AMD Planning To Enable GLAMOR By Default For R600 & Newer GPUs
Written by Michael Larabel in Radeon on 21 November 2016 at 09:41 AM EST. 26 Comments
Currently the xf86-video-ati DDX driver only uses GLAMOR acceleration (2D via OpenGL) when using GCN GPUs where there isn't any hardware-specific EXA 2D code-paths implemented. However, AMD developers are now planning to switch over all R600 GPUs and newer to using GLAMOR by default.

While the old EXA code-paths within the xf86-video-ati DDX will remain, the plan is to enable GLAMOR by default for R600 (Radeon HD 2000 series) and newer when running on X.Org Server 1.18.3 or newer.

AMD's Michel Dänzer justified this change in default 2D acceleration behavior with this patch's comment, "glamor should now perform at least as well as EXA in general, and this allows DRI3 to be enabled by default for [R600 GPUs and newer]." Their Radeon-specific 2D acceleration code-paths had only supported DRI2 while by using GLAMOR they can have DRI3 for "free" to their driver via the hardware-agnostic GLAMOR code.

The patch has already been signed off by Alex Deucher so will likely end up in xf86-video-ati Git soon.
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