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ATI R600/700 OSS 3D Driver Reaches Gears Milestone
Great work, this is an exciting time! My first game of Quake3 on free drivers!
Which version of quake3 have you tried? In my case, 1.32c (binary) restarts X randomly when approaching a portal (and alsa doesn't work), otherwise it works great. With 1.34-rc3 (compiled) I get alsa sound, but it is unplayable (triangles everywhere!).
For me, they are surprisingly stable. This is all still preliminary, experimental, and unreleased stuff, but it rarely crashes for me.
2D is rock solid. 3D hangs on a couple of things for me (KWin with OpenGL effects and foobillard), and a couple of things don't work (supertuxkart). But the things that work, work with no problems.
The major remaining bug is the graphical corruption in games like OpenArena. When using direct rendering, it is unplayable, along with some other geometrically more complex games. Still, it doesn't crash, at least for me.
The workaround is to run these games indirectly. Then they render perfectly, but do crash the X server from time to time. OpenArena crashes (kills X, basically) every time you win a level, for example. It works fine until then.
So I guess that there are two major bugs here, the corruption in the direct rendering mode, and the X crashes in the indirect mode. When they are finished, these things will be usable for daily work, and it will be bug-hunting time. The devs have been hunting the corruption one for the last few days, and there are first commits which considerably improve things. I think the bug is slightly better understood now, and with some luck, the devs will figure out how to fix it soon.
I don't know about the comparison to catalyst, as I've never run it. I imagine it's definitely inferior at this time, and it doesn't offer all the features (OpenGL 2+ is only coming with the KMS/GEM/DRI2/Gallium stack, for example).
EDIT: This is my understanding of the situation as an interested observer who runs the latest drivers from git and reads the IRC channel. I'm sure that the devs will be able to explain things in more detail.