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An Open-Source Graphics Driver For Snapdragon

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  • curaga
    replied
    I define "mobile gpu binary blob" as everything the vendor ships as their "display drivers". I have used multiple vendors on ARM and no blob has any support for 2d accel (and the 3d drivers generally suck, too).

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  • liam
    replied
    Originally posted by curaga View Post
    @liam, you missed my *edit below, I meant to say "all mobile gpu blobs". (post editing still broken in Opera)

    Even if some SoC has a block for that, the binary drivers for that soc rarely support using it.
    I take it that by "binary drivers" you mean just the gpu blob? If so, that may, or may not be true. It depends on whether the display is connected solely to the gpu. I don't know the answer.
    I would ASSUME that the framebuffer is located on system memory and that it would have a path to the display. If so, I would agree that the gpublob needn't be aware of these other ASICs.

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  • curaga
    replied
    @liam, you missed my *edit below, I meant to say "all mobile gpu blobs". (post editing still broken in Opera)

    Even if some SoC has a block for that, the binary drivers for that soc rarely support using it.

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  • liam
    replied
    Originally posted by curaga View Post
    @M1kkko

    In addition to the usual reasons, most if not all mobile gpus lack 2d acceleration entirely.
    While this might be technically true for gpus, the SoCs do sometimes include dedicated dsps for operations like compositing and 2d operations. This is something Ti in particular likes to point out.

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  • smitty3268
    replied
    Originally posted by M1kkko View Post
    Thanks for all the good replies. That really cleared things up.

    Perhaps I've just seen too many Nouveau vs. Nvidia binary blob comparisons to have much faith in open source drivers. But perhaps things will change in the future, time will show.
    These ARM drivers are no where near the quality that NVidia puts into their drivers. Traditionally they've been more concerned about being the cheapest rather than the fastest, like desktop hardware has been focused on.

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  • M1kkko
    replied
    Thanks for all the good replies. That really cleared things up.

    Perhaps I've just seen too many Nouveau vs. Nvidia binary blob comparisons to have much faith in open source drivers. But perhaps things will change in the future, time will show.

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  • curaga
    replied
    *mobile gpu blobs

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  • curaga
    replied
    @M1kkko

    In addition to the usual reasons, most if not all mobile gpus lack 2d acceleration entirely. No blobs at all for that. They don't see it as a priority, but this driver already implements it.

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  • Guest
    Guest replied
    My phone has an Adreno 205 I think. It would be nice to get GNU/Linux running on it (hopefully with KDE mobile interface).

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  • Guest
    Guest replied
    Originally posted by M1kkko View Post
    I don't get it. Why are the Linux drivers for Mali and Snapdragon closed-source in the first-place?

    And then, why do some have interest in developing/using this alternative open source driver, that doesn't have official support and probably won't ever reach the level of the official driver?

    Could someone please try to explain this situation?
    As to why the drivers are closed-source, you should ask ARM and Qualcomm.

    The driver is preinstalled in most phones and tablets that use these chipsets. (e.g as part of Android). The manufacturers aren't obligated to release the code. So, if you tried to run, say a GNU/Linux distribution on the device, you'd need a driver for acceleration. Also, there's no guarantee that the driver won't ever reach the level of the official driver.

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