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Intel Open-Sources LLVM Graphics Compiler, Compute Runtime With OpenCL 2.1+

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  • #21
    Originally posted by AdamCetnerowski View Post

    Thank you! I co-manage the team that develops the NEO OpenCL driver.
    Any chance you could share some more details about Intel's motivation for the new driver? For example why did you choose to start a new project instead of evolving Beignet? Also 01.org mentions that "Neo is a cross-platform driver". How "cross-platform" is that? Linux and Android or also Windows/Mac? Was the main plan to get rid of the closed source Android driver?

    Maybe you can also share Intel's expectation of what the new OpenCL driver should achieve in terms of functionality? Are you aware of any plans to push the driver to specific distros? Should users of older hardware continue to use Beignet or even use it in parallel? What's the current state of the code? Should it run the most common workloads or just specific selected kernels?

    Basically it would be nice to see someone from Intel giving a conference presentation about the new driver. Or maybe a LWN article. Of course I understand if you don't have time/are not the right person to answer these questions but I'm curious so I wanted to give it a try :-)

    Update: I just read some of Adam's comments on github so it seems like they are using the same code also for Windows :-) As far as I understand the Neo code already is used on Windows which means - I guess - that it should be release-quality.
    Last edited by schwarzman; 19 February 2018, 11:32 AM.

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    • #22
      Originally posted by schwarzman View Post

      (...)
      Sorry for the delayed response - I got caught up in responding on github and missed this one.

      I'd like to thank you and others for your questions. It's very invigorating to work directly with the community and me and my colleagues will do our best to answer them (whenever we can).

      As you noticed, we use the same codebase for both Linux and Windows - and NEO is shipping in the unified graphics driver for Windows at production quality. The Linux driver is close to production quality.

      For Broadwell (Gen8) and newer platforms, we recommend using NEO as actively developed and maintained driver. Beignet will continue to be the solution for older platforms as NEO will not be ported to older hardware.

      Speaking a bit to the motivation: Intel wanted to avoid offering two OpenCL drivers (Beignet, "Classic") with similar, but not identical drivers. To this end, we decided on developing a new open source driver, which would support Windows, Linux, and (with the right tool-chain) Android. One that would provide the superset of functionality provided by the two earlier drivers. This gives us a consistent feature set across all supported OSes and the ability to deliver new features more rapidly.

      As to the distros - please give us some time, to catch our breath

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      • #23
        Originally posted by AdamCetnerowski View Post
        Sorry for the delayed response - I got caught up in responding on github and missed this one.
        Thank you for your answer - actually I completely missed it as well but I really appreciate Intel's approach :-)

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        • #24
          Having upgraded a bunch of machines to i7-8700’s I am rather disappointed there is no usable OpenCL for them. Any chance Beignet 1.4 could be pushed through the repos while Neo is sorted out?

          I am running Debian. The latest they have is Beignet 1.32 which doesn’t support Coffee Lake.

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          • #25
            Originally posted by AdamCetnerowski View Post

            As to the distros - please give us some time, to catch our breath
            As the owner of 6 new i7-8700’s I am rather disappointed that there is no OpenCL for them. The latest Beignet in Debian is 1.32 and it doesn’t support Coffee Lake. Is there any chance Beignet 1.4 could be pushed through while we wait for Neo to hit the various distros?

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