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Graphics: Wine-Vulkan, Valve Work on Drivers, and Mesa 17.3.5 "Emergency Release"

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  • New Wine-Vulkan Patches Are Under Review

    Roderick Colenbrander's Wine-Vulkan work for Vulkan infrastructure support under Wine has been updated and is ready for review, making these initial bits a candidate for soon being incorporated into mainline Wine.

    Roderick has spent the past few months on the Vulkan infrastructure for Wine as a Vulkan layer with ICD driver support rather than the older Vulkan library (non-ICD implementation) found in Wine-Staging.

  • Vulkan 1.0.69 Released With Fixes & New AMD Buffer Marker Extension

    While waiting to see what Khronos could have in store for GDC 2018 next month around Vulkan, today marks the Vulkan 1.0.69 point release availability.

    With Vulkan 1.0.68 having shipped in the middle of January, there are a fair amount of documentation improvements/fixes over the past month. As usual, addressing issues with the documentation reflects a majority of the changes for these point releases. Of the issues addressed in Vulkan 1.0.69, it's mostly a collection of over a dozen minor problems.

  • Vega Gets Its Last Fix For Dawn of War III On Linux With Vulkan

    Samuel Pitoiset of Valve has worked through the last of the Dawn of War 3 issues for Radeon Vega GPUs with the RADV Vulkan driver.

  • RadeonSI Now Offers NIR Shader Cache Support

    Earlier this month Valve Linux GPU driver developer Timothy Arceri landed NIR shader caching support within the Gallium3D Mesa state tracker as an alternative to the existing TGSI IR caching support. Arceri has now worked through implementing this NIR cache support for the RadeonSI driver.

  • mesa 17.3.5

    This is a emergency release fixing major a issue in the RADV driver.

  • Mesa 17.3.5 Released To Fix A RADV Bug

    While Mesa 17.3.4 was just released a few days ago with 90+ changes, Mesa 17.3.5 is now available as a quick follow-up release due to a serious bug.

An Early Look At Linux 4.16 Performance On Five Systems

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Here are some preliminary benchmarks of the Linux 4.16 development kernel compared to Linux 4.15 stable on five different systems.

Last week I began testing out the Linux 4.16 kernel on a few different boxes and it's been going rather well (sans the ongoing AMD Raven Ridge Linux issues...). For some initial Linux 4.16 kernel benchmarks I have results today to share for a Core i5 6600K, Core i7 6800K, Xeon E3-1280 v5, Core i9 7980XE, and Ryzen 7 1800X as a few of the available boxes for testing. Tests on other hardware and a greater variety of tests will be coming in the days and weeks ahead as Linux 4.16 continues to stabilize.

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Graphics: Nouveau, Mesa and VESA

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  • Nouveau Gets ARB_bindless_texture Support For Maxwell & Newer

    Back for Mesa 18.0 there was OpenGL bindless textures for Kepler GPUs on the open-source NVIDIA "Nouveau" driver while now for Mesa 18.1 that support is in place for Maxwell GPUs and newer.

    Bindless texture support is important for "AZDO" purposes for approaching zero driver overhead with OpenGL. ARB_bindless_texture reduces the API/GL driver overhead of resource bindings and allows accessing textures without needing to first bind/re-bind them.

  • Marek Working Towards Even Lower SGPR Register Usage

    Yesterday well known open-source AMD developer Marek Olšák landed his RadeonSI 32-bit pointers support for freeing up some scalar general purpose registers (SGPRs) and he's continued with a new patch series to alleviate register usage even more.

  • Libdrm 2.4.90 Released With Meson Build System, AMDGPU & Intel Improvements

    Marek Olšák on Saturday released the big libdrm 2.4.90 DRM library update that sits between Mesa and other GPU user-space components and the kernel's Direct Rendering Manager code.

  • Mesa Git Lands RadeonSI 32-bit Pointers Support

    At the start of the new year Marek Olšák of AMD posted a set of patches for 32-bit GPU pointers in RadeonSI. That work has now landed in mainline Mesa Git.

  • xf86-video-vesa 2.4.0

    Nothing terribly exciting, but enough bug fixes to justify a release.

  • VESA X.Org Driver Sees First Update In Three Years

    Should you find yourself using the xf86-video-vesa DDX for one reason or another, a new release is now available and it's the first in three years.

    The xf86-video-vesa 2.4.0 X.Org driver was released this week with the handful of commits that came in since v2.3.4 was tagged three years ago, it's been eight years already since xf86-video-vesa 2.3.0. For most users, xf86-video-vesa is just used in select fallback instances when your main DDX driver fails but even still these days KMS is pretty solid with xf86-video-modesetting, fbdev and other DDX drivers working well, etc.

