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Graphics: Mesa and More

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Intel Coffee Lake OpenGL Performance On Windows 10 vs. Linux

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For those curious about the state of Intel's open-source Mesa OpenGL driver relative to the company's closed-source Windows OpenGL driver, here are some fresh benchmark results when making use of an Intel Core i7 8700K "Coffee Lake" processor with UHD Graphics 630 and testing from Windows 10 Pro x64 against Ubuntu 16.04.3 LTS, Ubuntu with the Linux 4.16 Git kernel and Mesa 18.1-dev, and then Intel's own Clear Linux distribution.

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Graphics: Chai, Nouveau, Mesa and More

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  • Development On The Chai Mali T700 Open-Source GPU Driver To Resume

    Last year we covered the work on the project "Chai" as an open-source, reverse-engineered driver for Mali T700 series. After a hiatus, the lead developer is back working on the project.

    The developer on the project was previously just known as "Cafe Beverage", but this developer has come out today as Alyssa Rosenzweig.

  • Nouveau's NIR Support Inches Closer To TGSI Quality

    Longtime Nouveau contributor Karol Herbst joined Red Hat at the end of last year where his current task is on NIR intermediate representation support for Nouveau as part of bringing SPIR-V compute support to this open-source NVIDIA Linux driver.

  • Intel GLSL On-Disk Shader Cache Enabled By Default

    For Mesa 18.0 is the initial Intel shader cache support for archiving compiled GLSL shaders on-disk to speed up the load times of subsequent game loads and other benefits. For the Mesa 18.0 release the functionality isn't enabled by default but it will be for Mesa 18.1.

  • Xorgproto 2018.3 Brings RandR Leasing + Non-Desktop Monitors

    Xorgproto debuted earlier this month as a centralized package of all X.Org protocol headers that used to be versioned and developed independently. Given the slower development now of the xorg-server and lots of the protocols being intertwined, they are now all bundled together. Tuesday marked the 2018.3 release with the new additions for Keith Packard's SteamVR Linux infrastructure work.

    Xorgproto 2018.3 offers up the protocol changes for the X.Org Server work that Keith Packard has been doing on improving the virtual reality head-mounted display (VR HMD) support for Linux systems, particularly around SteamVR. The X.Org protocol changes needed are supporting RandR leasing of outputs and also non-desktop monitor handling, so the VR HMD won't be treated as a conventional display and the Linux desktop systems then attempt to make use of it thinking it's just another HDMI/DP display.

  • Even With AMDGPU DC, HDMI/DP Audio Isn't Working Out For All Radeon Linux Users

    While the newly-released Raven Ridge APUs could make for nice HTPC systems given the number of compatible mini-ITX/micro-ATX motherboards and these 65 Watt APUs offering Zen CPU cores with Vega graphics, besides the current problematic Raven Ridge graphics support, there are still some broader AMDGPU DC audio problems for newer graphics cards.

    Phoronix reader Fred wrote in today to call attention to the AMDGPU DC audio situation. While AMDGPU DC was merged in Linux 4.15 and provides HDMI/DP audio support to the past few generations of Radeon GPUs on this new display code stack, not all audio formats play nicely.

Benchmarking Amazon EC2 Instances vs. Various Intel/AMD CPUs

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Given the recent performance changes following the Spectre/Meltdown CPU vulnerability mitigation and having just wrapped up some fresh CPU bare metal benchmarks as part of that testing as well as the recent AMD Raven Ridge launch, I've carried out a fresh round this week of benchmarks on various Amazon EC2 on-demand instance types compared to a number of bare metal Intel and AMD processors in looking at how the compute performance compares.

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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.

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More in Tux Machines

Programming: Python 2.*, Functional Computation, and Plagiarism in CS

  • 1.5 Year Warning: Python2 will be End of Lifed
    The end of upstream Python 2.7 support will be January 1, 2020 (2020-01-01) and the Fedora Project is working out what to do with it. As Fedora 29 would be released in 2019-11 and would get 1.5 years of support, the last release which would be considered supportable would be the upcoming release of Fedora 28. This is why the current Python maintainers are looking to orphan python2. They have made a list of the packages that would be affected by this and have started a discussion on the Fedora development lists, but people who only see notes of this from blogs or LWN posts may not have seen it yet.
  • Why is functional programming seen as the opposite of OOP rather than an addition to it?

