Mesa 19.2 Is Just Six Patches Away From Seeing OpenGL 4.6 Support
Written by Michael Larabel in Mesa on 17 July 2019 at 09:07 AM EDT. 16 Comments
MESA --
Later this month marks two years since the release of OpenGL 4.6 and just ahead of that date it looks like Mesa could finally land its complete GL 4.6 implementation, at least as far as the Intel open-source graphics driver support is concerned.

Mesa is now just six patches away from OpenGL 4.6! Following recent SPIR-V patches being merged, there are just five patches left plus the sixth that updates the documentation and flips on OpenGL 4.6 for the i915 Mesa driver. The remaining patches are in regards to base vertex work.

This has been a long time coming but this OpenGL 4.6 support for Intel on Linux via MR #178 will hopefully be crossed in the coming days given all of the SPIR-V work that has been landing.

The Mesa 19.2 feature freeze and first release candidate are expected around 6 August, so there is still time for hopefully seeing this OpenGL 4.6 support materialize for this quarterly update to Mesa3D and for marking two years since the OpenGL 4.6 specification was published.

At this time it doesn't flip on OpenGL 4.6 for the AMD Radeon (RadeonSI) Gallium3D driver but that hopefully isn't too far behind. There's been SPIR-V work progressing on that front as its main blocker as well and for there RadeonSI has begun leveraging NIR to take advantage of existing code paths. But whether RadeonSI will see OpenGL 4.6 achieved for Mesa 19.2 likely comes down to Marek's magic. Likewise, the Intel Iris Gallium3D driver hopefully shouldn't be far behind either in OpenGL 4.6 support thanks to leveraging much of the same NIR/SPIR-V code as its i915 ancestor.

The Mesa3D drivers were fairly quick in supporting many of the newer extensions mandated by OpenGL 4.6 like KHR_no_error, texture_filter_anisotropic, transform_feedback_overflow_query, shader_group_vote, and others, but it's been the SPIR-V ingestion bits as part of Vulkan interoperability that's taken the better part of two years to square away for these open-source OpenGL drivers.

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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 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 OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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