Graphics: glTF 2, Graphics Compiler, DRI3

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  • Khronos Adds Draco Geometry Compression To glTF 2.0

    Khronos' glTF transmission format for 3D scenes and models continues getting better. This 3D format has seen adoption by countless applications and engines and even usage within Microsoft products. Khronos' latest advancement to glTF 2.0 is a compression extension.

  • Intel Open-Sources LLVM Graphics Compiler, Compute Runtime With OpenCL 2.1+

    Now it's clear why Intel hasn't been working on the Beignet code-base in months as they have been quietly working on a new and better OpenCL stack and run-time! On open-source Intel OpenCL you can now have OpenCL 2.1 while OpenCL 2.2 support is on the way.

    Intel by way of their Open-Source Technology Center quietly open-sourced a new compute runtime as well as an LLVM-based graphics compiler. Thanks to a sharp-eyed Phoronix reader for spotting and pointing out to us this new Intel OpenCL stack that hasn't really received any attention at all yet.

  • DRI3 v1.1 Updated by Collabora For Modifiers & Multi-Plane Support

    As a sign that DRI3 v1.1 is hopefully ready to go, Louis-Francis Ratté-Boulianne of Collabora on Friday sent out his latest set of patches adding modifiers and multi-plane support to the Direct Rendering Infrastructure.

    DRI3 v1.1 has been a long, ongoing project for this first major addition to the DRI3 infrastructure. Namely there is support for explicit format modifiers and pixmaps backed by multi-planar buffers. Collabora has also already been working on some experimental DRI3 v1.2 patches for DMA fences, which originally was part of the v1.1 patches, but then pushed back to their own series.

AMD Raven Ridge Graphics On Linux vs. Lower-End NVIDIA / AMD GPUs

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This week we have delivered the first Linux benchmarks of the OpenGL/Vulkan graphics capabilities of AMD's new Raven Ridge desktop APUs with the Vega 8 on the Ryzen 3 2200G an the Vega 11 on Ryzen 5 2400G. Those tests have included comparisons to the integrated graphics capabilities of Intel processors as well as older AMD Kaveri APUs. For those interested in seeing how the Raven Ridge Vega graphics compare to lower-end Radeon and GeForce discrete graphics cards, here are those first Linux benchmarks.

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Graphics: Mir, NVIDIA, AMD, and Mesa 17.3.4

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  • Mir 0.30 Released With Improved Wayland Support

    Canonical's Mir team has released Mir v0.30 as the latest version of this display server that for the past year has been retooling itself with Wayland protocol support.

    With today's Mir 0.30 release, they have continued on their Wayland conquest and are offering better support for Wayland protocols. Some of the Wayland changes in Mir 0.30 include a client connection change to allow Wayland clients to work on Unity 8, a keyboard state change to fix switching between clients, multiple crash fixes, and experimental support for the XDG-Shell v6 protocol.

  • NVIDIA Preparing Upstream Linux Kernel Support For The Tegra Xavier SoC

    NVIDIA has begun work on sending out patches for upstreaming Tegra194 "Xavier" SoC support within the Linux kernel.

    Xavier is NVIDIA's successor to the Tegra P1 and will begin sampling this quarter. Xavier makes use of a custom ARMv8 eight-core CPU, Volta-based graphics with 512 CUDA cores, integration of the DLA tensor processing unit, and is manufactured on a 12nm FinFET process. Xavier should be a mighty powerful SoC for their self-driving car systems and other "edge computing" use-cases.

  • AMD May Have Accidentally Outed Vulkan 1.1

    AMD on Wednesday released the Radeon Pro Software Enterprise Edition 18.Q1 for Linux driver. It really isn't noticeable for its official changes, but does claim to advertise Vulkan 1.1 support.

  • mesa 17.3.4

    Mesa 17.3.4 is now available.

  • Mesa 17.3.4 Released With 90+ Changes

    While Mesa 18.0 should be released in the days ahead as the latest feature release to Mesa 3D, backporting of fixes/improvements to Mesa 17.3 isn't letting up. For those using this stable series from last quarter, Mesa 17.3.4 is out today with nearly 100 changes.

Graphics: Wayland Protocols 1.13, Mesa, AMD

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  • wayland-protocols 1.13

    wayland-protocols 1.13 is now available.

  • Wayland Protocols 1.13 Introduces New Input Timestamp Protocol

    Jonas Ådahl on Wednesday announced Wayland-Protocols 1.13, the collection of stable and unstable protocols to Wayland.

    The single major change to Wayland Protocols 1.13 is the introduction of the input-timestamps protocol. This protocol extension is for providing high resolution timestamps for input events.

