Valve Now Funding Blumenkrantz - Zink OpenGL-On-Vulkan To Continue
Written by Michael Larabel in Mesa on 23 November 2020 at 04:40 PM EST. 39 Comments
MESA --
Longtime open-source developer Mike Blumenkrantz who has been an Enlightenment developer for many years and was working for Samsung's Open-Source Group prior to its demise jumped into the open-source Linux graphics world this year. While being unemployed he began hacking on the Zink Gallium3D code that allows generic OpenGL acceleration over the Vulkan API. He quickly got the code to the point of OpenGL 4.6 support and quite compelling performance compared to where Zink was at earlier this year. Now it turns out he will continue with his Linux graphics adventures thanks to funding from Valve.

Mike Blumenkrantz shared today that Valve is going to be sponsoring his graphics-related work moving forward. At least for now, that Linux graphics work is still on the matter of Zink.

Now thanks to the Valve sponsorship, Blumenkrantz while working along with Collabora's Erik Faye-Lund who began the Zink initiative will be working to upstream most of Mike's patches.

Mike tackled the OpenGL 4.6 support and exciting performance optimizations, but much of that work remains outside of the Mesa tree as it has yet to be reviewed and in some cases cleaned up. Thus his next "Operation Oxidize" phase of Zink'ing is going to be about getting the Zink "work in progress" code upstreamed. He is hoping to upstream nearly all of it before the end of 2020.

Thus for Mesa 20.1 in Q1'2021 we are looking at OpenGL 4.6 / OpenGL ES 3.2 over Vulkan made possible and with quite decent performance. As more work lands, I'll be back around with more benchmarks.

Exciting times ahead and great to see Valve continuing to fund more developers to work on the open-source Linux graphics stack.
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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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