NVIDIA 396.54 Linux Driver Offers Big Performance Boost For Frequent Gamers
Yesterday NVIDIA released the 396.54 Linux driver update and while from being another point release might feel like a mundane update hot on the heels of the GeForce RTX 2070/2080 series debut, it's actually a significant driver update for Linux gamers. Here are some benchmarks showcasing the performance fix that warranted this new driver release.
As mentioned in yesterday's article, the 396.54 was released to fix a resource leak that had been existent going back to the 390 series driver. This resource leak could lead to lower performance after several OpenGL or Vulkan applications have started/stopped on the system... That's about all of the details they've made public. But in knowing that it was performance related and that they began investigating this issue when seeing some differences in Phoronix benchmark results compared to past articles and spent several weeks analyzing the issue, I fired up the 396.54 Linux driver right away for some game benchmarking.
For this benchmarking I compared the 396.51 driver (the previous stable version) to the fresh 396.54 driver update. Tests were done on a GeForce GTX 1060, GTX 1070 Ti, and GTX 1080 graphics cards. All tests were done on the same system running Ubuntu 18.04.1 LTS. No other changes were made to the system configuration besides swapping out the GPUs and driver release. All benchmarks were conducted via the Phoronix Test Suite.
Let's go look at the impact of this resource leak fix!