NVIDIA's New Memory Allocator Project To Be Standalone, Undecided On Name

Written by Michael Larabel in NVIDIA on 30 November 2017 at 02:19 PM EST. 24 Comments
Following NVIDIA's call for feedback on their effort to create a new device memory allocator API that would be of equal use to the upstream open-source drivers and potentially replace (or indirectly used by) the Wayland compositors in place of the existing GBM API and NVIDIA's failed EGLStreams Wayland push, their next steps continue to be formulated.

With a week of feedback from upstream, open-source GPU driver developers, it's looking like NVIDIA's device memory allocator API is moving along. While GBM (Generic Buffer Manager) might end up implementing this new library at some point in the future with yet to be written code, there appears to be some consensus on moving forward this API/library as its own standalone project.

So now they're talking of establishing it as its own FreeDesktop.org project.

The tentative name of the project is Generic Device Memory Allocator and liballoc as the allocator library name, but they are looking for feedback. Some have suggested "libgalloc", but that may lead to confusion with GrAlloc. So long story short, the name is yet to be decided. If you have any naming ideas for this new project, be sure to let them know or pass it along by means of the forums.

Other messages in this discussion thread also indicate NVIDIA will pursue getting this new API working under Android's GrAlloc/HWComposer projects as well.

Whatever name they end up deciding, it likely won't be until well into 2018 before the API and implementation are stable enough for use by the mainstream Wayland compositors. NVIDIA has some tentative support within an unreleased version of their proprietary driver. NVIDIA has also committed to providing support for this new allocator API within the open-source Nouveau driver, but that too will take some time, not to mention the other mainstream Linux graphics drivers.
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