With OpenGL 4.6 Achieved, Zink Working CTS Fixes, Substantial Performance Gains

Written by Michael Larabel in Mesa on 19 February 2021 at 06:27 AM EST. 6 Comments
Now that Mesa 21.1 has OpenGL 4.6 support for Zink, the attention is turning to fixes for the OpenGL Conformance Test Suite and juicing as much performance as possible out of this OpenGL on Vulkan driver layer within Mesa.

Most active Zink developer Mike Blumenkrantz, working under contract for Valve, has been working on the CTS fixes and performance improvements now that mainline Mesa has the Zink GL 4.6 support. Besides OpenGL 4.6, OpenGL ES 3.1 is also now possible with Zink.

Over the coming days and month or so, he is planning to land improved barrier support, removing explicit pre-fencing, descriptor caching, and various bug fixes. Even this morning a number of the Zink patches were merged.

As for the performance with the ongoing work, Blumenkrantz noted, "All told, just as an example, Unigine Heaven (which can now run in color!) should see roughly a 100% performance improvement (possibly more) once this is in, and I’d expect substantial performance gains across the board."

While the performance is rapidly improving, he does acknowledge it will still be a while before you can play all of your favorite OpenGL games on Zink. "There comes a time when performance is “good enough” for a while, and, after some intense optimizing since the start of the year, that time has come. So now it’s back to stabilization mode, and I’m now aiming to have a vaguely decent pass rate in the near term."

More details on Mike's blog.
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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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