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Graphics: Nouveau, Wayland's Weston and Libinput

Filed under
Graphics/Benchmarks
Linux
  • The Open-Source NVIDIA "Nouveau" Driver Gets A Batch Of Fixes For Linux 5.3

    Originally on Thursday was finally the Nouveau-next 5.3 pull request that offered improvements to the display color management, fixes to Secure Boot on newer hardware, and Turing TU116 mode-setting support. But that was rejected by the DRM maintainers for being way too late as usually the cut-off for new feature material is when hitting RC6 on the previous cycle, just not days before the end of the current merge window. Not that those changes were all too exciting or notable, but this pushes back the color management and other work to Linux 5.4.

    Nouveau DRM maintainer Ben Skeggs of Red Hat as a result today sent in Nouveau-fixes 5.3. This pull request has support still for the TU116 GPU since that shouldn't regress any existing support as well as having fixes around KMS, a memory leak, and a few other basic fixes.

  • Wayland's Weston Lands A Pipewire Plug-In As New Remote Desktop Streaming Option

    Wayland's Weston compositor for the past year has provided a remoting plug-in for virtual output streaming that was built atop RTP/GStreamer. Now though a new plug-in has landed in the Weston code-base making use of Red Hat's promising PipeWire project.

    The PipeWire plug-in was merged into Weston today and is similar to the GStreamer-powered remoting plug-in but instead leverages PipeWire. The compositor's frames are exported to PipeWire and the same virtual output API is shared between these plug-ins. The virtual outputs can be configured using the weston.ini configuration file. Any PipeWire client in turn can read these frames.

  • Libinput 1.14 RC Arrives With Better Thumb Detection & Dell Canvas Totem Support

    Linux input expert Peter Hutterer of Red Hat shipped the much anticipated release candidate today for libinput 1.14, the open-source input handling library used by both X.Org and Wayland systems.

  • libinput 1.13.901
    The first RC for libinput 1.14 is now available.
    
    We have new and improved thumb detection for touchpads, thanks to Matt
    Mayfield. On Clickpad devices this should make interactions where a thumb is
    resting on the touchpad or dropped during an interaction more reliable. A
    summary of the changes can be found here:
    https://who-t.blogspot.com/2019/07/libinputs-new-thumb-detection-code.html
    
    The Dell Canvas Totem is now supported by libinput. It is exposed as a new
    tool type through the tablet interface along with two new axes. Note that
    this is only low-level support, the actual integration of the totem needs
    Wayland protocol changes and significant changes in all applications that
    want to make use of it. A summary of the changes can be found here:
    https://who-t.blogspot.com/2019/06/libinput-and-dell-canvas-totem.html
    
    Touch-capable tablets now tie both devices together for rotation. If you set
    the tablet to left-handed, the touchpad will be rotated along with the
    tablet. Note that this does not affect the left-handed-ness of the touchpad,
    merely the rotation. 
    
    Tablet proximity out handling for tablets that are unreliably sending
    proximity out events is now always timeout-based. It is no longer necessary
    to add per-device quirks to enable this feature and it is completely
    transparent on devices that work correctly anyway. A summar of the
    changes can be found here:
    https://who-t.blogspot.com/2019/06/libinput-and-tablet-proximity-handling.html
    
    Tablets that send duplicate tools (BTN_TOOL_PEN and BTN_TOOL_ERASER) now
    ignore the latter. This is an intermediate fix only but at least makes those
    tablets more usable than they are now. Issue #259 is the tracker for this
    particular behaviour if you are affected by it.
    
    The handling of kernel fuzz has been slightly improved. Where our udev rule
    fails to reset the fuzz on the kernel device, we disable the hysteresis and
    rely on the kernel now to handle it. Previously our hysteresis would take
    effect on top of the kernel's, causing nonresponsive behaviour.
    
    Note to distribitors: the python-evdev dependency has been dropped, the
    tools that used it are now using python-libevdev instead.
    
