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VIA Releases New Documentation, But It's Old

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  • VIA Releases New Documentation, But It's Old

    Phoronix: VIA Releases New Documentation, But It's Old

    A few weeks back we shared VIA's Linux TODO list, which was very disappointing to say the least. VIA Technologies has gone through several phases of trying to be "open-source friendly" and they certainly try to brand themselves as such, but it's still going to be a year (or longer) before they have a viable open-source driver stack and by that time the VIA hardware that's supported will be dated...

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  • #2
    Still, at least they're trying. Unlike other we're-too-good-for-OSS companies.


    • #3
      Originally posted by Ant P. View Post
      Still, at least they're trying. Unlike other we're-too-good-for-OSS companies.
      Agreed. At least they're releasing documentation for something that's still on the market.

      Given that their current products are based on the VX800, it's somewhat possible the next generation will also be a similar derivative. If so, any documentation we get now might help us prepare proper drivers for the future as well. If we can get the current hardware to be well supported, it might be less work to get the next-gen stuff working.

      And really, better late (VIA) than never (NVidia) I guess...


      • #4
        Except Nvidia's chips actually do something useful....


        • #5
          I think nvidia should release all specs from Geforce2 to Geforce 6 series. There are 0 reasons to not do this.

          About VIA, good job but continue to release new specs.


          • #6
            Argh. Well. Something at least, yes. But what about the old chips like CLE266 and CN700? They should be capable of doing more but there is nothing by driver to get them going. They refuse EXA, they will blacken the screen if you try any opengl game... so what will be done about that matter?
            Didn't really see something for these still not really working chips.
            Stop TCPA, stupid software patents and corrupt politicians!


            • #7
              Originally posted by bulletxt View Post
              I think nvidia should release all specs from Geforce2 to Geforce 6 series. There are 0 reasons to not do this.
              Well, there are some reasons not to do this even IF the are willing to push out docs.

              It has been said many times on this forum: It's a very demanding process (manpower)
              to get these documents ready if they aren't already in "good shape" - and it's doubtful that they are if they were only meant for internal use.

              That's why I can't appreciate enough the work done by AMD/Bridgman
              concerning documentation for such complex pieces of hardware.

              I'll take the chance to thank you again!


              • #8
                The date on the docs really has no bearing on anything. The docs were likely written before the hardware even hit final silicon. Cleaning up and reviewing the docs and sending them through legal can be a long process. Who are you to say how long this process should take? Preparing documentation for public release is a lot of work (I know, I've done it for a lot of AMD stuff). Lots of the internal docs I draw on when I prepare the open documentation were written months (or even years in some cases) prior to when the relevant hardware was actually released (hardware design for GPUs starts years in advance). Once you have that info, you need to cross check it with what features/quirks actually made it to silicon. Add in a few rounds of revisions and engineering and legal sign off and it can easily take months.
                Last edited by agd5f; 12 January 2010, 04:08 PM.


                • #9
                  ... and for the record, agd5f has done more work in this area than anyone I know, including myself...
                  Test signature


                  • #10
                    I also think Michael has been bashing VIA a little bit to hard in the recent past. IIRC the r500-based cards also already were pretty old by the time AMD released the documentation, but it was still cheered at by everyone including Michael.
                    I guess that was because many people already had a r500-card back then anyway. VIAs problem imho is that nobody has their chips currently, so that documentation covering old hardware only benefits the very few owners of those chips. If VIA would release the documentation for its current chips, that'd be more interesting for (and cheered at by) linux-users in general because that'd be something they could base a purchase of new (VIA) hardware on.
                    ... I'm not entirely sure if it's getting clear what I mean, my english fails me. :>
                    Last edited by Zhick; 12 January 2010, 03:48 PM.