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This is wrong. I switched from Nvidia to AMD because of OSS drivers, as did many other people.
Sure, every generalization has its exceptions, and I thought about mentioning this one specifically given the audience but decided not to. Some people switched to AMD to promote an open-source ideology, but imo they rewarded the company too early. AMD gives docs, which are helpful, but they don't really support open-source stuff, it's nearly always broken or way behind, and their proprietary driver is too, so that leaves most AMD/ATI users in a bad spot. They dumped docs in desperation during hard times hoping to buy loyalty from open-source purists without dedicating many resources to the thing or really supporting the OSS ecosystem, and I don't think that's the right behavior to encourage or reward. We want real support or real help, not lip service.
While there are some purists that support AMD for its decision to release docs, my experience has been that most Linux users still push nvidia all day long for practical use, because nvidia keeps their driver in a working state and is consistently adding new, useful features and fixes. AMD's proprietary driver, which is supposedly their supported Linux product, is generally broken for several months out of the year as we await compatibility fixes for the new X server, and we don't even need to mention the instability or lacking featuresets for that to be marked an instant fail by AMD. There are the open drivers, but the open drivers have much worse performance and many fewer advanced features in general (though they also generally have some nice other features that the proprietary drivers lack, like KMS, the featureset is not geared toward utilizing a discrete GPU to its ability).
This has never happened to me on nvidia; as soon as a new X is stable, there is at least a public beta release, usually shortly thereafter turned stable if not stable previously, that supports the new server. nouveau may be a harder slodge than ati due to lack of docs, but at least there is well-supported and useful alternative.
openhardware doesn't matter that much (at least for the end user)
What would seem like a "feasible" thing to do is, for a manufacturer, to move its driver development to G3D on all operating systems (it is portable afaik). But i don't thing none of the big 3 (nv, ati, intel) are going to do it (or can ) .
I agree, but what I say is that as Open Software pushes propietary OSs, a good openhardware would push the big 3
If you want you can play around with R600_ENABLE_S3TC. As I describe you might be lucky and it works for the texture base levels (my tests were on a mobile R600 chip).
If you're not so lucky (I also did the tests on a R700 card) then you might trigger GPU resets. I presume some alignment is still wrong, which probably also depends on whether we're dealing with R600 or R700 architecture. Alex also told me that some formats need tiling, not sure if that's the case here. Still reading the docs