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Blender Developers Find Old Linux Drivers Are Better Maintained Than Windows

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  • Blender Developers Find Old Linux Drivers Are Better Maintained Than Windows

    Phoronix: Blender Developers Find Old Linux Drivers Are Better Maintained Than Windows

    To not a lot of surprise compared to the world of proprietary graphics drivers on Windows where once the support is retired the driver releases stop, old open-source Linux OpenGL drivers are found to be better maintained...

    http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?pag...U-Requirements

  • #2
    Typo:

    Originally posted by phoronix View Post
    Blender developers acknowledge older hardware may be work better on Linux.

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    • #3
      I still use my eight year old notebook with a 6770M and Intel HD 3000. The Windows driver support for both is a catastrophe, the ultra low power state must be disabled or you get to wait two minutes to get the system to boot and other crazy problems while trying to use the desktop. With recent Insider Builds DirectX 11 support seems completly broken and I cannot even play games that worked before, like Battlefield 3. The experience on Linux for daily tasks is better, unfortunately the Clover OpenCL support for R600G lacks key capabilities and R600G in general is not that well suited for gaming on Linux missing out on all the new Vulkan goodies like DXVK.
      Last edited by ms178; 05-01-2019, 04:59 PM.

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      • #4
        A bit weird, since a lot of commercial software tends to avoid Linux claiming stuff like not enough compatibility. I know, it's not exactly the same thing, but Blender is a solid example that if you develop something where Linux isn't an afterthought, it's not hard to make your software run smoothly on a very wide variety of hardware.

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        • #5
          Isn't Linux' problem usually the delayed (full and performant) support for the latest devices, instead of maintaining support for old devices?
          I'm surprised about this article tbh.

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          • #6
            This is fairly obvious surely. Companies do not release new drivers once their hardware reaches end of life. There is no real concept of EOL for open-source operating systems because we generally have to make do with older stuff anyway.

            The Intel GMA 915 card on Windows doesn't even support OpenGL 2.0, whereas on OpenBSD it is at 2.1 and very robust.

            (Linux dropped the ball a little and removed 2.1 support for these cards citing that "it was mostly emulated anyway", but the end result is crap broke needlessly :/.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by thecursedfly View Post
              Isn't Linux' problem usually the delayed (full and performant) support for the latest devices, instead of maintaining support for old devices?
              I'm surprised about this article tbh.
              Not when it comes to Intel, they've already been upstreaming code for around a year to the various relevant projects for their Gen11/Xe hardware and it's not due to hit the market until Q3 at the earliest. AMD are also now really good at having driver support before hardware releases (ignoring the 590 glitch which was mostly down to manufacturers).

              I'm not going to talk about nVidia...

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              • #8
                This isn't surprising one bit. 90% of drivers for Windows are written by contracted resources, not by the marketer of the hardware.

                If Company A wants to sell a Widget Card in the US, they source the hardware in China and typically that HW manufacturer will have the drivers written for them under contract, or the vendor will hire a contractor themselves to do it. The product is made and sold with the driver.

                When an issue pops up, usually because an OS upgrade appears, if the driver doesn't support that version of Windows, you are out of luck. The Widget Device was made and sold to work with only one Windows release. (usually due to an INF file format)

                Because Linus enforces more compatibility in Linux development, and due to a lesser influence of commercial interests, once a driver for Linux is created for said Widget Card and included in the kernel, then it typically comes forward with the upgrade.

                The hardware selling people like this Windows model, because everytime Microsoft updates Windows, people have to go out and buy new devices. This keeps the revenue flowing for these hardware marketers and drives their alignment (bribes them) to stay with Windows. It also is an easy way to get out and stay out of the driver support business. When a customer wants to use X Widget on Windows 10 and it worked on Windows 7, the vendor can easily say "it isn't supported" when really all they have to do is update the driver. In their mind, why? Make them buy new stuff!

                I have seen some developers getting smarter about Windows driver development that are able to overcome Microsoft endless driver model changes. One bane of using Windows is how quickly scanners get obsoleted with each OS release. Yet scanners can last a very long time. So VueScan simply cataloged all of those scanners and their INF's and created a driver set that supports 5600 of them.

                How many storage adapters, especially ones with hardware RAID, were obsoleted in Windows terms, are working great in Linux? A lot it seems.

                So the fact anyone finds that Linux drivers are better supported down the road is not a surprising statement.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Slithery View Post

                  Not when it comes to Intel, they've already been upstreaming code for around a year to the various relevant projects for their Gen11/Xe hardware and it's not due to hit the market until Q3 at the earliest. AMD are also now really good at having driver support before hardware releases (ignoring the 590 glitch which was mostly down to manufacturers).

                  I'm not going to talk about nVidia...
                  Ok, I kinda stopped after reading the title so I didn't read that this was meant mainly about GPUs and not other kind of devices. That makes more sense.

                  Still, I remember when Radeon+Vega mobile chipsets came out last year, it took some time before they were well supported on Linux (I don't know exactly at what stage that support is right now since I ended up with Intel), and I believe that was a few months slower than for Windows.
                  Then we don't want to talk about Nvidia, while that is one of the main players, if not THE player if we look at performance. I was "forced" to buy a Intel integrated graphics laptop just because of the Nvidia drivers situation (my previous Nvidia+Linux experience has been terrible: frequent freezes). There was too less choice for AMD laptops.
                  Also, I'm still waiting for OpenCL being enabled by default for my Intel UHD 620 card; a new NEO Intel driver is being talked about for that, but it's not yet the default under Fedora.
                  There is also the confusing situation of multiple different drivers for the same devices of each brand, which doesn't help the users and creates confusion; under Windows you have ONE driver and it works well, while under Linux it seems that there are several attempts, none of which work perfectly (not saying it's like that, but it's my experience).

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                  • #10
                    So many and so dense misconceptions in this thread that I'm not even gonna bother dismantling them.

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