View Poll Results: Should AMD make kernel and Xorg-server updates for their legacy drivers?

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  • Yes, definitely

    46 51.11%
  • Doesn't matter, we have Open Source!

    33 36.67%
  • No, it will stray the Open Source efforts

    15 16.67%
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Thread: Should AMD make kernel and Xorg-server updates for their legacy drivers?

  1. #1
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    Default Should AMD make kernel and Xorg-server updates for their legacy drivers?

    So, that's the question. I think that making kernel and xorg-server updates to their legacy (starting in a couple of months) drivers won't hurt AMD.

  2. #2
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    I think they should. Even if it's not that frequent; don't do it for every single kernel and xserver release but rather for every other release or something. Then again, people that really need the 3D performance are bound to be running fairly new hardware already, so for people running older hardware the open source drivers would be a much better choice than running a legacy driver that is not updated.

  3. #3
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    I'm not affected, but I think they should update it once in a while. NVidia does :P

  4. #4
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    If I had a legacy card, all that would matter to me was video acceleration and basic 3d acceleration. This is the opensource drivers already able to deliver, so I don't think fglrx is needed. I don't have a legacy card, but at the time it gets legacy, we will probably have very good opensource drivers.

  5. #5
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    While I voted for doesn't matter, It would be nice to see the legacy driver updated to match the current stable Ubuntu/Fedora releases.

    If they are going to bother with an fglrx-legacy then I would think it's the best path to take. Otherwise the driver becomes useless the same month it's released.

    I think people should just use the opensource option for these legacy card though. I've got an ATI Mobility X1400 currently in my laptop (I can swap it out for a the NVIDIA GeForce 7300 Go, but there's no overwhelming performance advantage) and it runs better on the radeon driver than it does on fglrx.

    Not to mention great xrandr support etc. We've got a lot of specs for the AMD/ATI cards and this is moving developments along at a very acceptable pace.

    Good work and my thanks to all involved.

  6. #6

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    My take is this: No

    I'd rather AMD focus engineers on keeping the FGLRX packages optimized for currently shipping hardware. Lets be honest, Radeon x1800's and x1900's really haven't been on the market for a couple years now. Supporting the older cards and chipsets requires developer and engineering time that AMD simply can't afford.

    I'd rather the X.org community, be it Linux, BSD, or whatever, focus on supporting the older hardware with the documentation provided by AMD. I think there are business opportunities to be had for small business's to set up external support and driver development.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by tball View Post
    If I had a legacy card, all that would matter to me was video acceleration and basic 3d acceleration.
    My old X1950XT can do far more than "basic" stuff. I was gaming with that one until quite recently. It's a gaming card. And for gaming cards, the open source drivers suck.


    This is the opensource drivers already able to deliver, so I don't think fglrx is needed.
    Exactly. You "don't think."

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Saist View Post
    My take is this: No

    I'd rather the X.org community, be it Linux, BSD, or whatever, focus on supporting the older hardware with the documentation provided by AMD. I think there are business opportunities to be had for small business's to set up external support and driver development.
    I agree. But the fact is that most of the FOSS driver developers focus on supporting the newer graphic cards, that are also supported by fglrx. And legacy card owners are left in the dark.

    Quote Originally Posted by RealNC View Post
    My old X1950XT can do far more than "basic" stuff. I was gaming with that one until quite recently. It's a gaming card. And for gaming cards, the open source drivers suck.
    Exactly. With both of my ATi cards (Radeon 9550R (R300) and Mobility Radeon X1600 (R500)) I can't play Scorched 3D with radeon driver properly. It works only with minimum details. OTOH, with fglrx it works on both cards like a charm (with medium/full details).

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by RealNC View Post
    My old X1950XT can do far more than "basic" stuff. I was gaming with that one until quite recently. It's a gaming card. And for gaming cards, the open source drivers suck.


    Exactly. You "don't think."
    Neither do you.

    A: if you are a gamer who bought an x1800 or x1900 new, you'd already be budgeting for a better graphics card, or you'd have a better graphics card. Like it or not, the x1900 and x1800 aren't outpacing a "new" gimped HD 4650 (400mhz ram versus 500mhz ram) by that much.

    So knock off the "I'm a gamer and I expect my 3 year old gaming card to still run the newest games with a decent frame-rate." That argument holds no weight.


    B: Okay. the current open-source drivers suck in terms of 3D performance. NOBODY IS ARGUING THAT. Nobody's saying the Open-Source drivers are great for gaming right now. However, all of the existing limitations to the drivers are already recognized. Major changes to the driver structure are under development right now. When those changes are complete, the performance delta's will close up.

    Okay, that is going to take some time to accomplish, it's not going to happen overnight. Most people get that. Many people seem to be willing to help that change happen, either by donating time to code, or hardware / money to people who CAN do the coding. Sadly, Many more see fit to scream and cry in forums rather than get involved in the projects.


    C: Nothing is stopping you from using the existing 8.x or 9.1-9.3 drivers right now. Like or not, I have support for 3D acceleration on a Radeon 9600. I can play City of Heroes or World of Warcraft. I can utilize many games in WINE. I can play Doom3, Quake 4, Eve Online, and so on natively. I can run Compiz-Fusion. I can rotate my screen. I have a fully functional driver, RIGHT NOW.

    Okay, so it doesn't support KMS, whatever that is. It doesn't support X-server 1.6. It doesn't have the latest and greatest 2D support. I can live without that. Those features don't radically change my Linux desktop experience.


    I agree. But the fact is that most of the FOSS driver developers focus on supporting the newer graphic cards, that are also supported by fglrx. And legacy card owners are left in the dark.
    Then get involved. I don't know driver coding, but I'm trying to learn it so that I can at least contribute SOMETHING to the driver development. I have a couple of 9600's, a Radeon 9100 IGP, an x1900 AIW, and an x1800 XT that are still in "daily use systems." I don't want to see support for those to go away, and I doubt others want to see support go away as well. Just from some of the trolling and whining here, it's obvious there IS a market to support the older cards with performance drivers... and the information is out there to get performance equality (not just parity) with the existing proprietary driver.

    I would hope that more people would rise to the challenge and start coding, or learning to code. The more people submitting code, the better the drivers will be.

    As I see it, Legacy owners are only left in the dark, IF THEY WANT TO BE LEFT IN THE DARK.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Saist View Post
    Neither do you.

    A: if you are a gamer who bought an x1800 or x1900 new, you'd already be budgeting for a better graphics card, or you'd have a better graphics card. Like it or not, the x1900 and x1800 aren't outpacing a "new" gimped HD 4650 (400mhz ram versus 500mhz ram) by that much.

    So knock off the "I'm a gamer and I expect my 3 year old gaming card to still run the newest games with a decent frame-rate." That argument holds no weight.
    You're not getting the point. The card runs the games I bought it for perfectly. Did I ever mention that I want to play the latest titles with it? I've got an HD4870 for that.

    The X1950XT runs the older titles, and quite a few newer ones perfectly.

    What's your point exactly?

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