Mesa EGL Extension Needed For Universal Driver Configuration GUI Is Almost Landed
Written by Michael Larabel in Mesa on 24 January 2019 at 01:00 AM EST. 3 Comments
MESA --
The MESA_query_driver extension for EGL is of fundamental importance if there is to be a "universal" graphics driver control panel / configuration GUI for Mesa 3D drivers. The extension briefly landed today in Mesa but ended up being reverted due to build problems.

MESA_query_driver provides an EGL extension that exposes the name of the driver as well as that driver's option list. The option list is a list of options defined in XML that could be exposed to the user. In other words, all the practical per-driver configuration options that might be useful for an enthusiast/gamer to configure based on their preferences exposed via a standardized interface.

The extension was authored by Red Hat's Rob Clark of Freedreno fame as well as Nicolai Hähnle of AMD. Pushing this work forward is student developer Veluri Mithun who is working on advancing ADriConf as a Linux graphics driver control panel.

The plumbing for this new EGL extension was merged today, but was reverted a short time later due to build issues. This code was just adding the infrastructure and not filling out each driver's parameters, etc. Presumably the build issue will get fixed up shortly and this project can move along.

This gives us hope in 2019 we could see a more featureful Linux graphics driver configuration UI that works for all the prominent Mesa drivers. AMD has previously communicated they're leaving that work up to the different desktop environments rather than creating a new Linux control panel themselves. Intel meanwhile recently communicated they'll be looking into it in the future. So for now it's hoping the community can come up with a competitive option.
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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 or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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