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AMD Graphics Open Source Linux

Open Radeon 3D Driver Runs At 60~70% of Proprietary Driver Speed 245

Posted by timothy
from the makes-me-think-about-another-desktop-box dept.
An anonymous reader writes "AMD's Radeon HD 6000 series open-source Gallium3D driver for Linux is now working and running at 60~70% (in some cases, 80%) of the speed of the official proprietary 'Catalyst' driver. This is a big speed improvement in Mesa/Gallium3D compared to the times when the performance was crippling or even just a few years ago when AMD didn't support open-source drivers. When will NVIDIA change ways?"
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Open Radeon 3D Driver Runs At 60~70% of Proprietary Driver Speed

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  • A Grain of Salt (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Ltap (1572175) on Friday July 15, 2011 @08:47AM (#36773832) Homepage
    Remember, it's Phoronix.
  • Re:Why change? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ThePhilips (752041) on Friday July 15, 2011 @08:52AM (#36773874) Homepage Journal

    Because proprietary drivers traditionally have minor bugs and annoyances which are getting fixed like never. Not everybody is craving for the top fps on the new games - many want speedy 2D and video without glitches. I'm not sure that OSS drivers would be better in the respect, yet IMO chances are better with two alternative drivers available.

    Also, OSS drivers for both nVidia and ATI would likely exchange patches or probably reuse many common features, making them more compatible to each other, thus reducing number of surprises when something works on ATI driver but not on nVidia's.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 15, 2011 @08:58AM (#36773936)

    It's not like you're going to be doing alot of gameing on those machines. So honestly. who gives a shit if it's not at 100% of its speed...

    Oh right. delusional geeks. carry on.

  • Re:So... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by GreatBunzinni (642500) on Friday July 15, 2011 @09:08AM (#36774024)

    ...it's only advantage is being Open?

    I can see how many people may not see a great cost/benefits ratio there...

    Being open means that these drivers won't simply go away once the product line is deprecated in favour of the newest and coolest graphics card, and that it will be able to receive improvements and bug fixes essentially until the last working piece of hardware dies off. Being open also means that it will be able to provide support for this Radeon graphics cards in other platforms besides the officially sanctioned ones, such as Windows and Linux. Being open also provides a way to provide competition for the people AMD employs to develop their official graphics card drivers, because if an open driver developed by amateurs on their spare time happens to be nearly as good or even better then they may as well be out of a job, and they can't have that. Being open also means that, if the open drivers mature enough so that they are comparable to AMD's official offering, then it will be in AMD's best interests to get directly involved in the development of these open drivers and even abandon their proprietary offering in favour of this project.

    And, obviously, if these open drivers represent a business success story to AMD then you can bet that this will spread out to other companies, and everyone who used windows and had to deal with hardware with support problems certainly knows what a PitA it is to be tied to proprietary drivers which are crap.

  • Re:So... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Bert64 (520050) <bert@slashd[ ]fi ... m ['ot.' in gap]> on Friday July 15, 2011 @09:31AM (#36774280) Homepage

    And yet the open driver supports them anyway.
    The more widespread open source becomes, the more practical alternative architectures become.

  • Re:So... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Thomas Charron (1485) <twaffle.gmail@com> on Friday July 15, 2011 @10:00AM (#36774638) Homepage

    ...it's only advantage is being Open?

    I can see how many people may not see a great cost/benefits ratio there...

    Being open means that these drivers won't simply go away once the product line is deprecated in favour of the newest and coolest graphics card, and that it will be able to receive improvements and bug fixes essentially until the last working piece of hardware dies off.

    Wewt! I can get speed improvements! Now, at their current rate or increase, it will only take 5 years for the driver to be able to perform at the same level as the proprietary driver.

    Being open also means that it will be able to provide support for this Radeon graphics cards in other platforms besides the officially sanctioned ones, such as Windows and Linux. Being open also provides a way to provide competition for the people AMD employs to develop their official graphics card drivers, because if an open driver developed by amateurs on their spare time happens to be nearly as good or even better then they may as well be out of a job, and they can't have that.

    If, by 'competition' you mean something which performs sub par to your own drivers, I guess there's a point there somewhere.

    Being open also means that, if the open drivers mature enough so that they are comparable to AMD's official offering, then it will be in AMD's best interests to get directly involved in the development of these open drivers and even abandon their proprietary offering in favour of this project. And, obviously, if these open drivers represent a business success story to AMD then you can bet that this will spread out to other companies, and everyone who used windows and had to deal with hardware with support problems certainly knows what a PitA it is to be tied to proprietary drivers which are crap.

    So, a product which is developed for years and has only recently achieved 60% of what the commercial driver can do *isnt* crap.

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