    And of course a random assortment of fixes, improvements, etc. Many thanks
    to all contributors and testers.
    
    As usual, the git shortlog is below.
    

Network transparency with Wayland

  • Network transparency with Wayland

    Three large changes have been completed this week. The first is a change to the wire format used for waypipe. The previous protocol, dating back almost to the start of this project, sent a single large message containing a series of subblocks, each of which either contained Wayland protocol data, indicated that a new file descriptor was sent by the connected Wayland program, or provided all the information needed to update a given file descriptor. These file descriptor update messages used a 16-byte header containing the object id, size, type, and a very overloaded metadata field. Furthermore, the content following the header was sometimes context-dependent. For example, the first data transfer to replicate a shared memory buffer sent its initial data, while all successive messages sent a diff relative to the previous state. Because so much in the update messages was implicit, the code acquired a few unusual workarounds; for example, size extensions to a shared memory buffer were only supported by assuming the newly extended region to have contained all zeros and then sending a diff relative to that state.

    The replacement wire format protocol operates with much smaller transfer units, with distinct types for the various file operations that used to be combined into a single generic header. To keep individual message sizes small, file data update operations can be split into distinct messages corresponding to different shards of a buffer. While having distinct messages for each operation does very slightly increase the bandwidth needed for a connection, it ensures that operations can be performed as soon as the corresponding message block arrives; a remote pipe or video-type DMABUF can be created before the data for its contents has fully arrived.

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Android Leftovers

KMyMoney 5.0.6 released

The KMyMoney development team today announces the immediate availability of version 5.0.6 of its open source Personal Finance Manager. Another maintenance release is ready: KMyMoney 5.0.6 comes with some important bugfixes. As usual, problems have been reported by our users and the development team fixed some of them in the meantime. The result of this effort is the brand new KMyMoney 5.0.6 release. Despite even more testing we understand that some bugs may have slipped past our best efforts. If you find one of them, please forgive us, and be sure to report it, either to the mailing list or on bugs.kde.org. Read more

Games: Don't Starve Together, Cthulhu Saves the World, EVERSPACE 2 and Stadia

  • Don't Starve Together has a big free update adding in boats and a strange island

    Klei Entertainment have given the gift of new features to their co-op survival game Don't Starve Together, with the Turn of Tides update now available. Taking a little inspiration from the Shipwrecked DLC available for the single-player version Don't Starve, this new free update enables you to build a boat to carry you and other survivors across the sea. Turn of Tides is the first part of a larger update chain they're calling Return of Them, so I'm excited to see what else is going to come to DST.

  • Cthulhu Saves the World has an unofficial Linux port available

    In response to an announcement to a sequel to Cthulhu Saves the World, Ethan Lee AKA flibitijibibo has made a unofficial port for the original and a few other previously Windows-only games. As a quick reminder FNA is a reimplementation of the proprietary XNA API created by Micrsosoft and quite a few games were made with that technology. We’ve gotten several ports thanks to FNA over the years though Ethan himself has mostly moved on to other projects like working on FAudio and Steam Play.

  • EVERSPACE 2 announced, with more of a focus on exploration and it will release for Linux

    EVERSPACE is probably one of my absolute favourite space shooters from the last few years, so I'm extremely excited to see EVERSPACE 2 be announced and confirmed for Linux. For the Linux confirmation, I reached out on Twitter where the developer replied with "#Linux support scheduled for full release in 2021!".

  • Google reveal more games with the latest Stadia Connect, including Cyberpunk 2077

    Today, Google went back to YouTube to show off an impressive list of games coming to their Stadia game streaming service, which we already know is powered by Debian Linux and Vulkan. As a reminder, Google said not to see Stadia as if it was the "Netflix of games", as it's clearly not. Stadia Base requires you to buy all your games as normal, with Stadia Pro ($9.99 monthly) giving you a trickle of free games to access on top of 4K and surround sound support.