Zink Enables OpenGL Threading For "Huge Perf Gains"

Written by Michael Larabel in Mesa on 30 September 2022 at 06:00 AM EDT. 11 Comments
Recently the open-source AMD OpenGL driver "RadeonSI" enabled OpenGL threading by default for the "glthread" option that has long been opt-in on a per-game/app basis. Along with that has been a number of glthread-related improvements to this code that punts executing OpenGL calls to a separate CPU thread. The Zink OpenGL-on-Vulkan driver has now unconditionally enabled OpenGL threading too.

Mike Blumenkrantz who continues working aggressively on Zink under contract for Valve has enabled "glthread" by default. With Mesa 22.3, Zink is now enabling the glthread option by default for what Blumenkrantz describes as "huge perf gains."

Mike summed up the merge request as: "along with the changes to make it vrooooooooooooooooooooooooooom."

In that merge request he noted the glthread support sped up the OpenGL-powered Half-Life 2 game by about 35%. This is on top of a number of other recent performance optimizations made to Zink for this generic OpenGL implementation built atop the Vulkan API.

There is a lot to look forward to with Mesa 22.3 stable come December. Some fresh Zink benchmarks are on my TODO list giving its rapid progress recently.
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Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com 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 OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter, LinkedIn, or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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