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The Experimental GCN 1.0 GPU Support Might Be Dropped From AMDGPU Linux Driver

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  • #21
    Not good. Free Software should make a difference when compared to windows in that the hardware does not become obsolete because software stops supporting it. Gen 1.0 cards are hell lot good consumer cards for anything else than playing most graphically demanding games. If support is dropped prematurely, then people could go as well to nvidia train, support would not be worse there, just a little bit more tricky.

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    • #22
      Originally posted by sandy8925 View Post

      IMHO just go for Intel Xe's dGPU when they launch a powerful enough version. It'll work out of the box from day 1, and all features will be supported and actually working (OpenCL, video decoding and encoding etc.).
      There are a few problems with this. First, there is no hardware available right now and anything better than a glorified integrated GPU on a PCIe-board might take until 2021. If this is an option, you do not actually need new hardware at all. Second, we do not know how well it will work. Yes, currently Intel's drivers are in good shape but they have gone through multiple iterations on OpenGL and OpenCL just like AMD's. At this point, nobody knows how well they will actually support current games for example. Third, their newest drivers don't support "not so legacy but legacy hardware" either. The future default driver (iris) requires broadwell or newer.

      TBH, the only real difference to AMD that I can make out is a) Intel has more manpower b) Intel started their driver work when nobody really cared too much about their GPU performance.

      Nonetheless, I feel for GCN 1.0 owners. Let's hope that the community will find a way to help them out.
      Last edited by GruenSein; 12-31-2019, 09:08 AM.

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      • #23
        I have my two main machines run pitcairn chips. The first thing i do on a new installation is to activate amdgpu for dxvk support. In fact, i recently replaced one of the cards when it broke with an identical second-hand from ebay. Dropping GCN 1.0 sounds like a terrible idea to me.

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        • #24

          Seems perfectly fair to me. If someone *really* cared about the new features, they'd have bought a new card by now.

          Otherwise they're justing whinging about not getting free stuff they don't even need.

          Anyway - who is to say the reason AMD don't support it is because there are hardware bugs that can't be worked around?

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          • #25
            With such a move they would discredit their hard earned reputation of driver support in the Linux community. I don't know how much ressources supporting GCN 1.0/1.1 costs in AMDGPU, or releasing the needed UVD firmware, but dropping support comes with a cost, too. The reactions here are quite telling (and as I also own a HD7850 in a legacy system, rightfully so!).

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            • #26
              Oh no

              When I bought my 7870 (used) I didn't expect to really need Vulkan, as newer titles that support Vulkan wouldn't work that great with this old GPU anyway.

              This has obviously changed with D9VK etc. and now I'm glad I can use Vulkan through amdgpu. So far it works without flaws. If they DO drop it, I hope the Ubuntu 20.04 kernel still supports amdgpu for GCN 1.0 and I guess I'll buy a "new" (used) GPU in late 2020 or 2021 anyway, and it will have stable amdgpu support.

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              • #27
                It is theoreticaly possible for RADV to support the older 'radeon' kernel driver, thus enabling Vulkan support for these older GPUs. It's just not done because it wasn't needed so far. They already work well with RadeonSI too so removing the support from the amdgpu kernel driver is actually not a disaster.

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                • #28
                  Originally posted by Venemo View Post
                  It is theoreticaly possible for RADV to support the older 'radeon' kernel driver, thus enabling Vulkan support for these older GPUs. It's just not done because it wasn't needed so far. They already work well with RadeonSI too so removing the support from the amdgpu kernel driver is actually not a disaster.
                  Does anybody know of a way to fund development for this? It's not the first time this solution has been mooted IIRC.

                  Let's be honest: In 3-5 years, the amount of GCN1.0 cards will have dropped drastically. FWIW, I own two HD7970s and I'd be happy with the RADV on radeon kernel module solution.

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                  • #29
                    Originally posted by OneTimeShot View Post
                    Seems perfectly fair to me. If someone *really* cared about the new features, they'd have bought a new card by now.

                    Otherwise they're justing whinging about not getting free stuff they don't even need.

                    Anyway - who is to say the reason AMD don't support it is because there are hardware bugs that can't be worked around?
                    These cards support Vulkan under Windows, it's reasonable for them to support Vulkan under Linux too.

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                    • #30
                      Well, I feel like it makes sense.
                      I have a 3 years old Godavari APU, which was officially released almost 4 years ago, and is a revamp based on Steamroller/Kaveri. This architecture was released almost 6 years ago, which was already GCN 1.1.
                      I use a Polaris/GCN 4.0 dGPU and will soon upgrade to Ryzen for the CPU bit. Hence I'm not really concerned (for now) but I mean, we're talking about 6-7-8 years material.

                      Almost anyone who is informed about amdgpu and getting the best out of it has already upgraded to a newer model. The rest don't care much. We're not talking about many people left with GCN 1st Gen cards. And there's still the radeon driver left.
                      Doesn't look like a steal or a lack of support to me. And I'm writing this from an 8 years old laptop with a pre-GCN Radeon mobile HD 6650M (Terascale 2/Northern Islands/Whistler Pro) with the radeon driver and it works absolutely fine.

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