update.
Besides LLVM 3.0 (with an adjoining Clang 3.0 release) and GCC 4.7 coming up soon, another open-source compiler soon to be releasing is Open64 5.0, the compiler of choice by AMD.
Here's some interesting work that provides support support for multiple rings to the open-source Radeon driver for supporting multiple compute rings, a-sync DMA engines, and UVD. Yes, for video decoding, but this is just prep work and there is still no UVD specifications or code.
Earlier this month I wrote about the AMD porting their open-source Linux graphics driver to Windows EC7. Here's a few details that were learned in the past two weeks.
The classic Mesa Radeon (R300/R600) drivers that provide open-source OpenGL support on Linux instead of the Gallium3D alternatives are likely to be dropped in the coming days.
If you're using any R300/400/500 GPU with the Gallium3D R300 driver, there's some improvements coming up for you in the KDE KWin compositing window manager.
On Friday some benchmarks of the AMD FX-8150 Bulldozer on Linux were shared, thanks to an early adopter running some benchmarks under Gentoo and uploading them to OpenBenchmarking.org. But there's more to come.
The R500 texture semaphores work, the feature I wrote about and tested earlier this month, has been merged to master. This feature in the R300 Gallium3D open-source driver can provide some impressive performance improvements.
Here's the first Linux benchmarks of AMD's FX-Series Bulldozer desktop CPUs that launched on Tuesday. Specifically, it's Gentoo Linux performance results for an AMD FX-8150 Bulldozer.
AMD has finally lifted the lid on their new FX-Series "Bulldozer" desktop CPUs, but how well do they work under Linux?
Vadim Girlin, an independent contributor to Mesa, has announced some shader optimization work he has done to the R600 Gallium3D driver for the Radeon HD 5000 "Evergreen" series.
There's a new AMD Linux driver blob available for those that haven't yet fetched it, but it's not particularly exciting, unless you're using GNOME3.
It will be many, many weeks before AMD supports "Clover" for their Radeon GPUs on the open-source Linux DRM / Gallium3D stack. The support they're aiming for is the Radeon HD 5000 "Evergreen" series and newer, but this Clover state tracker to support OpenCL is still a ways out for those with ATI/AMD GPUs. A whiteboard drawing of the Radeon Clover TODO list was shown at XDC2011 Chicago by John Bridgman.
Tom Stellard, the former Google Summer of Code student who worked on R300 GLSL improvements and a new register allocator, is now working for AMD and his work is focused on bringing up open-source OpenCL / GPGPU support in the Radeon Linux driver.
It was four years ago, on the 6th of September 2007, that I exclusively broke the news on AMD's open-source strategy that would end up greatly changing the open-source Linux graphics driver landscape.
Yesterday I mentioned that, thanks to new patches on the Mesa mailing list, it's now possible to use the R600 Gallium3D driver with the Xorg state tracker. This means that for all modern ATI/AMD Radeon GPUs (anything newer than the Radeon HD 2000 series), the Xorg state tracker can be used for EXA and X-Video/XvMC acceleration rather than relying upon any DDX driver. The xf86-video-ati driver can be tossed away, while the R300 Gallium3D driver (supporting up through the Radeon X1000 GPUs) has already supported this state tracker, but how well does it work?
While the ATI/AMD R300 Gallium3D driver has long worked with the Xorg state tracker, for providing EXA and X-Video acceleration atop this next-generation Mesa driver architecture, the R600 Gallium3D driver that supports all modern Radeon GPUs now works with the Xorg state tracker too.
While LinuxCon 2011 just started in Vancouver, Canada, the AMD developers over in Toronto have released their monthly Catalyst Linux driver update. Catalyst 11.8 Linux driver is now available for those who want this binary blob for Radeon/FirePro graphics processors.
Last month when testing the AMD Radeon HD 6550D graphics as found on the AMD Fusion A8-3850 APU I mentioned the latest Git code (Linux kernel / Mesa / DDX) was broken for this Llano-generation APU while the proprietary Catalyst driver had "just worked" under Linux. Here's an update where the open-source driver support is now at today.
While Mesa won't have OpenGL 4.2 support for some time, NVIDIA released an OpenGL 4.2 preview driver on Monday as soon as the Khronos Group had published the new specification. AMD yesterday has now released a beta Linux driver (of their Catalyst blob, nothing to do with open-source) that provides OpenGL 4.2 support.
Marek Olšák, one of the most prolific open-source graphics driver developers that isn't backed by any corporation, has made another major improvement to the open-source ATI/AMD "R600" Gallium3D driver. This student developer has reworked the Radeon winsys back-end, which can cause major performance improvements.
As has been pointed out in the forums, the AMD Catalyst 11.7 Linux driver for Radeon and FirePro graphics hardware has been released this morning. What new features does this proprietary driver bring?
Up to this point the ATI "R300g" driver that provides Gallium3D support for Radeon GPUs up through the Radeon X1000 (R500) series has depended upon files from the "R300c" classic Mesa DRI driver when being compiled. In particular, the R300c shader compiler and its nearly 20,000 lines of code. The R300c compiler has now been copied over directly to live separately within the R300g driver, which means the classic R300 driver can be left to fade off and die.
gDEBugger, a program developed by Graphic Remedy for debugging, profiling, and analyzing OpenGL (and OpenCL) applications, was a very useful tool for graphics developer. gDEBugger worked with GPUs from all major vendors, is capable of locating graphics pipeline performance bottlenecks, allowed dynamically editing GLSL shaders in real-time, and had many other capabilities. This powerful utility was even made free of charge to Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux users. Graphic Remedy was acquired by AMD last month and already the non-Windows users have been shafted with their OS support being dropped.
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