Intel Posts Patches For SPIR-V Generation From Mesa's GLSL Compiler
Written by Michael Larabel in Mesa on 11 November 2017 at 10:36 AM EST. 4 Comments
Longtime Intel open-source graphics driver developer Ian Romanick has posted his initial set of patches for what he calls "the first of the real SPIR-V work."

The ten patches posted on Friday allow for generating SPIR-V intermediate representation from the Mesa GLSL compiler. This is a first but important step for ARB_gl_spirv support for SPIR-V ingestion by the OpenGL drivers as mandated by the new OpenGL 4.6 specification.

At this point the test code is able to generate SPIR-V out of around ten thousand shaders from Romanick's collection of about 46 thousand GLSL shaders. While that may seem like a lot of failures still, many of the shaders not converting to SPIR-V are due to those shaders relying upon legacy features that cannot be represented within SPIR-V constructs.

The ARB_gl_spirv extension is about allowing SPIR-V modules to be used by OpenGL drivers and allowing GLSL to be turned into SPIR-V modules, as part of better interoperability with Vulkan.

Those interested in this early work towards the long effort of SPIR-V OpenGL support can be found via Mesa-dev.

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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 10,000 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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