Experimental OpenGL 3.1 Support For Apple M1/M2 Graphics On Linux

Written by Michael Larabel in Apple on 6 June 2023 at 11:35 AM EDT. 17 Comments
Experimental driver code available via the Asahi Linux "edge" packages allow for OpenGL 3.1 and OpenGL ES 3.0 to be exposed for Apple Silicon M1/M2 SoCs under this Arch Linux based OS.

Alyssa Rosenzweig announced today that OpenGL 3.1 is now available under the Asahi Linux edge channel compared to the prior OpenGL 2.1 support limit. Similarly, OpenGL ES 3.0 is now available as a nice upgrade from OpenGL ES 2.0. This gets more classic games now working nicely under Asahi Linux on Apple hardware.

This experimental code isn't yet officially conformant against the OpenGL 3.1 or OpenGL ES 3.1 specifications but is working for those wanting to make use of it for running more primarily open-source games on Asahi Linux. OpenGL ES 3.1 support is expected to be achieved soon.

The Asahi Linux developers also continue working toward a Vulkan API driver for Apple hardware but right now are still "a while away" from the baseline Vulkan 1.0 requirements.

Upgrading Asahi Linux

The Asahi AGX Gallium3D driver in Mesa continues to see new code upstreamed from there while the easiest way to consume the latest Apple M1/M2 graphics bits are by running the Asahi Linux distribution. The main blocker for upstream Apple graphics support elsewhere is the Rust-written Apple Direct Rendering Manager driver not yet having been upstreamed and it looks like it could still be a number of months before that is upstreamed into a released Linux kernel version.

More details on the OpenGL 3.1 / OpenGL ES 3.0 support with Asahi Linux edge via this blog post.
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Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 20,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter, LinkedIn, or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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