Early Virgil 3D Results Show This Virtual GPU For QEMU Has Room For Improvement
Written by Michael Larabel in Virtualization on 19 May 2016 at 08:03 PM EDT. 14 Comments
Virgil 3D (also sometimes marked as VirGL 3D) is now part of all the key mainline components for supporting 3D acceleration on guest VMs that's then passed onto the host using a pure open-source software stack by creating a virtual 3D GPU inside QEMU. Here are some benchmark numbers.

David Airlie and others at Red Hat have been investing a lot into Virgil 3D and with Fedora 24 all of the pieces are falling into place for easily making use of the feature. If you are unfamiliar with Virgil 3D from our past articles on the matter, visit the project site.

Phoronix reader and forum member Dagger has done some of his own tests using Virgil 3D and comparing the results on the same system to the host. Tests were done with Fedora 24 Beta. Details can be found via this thread for Phoronix Premium members.

He did his OpenGL benchmarking on the host and from the QEMU VM via the Phoronix Test Suite, of course, and uploaded the data to OpenBenchmarking.org.

You can find his initial data via this OpenBenchmarking.org result file. The system table does indicate some differences in the software configuration, but nevertheless the results are wildly different:

There's certainly a lot of overhead to Virgil or other areas to make improvements to with its kernel driver and Gallium3D code.

Some of the results though aren't quite as bad... Then again, there isn't any guest driver yet for Microsoft Windows, so there wouldn't be too much point of using Virgil with your Linux client for gaming when you could just run the game on your Linux host. But at least Virgil is good enough for handling modern Linux desktops!

Continue on at OpenBenchmarking.org to look at this preliminary independent data. It's still on my TODO list to try out Virgil 3D on Fedora 24 and compare the performance with different graphics drivers to that of VMware / VirtualBox using their 3D guest driver implementations. Thanks to Dagger for sharing these early results from his system!
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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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