    So: both OOP and functional computation can be completely compatible (and should be!). There is no reason to munge state in objects, and there is no reason to invent “monads” in FP. We just have to realize that “computers are simulators” and figure out what to simulate.

  • Why we still can’t stop plagiarism in undergraduate computer science

    The most important goal is to keep the course fair for students who do honest work. Instructors must assign grades that accurately reflect performance. A student who grapples with a problem — becoming a stronger programmer in the process — should never receive a lower grade than one who copies and pastes.


    University administrators should communicate their support. Instructors should know that, not only will they suffer no retaliation, but that the university encourages them to enforce university policies. This might require administrators to acknowledge the inconvenient truth of widespread plagiarism.

Debian: Turris Omnia With Debian, ClojureSYNC, Debconf 2018

  • Using the switch on Turris Omnia with Debian
    After installing Debian on Turris Omnia there are a few more steps needed to make use of the network switch. The Armada 385 CPU provides three network interfaces. Two are connected to the switch (but only one of them is used to "talk" to the switch), and one is routed directly to the WAN port.
  • ClojureSYNC Talk Resources
  • Debconf 2018, MATE 1.2.0, libqalculate transition etc
    First up is news on Debconf 2018 which will be held in Hsinchu, Taiwan. Apparently, the CFP or Call for Proposals was made just a few days ago and I probably forgot to share about it. Registration has also been opened now. The only thing most people have to figure out is how to get a system-generated certificate, make sure to have an expiry date, I usually have a year, make it at least 6 months as you would need to put up your proposal for contention and let the content-team decide it on the proposal merit. This may at some point move from alioth to salsa as the alioth service is going away. The best advice I can give is to put your proposal in and keep reworking/polishing it till the end date for applications is near. At the same time do not over commit yourself. From a very Indian perspective and somebody who has been to one debconf, you can think of the debconf as a kind of ‘khumb‘ Mela or gathering as you will. You can definitely network with all the topics and people you care for, but the most rewarding are those talks which were totally unplanned for. Also it does get crazy sometime so it’s nice if you are able to have some sane time for yourself even if it just a 5-10 minute walk.

Mozilla: Facebook-Mozilla Rift, MDN, No More Notifications (If You Want)

  • Mozilla stops Facebook advertising, demands privacy changes
    It’s probably not top of Mark Zuckerberg’s worry list this week but Mozilla Corporation, developer of the Firefox browser, is officially unhappy with Facebook.
  • Results of the MDN “Competitive Content Analysis” SEO experiment
    The next SEO experiment I’d like to discuss results for is the MDN “Competitive Content Analysis” experiment. In this experiment, performed through December into early January, involved selecting two of the top search terms that resulted in MDN being included in search results—one of them where MDN is highly-placed but not at #1, and one where MDN is listed far down in the search results despite having good content available. The result is a comparison of the quality of our content and our SEO against other sites that document these technology areas. With that information in hand, we can look at the competition’s content and make decisions as to what changes to make to MDN to help bring us up in the search rankings.
  • No More Notifications (If You Want)
    Online, your attention is priceless. That’s why every site in the universe wants permission to send you notifications about new stuff. It can be distracting at best and annoying at worst. The latest version of Firefox for desktop lets you block those requests and many others.

EUPL planned actions

A revised set of guidelines and recommendations on the use of the open source licence EUPL v1.2 published by the Commission on 19 May 2017 will be developed, involving the DIGIT unit B.3 (Reusable Solutions) and the JRC 1.4 (Joint Research Centre – Intellectual Property and Technology Transfer). The existing licence wizard will be updated. New ways of promoting public administrations' use of open source will be investigated and planned (such as hackathons or app challenges on open source software). The target date for the release of this set of guidelines on the use of the European Public Licence EUPL v1.2, including a modified Licence Wizard, is planned Q2 2018. Read more