RADV Vulkan Driver Enables EXT_shader_object By Default With Mesa 24.1

Written by Michael Larabel in Mesa on 8 April 2024 at 06:53 AM EDT. 17 Comments
It's been a long journey but Valve's Samuel Pitoiset has now enabled VK_EXT_shader_object support by default with Mesa's Radeon Vulkan driver "RADV" for the upcoming Mesa 24.1 release.

EXT_shader_object was introduced one year and a few days ago back in the Vulkan 1.3.246 revision. VK_EXT_shader_object was devised by all the major hardware/software vendors and provides a new shader object type to represent a single compiled shader stage. These Vulkan shader objects are more flexible than Vulkan pipeline objects. This has been one of the exciting extensions sought and used by the Zink OpenGL-on-Vulkan implementation among others albeit "ESO" support by hardware drivers has been a long process.

Radeon graphics card

Mesa's RADV driver has long been working on EXT_shader_object support while finally today within Mesa 24.1 it's enabled by default. Samuel Pitoiset landed the change to now enable shader objects out-of-the-box while the "RADV_DEBUG=noeso" environment variable is now supported as a means of disabling the support for debugging/comparison purposes. Pioiset wrote in today's commit:
"This has been a long and painful extension to implement but finally RADV has support for it on all supported generations. It's passing VKCTS and GLCTS through Zink but the number of application using ESO is currently very limited."

Mesa 24.1 is shaping up to be a very exciting feature release for the open-source OpenGL/Vulkan drivers and should be out as stable roughly around the end of May.
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