KDE Plasma's KWin Working On Per-Screen Refresh Rates, Compositing From Multiple Threads

Written by Michael Larabel in KDE on 11 December 2020 at 08:53 AM EST. 26 Comments
KDE Plasma users will hopefully be seeing the KWin Wayland compositor perform better and more reliably in 2021.

As KWin becomes more focused as a Wayland compositor rather than imposing the current limitations found with X11, the KDE Plasma desktop experience should improve nicely. KDE developer Vlad Zahorodnii penned a post today outlining some of the KWin improvements being pursued particularly around compositing scheduling.

Multi-screen KDE desktop users could see a better experience in the next release. Being addressed right now are per-screen refresh rates rather than currently with Plasma on Wayland and X11 being bound to the lowest common refresh rates among multi-screen setups. The per-screen behavior is already in the works and some improved frame timing code should be wrapped up in time for Plasma 5.21.

KWin is being plumbed to better estimate/report how long it will likely take to render the next frame in order to help prevent missed frames and tearing. KWin developers are also pursuing compositing on different threads but it's unlikely that will land until at least Plasma 5.22.

Those wanting to learn about the KDE KWin infrastructure improvements being made as we roll into 2021 can see Vlad's blog post.
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