Recapping All The Interesting Talks Of XDC2014

Written by Michael Larabel in X.Org on 12 October 2014 at 11:40 AM EDT. 3 Comments
The XDC2014 conference officially ended on Friday and was followed on Saturday by X.Org developers drinking wine and cycling around Bordeaux, France. For those not in attendance that haven't been keeping up with all of the Phoronix articles, here's a summary.

XDC2011 Chicago

Originally there was going to be live streaming of the conference but for whatever reason that didn't turn out. All of the sessions were supposedly recorded at least but at the time of writing it doesn't appear they have been uploaded yet by the X.Org Foundation. Thankfully, however, there's the PDF slides from most of the talks. Here's the quick summary of the past week for the annual X.Org Developers' Conference:

- Perhaps most interesting was Alex Deucher's presentation about unifying their open-source driver with the Catalyst driver on Linux. This large-scale driver unification project is also leading to a new "AMDGPU" kernel driver.

- NVIDIA will support Mir and Wayland by their binary drivers as one of the other very interesting talks. An upcoming NVIDIA driver will enable EGL support outside of X11 while they're also porting their proprietary driver to using the KMS interfaces. NVIDIA is pushing for some EGL extensions to replace the GBM mess currently used by the open-source drivers.

- At the same time, NVIDIA is still pursuing the new Linux OpenGL ABI that would allow multiple OpenGL drivers to co-exist on the same Linux system and provide other benefits too... Sadly the maturing and adoption of this new OpenGL ABI is long and drawn out with this being talked about yearly since 2012 but we're still not quite there yet to see it on the Linux desktop.

- Progress is being made with improving re-clocking under Nouveau for older NVIDIA GPUs but there's still a heck of a lot of work to be done for both old and new GeForce graphics processors.

- LibWSM could offer better security for Wayland at the compositor level, thanks to the work by Martin Peres.

- GLAMOR 2D continues to improve thanks to the work done by Keith Packard, Eric Anholt, and others.

- FreeBSD is playing catch up in porting the Linux graphics drivers to BSD. DragonFlyBSD is still lagging behind too with most of the BSDs using Linux graphics drivers from the Linux 3.8 era -- around ten releases out of date behind upstream.

- Nouveau Perf-Kit is still coming but the kernel changes for implementing NVIDIA's performance counters in Nouveau are now not expected until the Linux 3.20 kernel.

- Mesa's GLSL compiler is continually improving. There were no talks at XDC2014 about LLVM in Mesa...

- The state of the X.Org Foundation.

- Libinput is great not only for Wayland compositors but the libinput library can be used as an input DDX on X.Org Servers too.

- FreeRDS is interesting for X.Org and Wayland users in need of an open-source RDP implementation.

- StarPU is still around and trying to make parallel programming for CPUs and GPUs easier.

XDC2012 N├╝rnberg

XDC2015 is going to take place either in Boston or Toronto but has yet to be officially decided.

XDC2008 Edinburgh

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Michael Larabel is the principal author of 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 automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter, LinkedIn, or contacted via

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