Don't like that? The OSS drivers work everywhere. Don't think the OSS drivers can meet your needs? Start coding or pay someone to fix them.
Can't do either? Wait. The OSS drivers are improving rapidly.
It seems you like the fglrx support model, i don't. Telling somebody that only a very small part of the Linux universe is supported and the rest has to invent own workarounds to let users use the hardware they have bought is more than a bad joke. The problems are definitely not distro specific, they are globally.
1. fglrx was and still is a *workstation* driver and workstation requirements are distinct from consumer requirements. Among the differences: workstations use older but more stable software; they use commercial distros; they require solid 2d and 3d support. Desktop effects, video decoding and support for rc3 of kernel n+1 are irrelevant in this market.
2. AMD is ramping up support for the consumer market with the OSS drivers and with fglrx. Both drivers have improved *tremendously* during the last 20 months.
Maybe i am the only one who did not notice that improvement when i compare it to NV.
Well. I have also seen both and more GPUs perform in my boxes. And yes, nvidia isn't that bad but then my cards are long legacy and support for newer xorg, kernels is not actually good in legacy. And then there is nv and noveau but especially latter is in a very incomplete state. Can't blame noveau team, of course.
Then there is VIA. Do we all agree that their stuff is fubar?
And the ATI ones, well, when it comes to fglrx it was working for me, until 2.6.29 and .30. On Gentoo. I do believe that they give official support only for certain distributions but the driver of course works distribution independent - as long as you meed the SW requirements. But also the free drivers gave me lots of display fuckup esp. on 2.6.30 series. So it is probably a matter of the Kernel side changes that makes both drivers (or all three if you like, ati, radeonhd, fglrx) mess around. But still I see AMD-ATI working WITH the community and even though I too dislike not having a working fglrx at the moment on my recent cards with my recent kernel or not have the free driver do any 3d - all this is to come. I will be patient once more and look at the progress that IS happening. For nvidia - they may be more power hungry and I see them as a thing that will possibly not last long once it goes legacy. And yes, espacially on notebooks it's often far more complicated to exchange the GPU if neccessary.
So since VIA, XGI (lol, anybody ever heard of them again?) are no option and intel won't sell cards nor do they offer the performance for recent games there is only ATI and nvidia left (is matrox still alive?). And then I rather go with something that has specs and will have a feature complete free driver soon than with something where I am fully depenent on nvidia's good mood.
I was about to write something back about your nv vs radeon statement. But you know what :P It's alright if you love nvidia We could do this all day long. I don't think I can convince you about AMD/ATI's oss supiority.
Last edited by tball; 07-22-2009 at 01:01 PM.
Well I found several issues with my X700 SE/Pro cards as long as they lived, like wrong number of pipes used in mesa or not working ddc on vga only port. Flickering problems on each xrandr execution have been there too. Now those things are fixed and my cards are dead I hope my R600 card survives as long as it takes to get it fully supported. Xv looks promiseing - i don't use fglrx long, only for testing if the driver runs and if vdrift works, gl2benchmark renders, kernel support and new pci ids.
I find this discussion really interesting. It's too advanced for me, though, but I try to digest the main points and crucial info that helps me decide on either ATI or Nvidia when I upgrade my card.
You can read my posts asking about 'which card?' etc. and I am sure many readers here are bored by such posts but I have experienced the 'latest' Nvidia driver install ordeal and although I've survived it, it sounds like a 'patch for the latest ATI driver' is a another animal entirely. Doesn't sound fun. Then again, although I've been Linux for a while now, I still feel as clueless as a newbie quite often.
I think Kano's critique is totally valid (not that my opinion matters for anything...) and here's why. I have read here and there regarding Nvidia and ATI on the Ubuntu forum and many users have ranted on and on about ATI cards and their drivers. This is in the latest release, Jaunty. Ubuntu is 'one of the four distros' ATI expresses that they support, right? It's a later kernel and I wonder if the situation is much better on a 'latest and experimental' type distro like Fedora.
I really would like to support ATI and buy an ATI card like the Radeon HD 4850 or HD 4870 but I don't want to be the guinea pig or the experimenter. I don't feel confident that I'm that able or proficient to do such advanced workarounds. I have been able to install the latest Nvidia driver on my desktop in various distros (Debian, Ubuntu, Fedora) but I've struggled at times, too. But, with the experience, I am comfortable with the task and having to go to another complex and frustrating process is something I'd probably rather avoid. If you have problems from just using Compiz, that sounds bad. Maybe ATI needs to re-focus and take another look at their priorities? I understand the money is with Windows but I've even read of Windows users saying the ATI support is poor. Not sure about that but I know I've read it someplace.
Anyway, sorry to interrupt such an interesting thread and I'm sure both sides can illustrate good points and defending their perspective.
Yes, but it's of course sad when some onboard component won't work. And today's boards often don't have a lot of PCI slots. Still most things should work unless a mainboard vendor chooses to implement some extra-flavour chips of their own. Iirc Asus put some strange derviate of RTL ALC sound chips on their boards that were seen nowhere else. Took some time to get them supported by ALSA.I'm not too worried about other drivers; if something critical doesn't work I've got a shelf full of spare PCI cards...