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Etnaviv Gallium3D Driver Now Wiring Up ASTC Texture Compression

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  • Etnaviv Gallium3D Driver Now Wiring Up ASTC Texture Compression

    Phoronix: Etnaviv Gallium3D Driver Now Wiring Up ASTC Texture Compression

    The Etnaviv open-source driver stack providing reverse-engineered Vivante Linux graphics driver support continues on its feature streak...

    http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?pag...ex-Compression

  • #2
    I thought patents on S3TC have just expired recently.

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    • #3
      On desktop hardware, ASTC is supported by Skylake and newer and NVIDIA with Kepler and newer.
      Discrete NVIDIA cards do not support ASTC textures, only Tegra cards do. In OpenGL, ASTC support is emulated by decompressing them in software before being uploaded to the GPU.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by shmerl View Post
        I thought patents on S3TC have just expired recently.
        That's correct. The real benefit of ASTC is that it's extremely flexible. It can scale up to be pretty high quality or down to a very low bitrate for low power mobile hardware. The downside is it's extreme flexibility - it requires a lot of complicated hardware to be added into the GPU to handle all the different cases, which has led the desktop GPU's to largely skip implementing it.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by shmerl View Post
          I thought patents on S3TC have just expired recently.
          The patents for implementing S3TC in all software using the cpu have all expired. Implementing as in straight decoding or encoding S3TC. There is is some include few held by Microsoft expires(2028) that effect trans-coding S3TC into formats the GPU might already know without fully decoding S3TC .

          S3TC to avoid the remaining patents you might have to fully decode then encode the textures to match the GPU. So yes patents prevent you from implementing S3TC at all are over and done with. Patents might block you from using the best possible way to implement S3TC is now the problem.

          ASTC has no patents in away to doing trans-coding from ASTC to what the video card knows or perform best with. GL_KHR_texture_compression_astc_ldr is a feature required for claiming opengl ES 3.2 support and ASTC is part of Vulcan. So kind of required.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by shmerl View Post
            I thought patents on S3TC have just expired recently.
            ASTC is better. Honestly every year I wonder why there isn't broad support on desktop.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by oiaohm View Post

              The patents for implementing S3TC in all software using the cpu have all expired. Implementing as in straight decoding or encoding S3TC. There is is some include few held by Microsoft expires(2028) that effect trans-coding S3TC into formats the GPU might already know without fully decoding S3TC .

              S3TC to avoid the remaining patents you might have to fully decode then encode the textures to match the GPU. So yes patents prevent you from implementing S3TC at all are over and done with. Patents might block you from using the best possible way to implement S3TC is now the problem.

              ASTC has no patents in away to doing trans-coding from ASTC to what the video card knows or perform best with. GL_KHR_texture_compression_astc_ldr is a feature required for claiming opengl ES 3.2 support and ASTC is part of Vulcan. So kind of required.
              The patent duration is 20 years so this new transcoding invention was published in 2008. TBH I haven't heard about it. I'm pretty sure all the s3tc tech before 2008 is 100% patent free and so are the implementations, fully. You don't necessarily need to transcode.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by caligula View Post

                The patent duration is 20 years so this new transcoding invention was published in 2008. TBH I haven't heard about it. I'm pretty sure all the s3tc tech before 2008 is 100% patent free and so are the implementations, fully. You don't necessarily need to transcode.
                Not quite. This one is using https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Term_of_patent the new rules 17 years from data of grant and extension by year for taking just over 3 years to process. Its a 2007 method from Microsoft it first appears in the development releases of direct x leading to direct x 10.1 in 2008 with formal publication and grant 2010 . Its one of those things where wine is not going to exactly match windows performance profile for a while. Hardware optimised for direct x10.1 can perform better being passed the trans-code form of s3tc than standard s3tc so this is a bug bare to those attempting to make performing drivers on some hardware.

                The new USA rules on term of patent make working out when items are no longer covered by patent harder. Result is you now have to use 25 years instead of 20 as ballpark guess to allow for time starting from grant and extensions given if processing takes more than 3 years. Yes this patent has a 21 year term by the old method of from while filed.

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