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Thread: AMD Catalyst 8.12 Linux Driver

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  1. #1
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    Default AMD Catalyst 8.12 Linux Driver

    Phoronix: AMD Catalyst 8.12 Linux Driver

    This afternoon AMD has released its final Catalyst Linux driver update for the year. It has been a couple months now since there has been anything exciting in one of these Linux driver updates, but what's there in store this time around? Is there X-Video Bitstream Acceleration finally available? Sadly, no. But there is improved video playback support in a composited environment and Hybrid CrossFire support.

    http://www.phoronix.com/vr.php?view=13231

  2. #2
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    Default Ah! so glad to be free of the closed source nastiness

    I just wanted to say how wonderfully pleased I am with the Radeon driver shipped with Intrepid. No flicker, reliable suspend, compiz goodness - wonderful! No longer do I wait with baited breath for ATI driver 8.(n+1).

    I feel truly sorry for all those people that have a card unsupported by the open driver.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by heng View Post
    I feel truly sorry for all those people that have a card unsupported by the open driver.
    Thnk you. I appreciate that.

  4. #4
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    One question to Michael:

    What do you mean by:

    ...there is improved video playback support in a composited environment ...
    could you explain this clearly?

  5. #5
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    I will of course try when I get home, but does anyone know if the 'no glxfbconfigs' error is fixed with a recent ( ie 1.5.x ) xserver and compiz? The release notes say that only xserver versions up to 1.4 are supported, so I assume not?

    Anyway, here's hoping we'll get that r600 code release Christmas present everyone's been crossing their fingers for.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by heng View Post
    I just wanted to say how wonderfully pleased I am with the Radeon driver shipped with Intrepid. No flicker, reliable suspend, compiz goodness - wonderful! No longer do I wait with baited breath for ATI driver 8.(n+1).

    I feel truly sorry for all those people that have a card unsupported by the open driver.
    I wanted to say that, too.
    With the upgrade from Kubuntu 8.04 to 8.10 I've said goodbye to FGLRX - and I've found the open source Radeon driver is a lot better for people which cards are supported by it. Even if it's framerate in linux games is half of the FGLRX and doesn't have GLSL, it's a lot better for desktop with composite+desktop effects, xvideo, etc. - even in games it doesn't have such awful bugs as FGLRX.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by xeros View Post
    I wanted to say that, too.
    With the upgrade from Kubuntu 8.04 to 8.10 I've said goodbye to FGLRX - and I've found the open source Radeon driver is a lot better for people which cards are supported by it. Even if it's framerate in linux games is half of the FGLRX and doesn't have GLSL, it's a lot better for desktop with composite+desktop effects, xvideo, etc. - even in games it doesn't have such awful bugs as FGLRX.
    Quote Originally Posted by oyvind View Post
    Video is still a flickering mess with mplayer/xv, a little better with vlc/xv, but all-in-all completely unwatchable in a composited environment. Radeon-driver is currently way ahead in this area. ATI X1400/R500, Ubuntu 8.10 x86.
    Maybe AMD will eventually just start supporting the open RadeonHD driver instead and drop fglrx, though of course fglrx is further ahead in other areas still.

    Quote Originally Posted by russell_h View Post
    Any updates on video tearing?
    Apparently, it still sucks, and more video acceleration standards is kind of silly, I wish they'd just stick to one good open standard if possible and be done with it but oh well. Actually interested in Intel's video efforts for a good HTPC solution (since Intel sucks at 3D still). They were also the ones really "going after" tearing, or so they said, but of course it's one thing to talk about it...

    Quote Originally Posted by Inkaine View Post
    Great to hear it supports Hybrid CF now.
    The CPU should always be doing all it can to help out, same with the GPU, the northbridge, and the southbridge. Your whole computer even! So, I'd label this as a gimmick, but whatever, as long as it's an open standard and not just an effort to tie the CPU to the motherboard to the GPU even more. We're already sick enough of different CPU "socket types" (no reason for this, seriously) preventing us from directly comparing CPU performances by swapping them out, we don't need AMD *computers* vs. Intel/Nvidia *computers*. Where did the standards go to allow for competition...oh yeah, they don't like competition.

    Quote Originally Posted by FunkyRider View Post
    I was going to get an HTPC for living room and was keep looking various 780G motherboards for the past 2 months.

