Intel's Mesa Driver Nearing OpenGL 4.6 With Final SPIR-V Additions Under Review

Written by Michael Larabel in Intel on 30 January 2019 at 04:19 PM EST. 6 Comments
As some other exciting Linux graphics news today alongside NVIDIA rolling out G-SYNC Compatible support for Linux, the Intel Mesa OpenGL driver could soon finally achieve OpenGL 4.6 compliance with the mainline code.

OpenGL 4.6 is well over one year old but none of the current Mesa drivers have supported this latest revision due to being held up by the ARB_gl_spirv and ARB_spirv_extensions that are big additions in allowing for SPIR-V ingestion as part of some Vulkan interoperability. This has been a big undertaking for both Intel as well as the RadeonSI driver stack, but at least for the Intel team, they have the finish line in sight.

Alejandro PiƱeiro of consulting firm Igalia sent out the final patch series needed for enabling ARB_gl_spirv and ARB_spirv_extensions for the driver and in turn enabling OpenGL 4.6.

The Igalia developer commented on the mailing list, "we reached a point where we consider our development branch good enough to enable both extensions on i965, so we preferred to send the full series, instead of keeping sending subseries of specific sub-features. As a collateral effect of enabling both extensions we can also expose OpenGL 4.6 on i965."

The big patch series is now under review on Gitlab. It's too late for Mesa 19.0 that entered its feature freeze yesterday, but hopefully we will see this OpenGL 4.6 open-source Intel support materialize in time for Mesa 19.1.0, which should be out in May. Also, hopefully the RadeonSI Gallium3D OpenGL 4.6 support isn't too far behind.

Outside of open-source/Mesa, the NVIDIA Linux driver and the Radeon Software "PRO" drivers have been supporting OpenGL 4.6 since shortly after the summer 2017 spec launch.
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