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Graphics: Nouveau Benchmarks, H.264, Mesa and Libinput

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Graphics/Benchmarks
  • The NVIDIA vs. Open-Source Nouveau Linux Driver Benchmarks For Summer 2018

    It has been some months since last delivering any benchmarks of Nouveau, the open-source, community-driven for NVIDIA GPUs. The reason for not having any Nouveau benchmarks recently has largely been due to lack of major progress, at least on the GeForce desktop GPU side, while NVIDIA has continued to contribute on the Tegra side. For those wondering how the current performance is of this driver that started out more than a decade ago via reverse-engineering, here are some benchmarks of the latest open-source Nouveau and NVIDIA Linux graphics drivers on Ubuntu.

  • H.264 Decoding Tackled For Reverse-Engineered "Cedrus" Allwinner Video Decode Driver

    The Bootlin (formerly Free Electrons) developers working on the Cedrus open-source, reverse-engineered Allwinner video decode driver have posted their patches for enabling H.264 video decoding.

    Earlier versions of their Sunxi-Cedrus driver patches had just supported MPEG-2 with other codecs to be tackled, but hitting the kernel mailing list this week were their patches for enabling H.264 decoding on Allwinner hardware.

  • More Vega M Performance Numbers Surfacing, Linux State Looking Good

    The performance of the Intel Core i7-8809G "Kabylake G" processor with onboard Radeon "Vega M" graphics are looking quite good under Linux now that the support has been squared away.

  • Mesa RadeonSI Lands Possible Vega/Raven Performance Improvement

    Earlier this month AMD's Marek Olšák posted RadeonSI patches for a scissor workaround affecting GFX9/Vega GPUs including Raven Ridge, which were based upon a RADV driver workaround already merged that helped affected games by up to ~11%. A revised version of that patch is now in Mesa 18.2 Git.

  • libinput and its device quirks files

    This post does not describe a configuration system. If that's all you care about, read this post here and go be angry at someone else. Anyway, with that out of the way let's get started.

    For a long time, libinput has supported model quirks (first added in Apr 2015). These model quirks are bitflags applied to some devices so we can enable special behaviours in the code. Model flags can be very specific ("this is a Lenovo x230 Touchpad") or generic ("This is a trackball") and it just depends on what the specific behaviour is that we need. The x230 touchpad for example has a custom pointer acceleration but trackballs are marked so they get some config options mice don't have/need.

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Graphics: NVIDIA and Gallium3D

  • NVIDIA Vulkan Beta Adds New KHR_driver_properties & KHR_shader_atomic_int64
    Not to be confused with the new NVIDIA Linux/Windows drivers that should be out today for RTX 2070/2080 "Turing" support and also initial RTX ray-tracing support, there is also out a new Vulkan beta driver this morning. The NVIDIA 396.54.06 driver is this new Vulkan beta and as implied by the version number is still on the current stable branch and not in the Turing era. But this driver release is quite exciting as it does bring support for two new extensions... These extensions are very fresh and not yet in the official Vulkan specification: VK_KHR_driver_properties and VK_KHR_shader_atomic_int64.
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    NVIDIA's review/performance embargo has now lifted on the GeForce RTX 2080 series ahead of the cards shipping tomorrow. I should have out initial Linux benchmarks later today, assuming Linux driver availability. As wrote about yesterday, just yesterday I ended up receiving the GeForce RTX 2080 Ti for Linux benchmarking. But, unfortunately, no Linux driver yet... But I am told it will be posted publicly soon with the Windows driver. Assuming that happens within the hours ahead, I'll still have initial RTX 2080 Ti benchmarks on Ubuntu Linux out by today's end -- thanks to the Phoronix Test Suite and recently wrapping up other NVIDIA/AMD GPU comparison tests on the current drivers.
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    One of the talks we are most interested in at XDC2018 is on the Intel "Iris" Gallium3D driver we discovered last month was in development. We stumbled across the Iris Gallium3D driver that's been in development for months as a potential replacement to their "i965" classic Mesa driver. But they haven't really detailed their intentions in full, but we should learn more next week. This is particularly exciting the prospects of an official Intel Gallium3D driver as the company is also expected to introduce their discrete GPUs beginning in 2020 and this new driver could be part of that plan.

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