NVIDIA EGLStreams Support Merged Into KWin For KDE Plasma 5.16

Written by Michael Larabel in KDE on 15 April 2019 at 12:00 PM EDT. 49 Comments
Quite a surprise this Monday morning is finding that KDE's EGLStreams back-end for the KWin Wayland compositor has been merged! The KDE Plasma 5.16 release this summer will thus introduce support for running the KDE Plasma Wayland session with the proprietary NVIDIA Linux driver stack.

At the end of last year it was shared that NVIDIA was developing an EGLStreams back-end for KWin, similar to the efforts in getting EGLStreams support into GNOME's Mutter compositor. By late January is when the proof-of-concept code for KWin with EGLStreams entered review. Following months of review, the back-end has been merged into KWin Git.

The back-end coming in at just under one thousand lines of code has been merged into mainline KWin Git for what will be part of KDE Plasma 5.16. This support requires a recent release of the NVIDIA proprietary graphics driver and also having the KWIN_DRM_USE_EGL_STREAMS=1 environment variable set for activating this back-end at run-time. There are a few bugs uncovered with the NVIDIA driver and hopefully those will be ironed out before Plasma 5.16 ships.

The current Plasma schedule calls for the 5.16.0 release to happen on 11 June while the beta will come on 16 May.

It's great to see this KDE EGLStreams support finally materialize especially with very little movement these days on the long talked about but yet to materialize new Unix device memory allocation API that could succeed both GBM and EGLStreams for use by Wayland compositors in the future and adopted by all graphics drivers.
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