  • Intel's Mesa Driver Gets Patches For New EXT_shader_framebuffer_fetch

    Open-source Intel driver developer Francisco Jerez has sent out a set of 15 patches implementing a new version of the EXT_shader_framebuffer_fetch OpenGL extension.

    EXT_shader_framebuffer_fetch in its current form on the OpenGL registry is for OpenGL ES 2.0+ and allows a fragment shader to read existing frame-buffer data as input. This is intended to allow for more advanced compositing operations.

  • Marek Updates OpenGL 3.1 ARB_compatibility Support For Mesa

    Last October well known open-source AMD driver developer Marek Olšák began work on OpenGL compatibility profile support for Mesa. This work is about OpenGL 3.1 with ARB_compatibility support, something generally relevant for workstation OpenGL users and one of the few remaining advantages of AMD's current proprietary OpenGL driver.

  • AMDVLK/XGL Gets Vega Enhancements, LLPC Optimizations

    AMD developers working on their official, cross-platform XGL/AMDVLK driver code have pushed out another batch of changes for benefiting their official AMD Vulkan Linux driver.

    The first noted change is "enhance GFX9 support", in other words, the Vega GPU support should be in better shape but they didn't provide any specifics. This is good news considering my latest AMDVLK vs. RADV Vulkan driver testing from this weekend still showed several areas where the AMDVLK driver was lagging behind RADV in Radeon RX Vega 64 performance or even not working for some games.

AMD Ryzen 3 2200G + Ryzen 5 2400G Linux CPU Performance, 21-Way Intel/AMD Comparison

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Yesterday I posted some initial Linux benchmarks of the Ryzen 5 2400G Raven Ridge APU when looking at the Vega 11 graphics, but for those curious about the CPU performance potential of the Ryzen 5 2400G and its ~$100 Ryzen 3 2200G sibling, here are our first CPU benchmarks of these long-awaited AMD APUs. These two current Raven Ridge desktop APUs are compared to a total of 21 different Intel and AMD processors dating back to older Kaveri APUs and FX CPUs and Ivy Bridge on the Intel side.

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Also: Phoronix Test Suite 7.8 Officially Released For Open-Source, Cross-OS Benchmarking

AMD Vega 8 Graphics Performance On Linux With The Ryzen 3 2200G

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Yesterday I posted the initial Ryzen 5 2400G Vega 11 Linux graphics benchmarks while for your viewing please today -- as well as this morning's 21-way Intel/AMD CPU Linux comparison that featured these new Raven Ridge APUs -- the results now completed are initial OpenGL and Vulkan performance figures for the Vega 8 graphics found on the Ryzen 3 2200G.

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Ryzen 5 2400G Radeon Vega Linux OpenGL/Vulkan Gaming Benchmarks

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Here are our initial performance figures for the Vega graphics found on the newly-released Ryzen 5 2400G "Raven Ridge" APU under Linux and testing both OpenGL and Vulkan graphics benchmarks. CPU tests as well as benchmarks of the Ryzen 3 2200G under Linux are forthcoming on Phoronix.

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Here’s GNOME 3.28 – See What’s New

The latest version of GNOME 3 has been released today. Version 3.28 contains six months of work and new features by the GNOME community and comes with many improvements and new features. One major new feature for this release is automatic downloading of operating systems in Boxes, which takes the work out of creating and running virtual machines – just pick the operating system that you want to create a virtual machine of, and Boxes will now download and install it for you. Other highlights include improvements to the Calendar and Contacts applications, the ability to star files and folders in the Files application, and improved support for Thunderbolt 3 and Bluetooth LE devices. GNOME’s default UI font has also been overhauled to be more attractive and easy to read, and the on-screen keyboard has been rewritten to be more reliable and has layouts for a number of different locales. Read more Also: textures and paintables

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Test driving 4 open source music players and more

In my last article, I described my latest music problem: I need an additional stage of amplification to make proper use of my new phono cartridge. While my pre-amplifier contains a phono stage, its gain is only suitable for cartridges that output about 5mV, whereas my new cartridge has a nominal output of 0.4mV. Based on my investigation, I liked the looks of the Muffsy phono kits, so I ordered the head amplifier, the power supply, and the back panel. I also needed to obtain a case to hold the boards and the back panel, available online from many vendors. Muffsy does not sell the “wall wart” necessary to power the unit, so I ordered one of those from a supplier in California. Finally, inspecting my soldering iron, solder “sucker,” and solder, I’ve realized I need to do better—so a bit more shopping, online or local, is in order there. Finally, for those, like me, whose soldering skills may be rusty and perhaps were not all that great to begin with, Muffsy kindly offers links to two instructional videos. Read more