    But, after 2 years of disappointment of FGLRX (start with X1900 era) and recent not so great announcements, I went to buy a GeForce 6100 motherboard.

    Result:
    1. Saved $$$ - Gigabyte 6100: $80 vs Abit 780G $120
    2. Saved hassles - nVidia driver works great at everything, fglrx keeps messing up
    3. I am overall happier.

    Although I have been buying Radeons for the past 2 years, I've always been suffering from the Linux driver issues. My main rig with Radeon 4850 can't even watch video with compiz enabled so I have to keep switching it on, off, on, off, .... If this card doesn't have proper support when it passes its service life, I will indeed go to nvidia and never look back. Sure 9800GTX is slower and GTX260/280 more expensive, but I'd rather having a slower system (is it really slower under Linux?!?!) or spend several more hundred bucks to buy happiness!
    Actually, because of AMD/ATI doing well, at least with Windows drivers and performance (and to some degree Linux performance as well), Nvidia has dropped their prices a lot, I think they're actually cheaper $/performance-wise at the moment from what I could attempt tp piece together. Of course, benchmarks even with games are so biased it's tough to compare fairly, which is what they want. If you can buy out a game studio to optimize their game to run on your video cards, "doing well" in the market comes down to bribery, not engineering. Not done for everything obviously, that'd be impossible, but for some games it has been done.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yfrwlf View Post
    Apparently, it still sucks, and more video acceleration standards is kind of silly, I wish they'd just stick to one good open standard if possible and be done with it but oh well. Actually interested in Intel's video efforts for a good HTPC solution (since Intel sucks at 3D still). They were also the ones really "going after" tearing, or so they said, but of course it's one thing to talk about it...
    Actually, I've been looking at the XvBA libraries, and it looks like it's intended to be a reasonably sensible extension to XvMC, loosely based on Microsoft's DXVA. I'm guessing, from glancing over the disassembled code, the idea is that you create an XvMC context with XvMCCreateContext and surfaces with XvMCCreateSurface as usual, then use XvBA. More specifically, XvBAStartDecodePicture, XvBADecodePicture, and XvBAEndDecodePicture appear to be roughly equivalent to IDirectXVideoDecoder::BeginFrame, Execute, and EndFrame under Windows, but with XvMC surfaces. (Not sure where XvBACreateDecodeBuffers and XvBADestroyDecodeBuffers fit in.)

    Of course, I can't really test this - aside from the lack of headers, my Radeon HD 2600 XT only supports UVD 1. (MPlayer won't even try, and when I attempt to call XvMCCreateContext my test app segfaults.) Should hopefully be fairly easy to use once the headers are out, though.

    Also, you've got to remember that when it was created, VAAPI was essentially vaporware (it still is) and VDAPU hadn't been released yet. This probably made the most sense at the time.

    Edit: Hmmm... looks like this changed in 8.12, which seems to seperate XvBA and XvMC. (Oh, and removes XvMC from libXvBAW.so.) I wonder when they'll actually finalise the spec?
    Last edited by makomk; 12-22-2008 at 07:59 AM.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by heng View Post
    I just wanted to say how wonderfully pleased I am with the Radeon driver shipped with Intrepid. No flicker, reliable suspend, compiz goodness - wonderful! No longer do I wait with baited breath for ATI driver 8.(n+1).

    I feel truly sorry for all those people that have a card unsupported by the open driver.
    Kick a guy while he's down, stupid 790GX. Though I suppose I knew what I was getting into, picking up a 'new' board.

    Thankfully, I came up with a fool proof backup plan for this event -- mainboard swap I'll put this board into a less important system until the video tearing is resolved.

  10. #10
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    Same with me and the 790GX. No Christmas miracle for me here.

    I guess I'll just have to give up Linux completely until they are ready with HTPC-level features. Currently I look in on this site and OpenSUSE's radeonhd development list daily but now I wonder if it really is worth it. Maybe once a month...


    Quote Originally Posted by charlie_D View Post
    Kick a guy while he's down, stupid 790GX. Though I suppose I knew what I was getting into, picking up a 'new' board.

    Thankfully, I came up with a fool proof backup plan for this event -- mainboard swap I'll put this board into a less important system until the video tearing is resolved.

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