Upcoming Catalyst Linux Driver Offers HSA & VCE Support
Written by Michael Larabel in AMD on 25 September 2014 at 01:50 PM EDT. Add A Comment
AMD --
While AMD just released its first OpenCL 2.0 Linux driver, which is marked fglrx 14.41, the next driver that's currently in testing is fglrx 14.50... This should be more interesting.

The Catalyst fglrx 14.50 Linux driver has yet to be publicly released, but I'm told by a reliable Phoronix reader that besides the OpenCL 2.0 support it also adds in HSA and VCE support.

HSA is AMD's much talked about Heterogeneous System Architecture. Finally in past months AMD has begun working on the Linux support -- including in the open-source driver world. Earlier this summer AMD open-sourced an HSA kernel driver with plans of having HSA materialize on Linux this year. Now with the Catalyst fglrx 14.50 driver it looks like things are finally materializing there.

VCE support is the GPU-accelerated video encoding support that's been offered by the open-source RadeonSI Gallium3D driver and exposed via the OpenMAX state tracker. It's not clear yet if the Catalyst VCE implementation is being exposed through an OpenMAX API, if AMD has extended XvBA, or if they're taking a different approach.

Stay tuned for more details on the upcoming fglrx 14.50 release. On a related note, to the potential new AMD Linux driver strategy I exclusively broke a few months ago, I have yet to receive any updates from AMD on that matter during conference calls and it's not clear whether that strategy is even still being pursued.
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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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