AMDVLK 2021.Q2.6 Vulkan Driver Released - Removes Pre-Polaris / Pre-Raven Support

Written by Michael Larabel in Radeon on 25 June 2021 at 06:08 AM EDT. 21 Comments
Following the announcement this week that AMD is dropping pre-Polaris GPU support (or pre-Raven Ridge support for APUs) from their mainline Radeon Software driver on Windows, the AMDVLK open-source Vulkan driver has also now similarly discontinued that older GPU support.

AMDVLK 2021.Q2.6 was released today as their official open-source AMD Vulkan driver. With AMDVLK sharing sources to their proprietary Vulkan driver on Linux and Windows, to little surprise this driver is doing away with the pre-Polaris dGPU and pre-Raven APU support. So moving forward only the newer Radeon graphics are supported by this Vulkan driver, aligned with what is supported by Radeon Software on Windows.

This change doesn't result in any substantial code savings for now. The merge of the PAL code disabling pre-Polaris/pre-Raven support came in at 11.1k deletions and 9.7k additions, which had various other changes alongside that old GPU support removal. Code specific to pre-Raven/pre-Polaris was removed but of course lots of common code needs to stick around that is still used and relevant by newer generations of AMD Radeon graphics.

Aside from retiring the older GPU support, AMDVLK 2021.Q2.6 also now supports using the raw monotonic clock for EXT_calibrated_timestamps, fixes memory leaks during Vulkan CTS runs, and also has work on VK_EXT_extended_dynamic_state2 driver handling.

While Radeon Software and AMDVLK are retiring the older GPU support, all indications so far are no support changes are planned for the Radeon or AMDGPU Linux kernel DRM drivers nor to the Mesa drivers of R600g/RadeonSI and the independently developed RADV Vulkan driver. AMD's upstream open-source support continues to live on for far older GPUs in the kernel and Mesa, just that AMD themselves don't invest in improving that code but rather laissez faire support.

The new AMDVLK 2021.Q2.6 driver can be downloaded from GitHub.
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