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AGP Graphics Card Support Proposed For Removal From Linux Radeon/NVIDIA Drivers

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  • AGP Graphics Card Support Proposed For Removal From Linux Radeon/NVIDIA Drivers

    Phoronix: AGP Graphics Card Support Proposed For Removal From Linux Radeon/NVIDIA Drivers

    Longtime AMD open-source driver developer Christian König is proposing the removal of AGP graphics card support from their Radeon kernel driver as well as the open-source NVIDIA "Nouveau" kernel driver and in turn removing the AGP related code from the TTM memory management code...

    http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?pag...uveau-Drop-RFC

  • #2
    I've been wondering how long Nouveau plans to maintain the NV04 Riva TNT, TNT2.

    It's interesting to note that there can be cards of every generation that support PCI (not express of course). GeForce 8 (8xxx) desktop appears to be the first to drop any AGP.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_o...ocessing_units

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    • #3
      That's a tricky one. I've long-since removed all AGP stuff from my inventory, and even my 2003-era Inspiron 5000 laptop had a ?128MB? PCI-Express Radeon x300 installed.

      Most systems that have AGP graphics *could* function with a PCI-based graphics card, but that'd be forcing a hardware change. I suspect that its very rare that an AGP-equipped system doesn't have at least one PCI slot. Whether that/those slot(s) are filled already is another question entirely.

      Would an AGP graphics card still work using PCI features (e.g. without the specific texture migration functions of AGP) and bandwidth, or would the cards become completely non-functional without this support?

      Honestly if I had any systems with AGP slots still in use, I'd probably have already switched them to newer, more power efficient PCI cards anyway. I've got older systems and NAS boxes with GeForce 8400GS and Radeon 5400 PCI cards in them, and they can still handle a user desktop and h.264 decoding just fine, and a Radeon 5400 PCI is still probably as fast or faster than the top of the line graphics cards from 20 years ago.

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      • #4
        As long as this doesn't interfere with passing through PCI/AGP devices to virtual machines then it's not really a huge deal. I'd be a bit shocked if there's a Linux gamer using a Voodoo 4/5 graphics card with Linux to play retro games since I'm yet to come across a Glide exclusive Linux game that didn't look/run better in OpenGL. I have been experimenting recently with a Voodoo2 and Linux, but those attempts are at detaching the hardware from the Host OS and passing them directly to a Windows 98SE Virtual Machine (Retro Gaming being the goal.)

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        • #5
          Would an AGP graphics card still work using PCI features (e.g. without the specific texture migration functions of AGP) and bandwidth, or would the cards become completely non-functional without this support?
          From patch
          Old hardware should continue to work in PCI mode.
          Guessing it will mean less performance, but should still work.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by gQuigs View Post

            From patch

            Guessing it will mean less performance, but should still work.
            Yeah. Skimming the wikipedia entry for AGP, it sounds like it'll function as 66Mhz PCI just without the card being able to texture directly from system memory (requiring a copy from system memory to GPU VRAM). So less performance, but still better than 33Mhz PCI.

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            • #7
              So if someone had an AMD Radeon HD 4670 AGP card, it should continue to work in PCI mode but slower? If so, it doesn't seem like a bad trade off. I mean if the slower performance was a deal breaker, they could stick to a LTS distro like RHEL or CentOS 8 and be good support wise until May 2029 and get some software updates via 3rd party repos and Flatpak.
              Last edited by Xaero_Vincent; 05-11-2020, 02:24 PM.

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              • #8
                Let's move this to a DKMS module.

                Oh wait I think my 15-year-old laptop could be using an AGP card...

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                • #9
                  If the benefits outweigh the costs, I am in favor of abandoning museum pieces. This seems to be the case here.

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                  • #10
                    I think I still have a passively cooled Nvidia 7600GS AGP card somewhere, used to use it in an old AMD Athlon 3400+ machine. I remember it actually worked very well with nouveau.
                    Oh well, I don't even know where it is, least I have any use of it now.

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