Radeon Vulkan Driver Gets A Significant Performance Optimization For Pre-4.20 Kernels
Written by Michael Larabel in Radeon on 26 November 2018 at 09:33 AM EST. 14 Comments
RADEON --
Fresh out of our Radeon Vulkan Driver Benchmarks: AMDVLK 2018.4.2 vs. AMDGPU-PRO 18.40 vs. Mesa 18.2/19.0, RADV driver co-founder Bas Nieuwenhuizen has posted a patch to help further the performance of the Mesa RADV driver.

Bas reported in the forums today that they are seeing much better numbers with Linux 4.20. It turns out that is due to an AMDGPU DRM change by AMD's Christian K├Ânig for trying to allocate video RAM as a power of two.

Nieuwenhuizen has made a similar change to the AMDGPU RADV Winsys code for trying to help pre-4.20 kernels with a similar move. The RADV change is algining large buffers to the fragment size.

The two line patch improves the performance of Talos Principle by about 15% and also offers "significant improvements" for other games like Rise of the Tomb Raider when using Linux 4.19 and older.

As the patch is very simple, Bas is looking to have it back-ported to current Mesa stable series too rather than having to wait for users to switch to Mesa 19.0. As since by the time Mesa 19.0 is widespread among Linux gamers, they will likely be on Linux 4.20+ kernels too.

I'm currently working on some AMDGPU kernel comparison benchmarks with RADV and should have them out later today.
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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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