Radeon Crimson 16.3 Released With Vulkan, But No Sign Yet For Linux
When hearing that Radeon Software Crimson 16.3 brings official Vulkan support over their earlier Windows beta, I was excited and hoping the Linux release would join in. The release notes also mention some performance improvements with this Crimson 16.3 driver and other enhancements to complement the Vulkan mainline API support.
Unfortunately, even with the day ending, there's no sign of Crimson 16.3 for Linux. While back in January I was told by AMD as part of the new AMDGPU Linux driver details that this year they would be looking to sync back their Windows and Linux driver releases, that doesn't appear to be the case yet. From my details back in January, "They will be focusing in 2016 on syncing their Catalyst Linux releases to those on Windows. While years ago they were timed the same, in 2015 that didn't always happen and there were just a few updates issued all year. Fortunately, that looks to be changing this year and they will try to be more timely about releases for fixes to support the latest high-profile Linux games."
The latest proprietary driver release per AMD.com is still Crimson 15.12 for Linux, released back on 18 December... We're going on an entire quarter without an official Crimson Linux update while during this time on Windows has been a few releases.
Anyhow, hopefully AMD/RTG will soon put out a 16.3 Linux driver update that will premiere their Vulkan API support. In case you aren't up on all of your Phoronix reading, the AMD Vulkan Linux driver at first will be closed-source for the near-term. The Vulkan driver will also only work with the AMDGPU kernel DRM driver, which at the moment is officially limited to GCN 1.2+ GPUs and experimental support for GCN 1.1. More details when the release happens.