Open-Source Nouveau Linux 4.10 + NvBoost vs. NVIDIA Proprietary Linux Driver Performance
Written by Michael Larabel in Display Drivers on 7 January 2017. Page 4 of 4. 30 Comments

Pretty damn fine results in many of the benchmarks considering that a majority of the Nouveau driver was written by community developers through clean-room reverse-engineering! The pity is with the GTX 9800 Maxwell and newer hardware requiring the signed firmware images that are severely hampering the Nouveau efforts.

Well, if you've been wondering how well the open-source Nouveau driver compares to the NVIDIA proprietary Linux driver, these numbers provide the latest look as of the Linux 4.10 kernel with the NvBoost support for Kepler GPUs. It's a shame though that there still isn't any open-source accelerated driver support for the GTX 1050/1060/1070/1080 and even going back to the GeForce GTX 900 series there isn't yet any usable 3D/gaming performance due to the re-clocking shortcoming. Hopefully NVIDIA will end up devoting more resources in 2017 to this open-source driver stack as over the past year AMD has been dominating the open-source GPU Linux driver scene where their driver is now on par with their cross-platform, binary blob. See my earlier Nouveau Linux 4.10 tests if you missed that article from Thursday with more details on the latest state of this community-driven driver.

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Michael Larabel is the principal author of 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 automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via

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