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Thread: AMD Releases Radeon HD 6000 Series Open-Source Support

  1. #1
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    Default AMD Releases Radeon HD 6000 Series Open-Source Support

    Phoronix: AMD Releases Radeon HD 6000 Series Open-Source Support

    On the same day that we learn VIA's Linux support is basically dead and after a troubling week for Intel with regards to open-source graphics support for their new Sandy Bridge CPUs, Advanced Micro Devices has come forward and released open-source graphics driver support for their AMD Radeon HD 6000 series of graphics cards...

    http://www.phoronix.com/vr.php?view=ODk4OQ

  2. #2
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    The whole linux graphics driver stack is flawed.

    We don't need to wait for some years for a new version of Windows to run a new graphics card, instead we install the vendor provided driver.

    Without the ability to dynamically expand drivers, Xorg will forever be the second class citizen in graphics world.

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    Damn, just a few weeks after I bought a 6970. Go figure.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FunkyRider View Post
    The whole linux graphics driver stack is flawed.

    We don't need to wait for some years for a new version of Windows to run a new graphics card, instead we install the vendor provided driver.

    Without the ability to dynamically expand drivers, Xorg will forever be the second class citizen in graphics world.
    The issue is market size and demand more than the graphics stack. There is not currently enough market demand for same day open source support. The closed source drivers are started a year or more ahead of time before silicon is even ready. The kernel/mesa/X release cycle is also not really an issue because distros and hw vendors try to make sure the necessary bits get into the upcoming distro releases regardless of whether or not they line up exactly. It's complicated a bit by the fact that there are a plethora of distros that release 2-3 times a year compared to one windows that releases every several years.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BlueJayofEvil View Post
    Damn, just a few weeks after I bought a 6970. Go figure.
    Don't worry, Cayman support is coming. Barts was released first so it got supported first. We're trying to be conservative with estimates because they have a nasty habit of coming back to us re-interpreted as "promises"

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by bridgman View Post
    Don't worry, Cayman support is coming. Barts was released first so it got supported first. We're trying to be conservative with estimates because they have a nasty habit of coming back to us re-interpreted as "promises"
    I know. I previously had a 6870 but somewhat impulsively bought a 6970 shortly after launch due to it being mid-December at the time (and the appeal of the card was too great for my gaming desires )

    I'm currently running Win 7 most of the time and have done some tinkering with my card (turns out flashing an ASUS BIOS can enable voltage tweaking abilities and a higher overclock limit.)

    (slightly off-topic) - is manual fan control support in the works (or already completed) in the open-source stack? Just curious.

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    Manual fan control is not in the works but it's one of those things that probably could be added to the list. It's just one of those things that needs a disproportionate amount of legal analysis relative to the end user benefit, so it's fairly far down the ol' priority stack.

    We might be able to piggyback on the legal/biz work already done for the ADL API, not sure. I would rather spend time improving power management and let the fan controller take the fan speed down automatically

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    Aieeee !! It took more than a minute for the page to come up and by then the edit button was gone.

    Pretend you don't see the duplicated "one of those things" wording in the previous post.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by FunkyRider View Post
    The whole linux graphics driver stack is flawed.
    I agree. As good a state as the ati open source drivers are in...having to wait 12 months from the time the hardware was released until out of the box support lands in a Fedora/Ubuntu is just far too long.

    I struggle to understand why so many other packages need to be updated (kernel, mesa, etc) for a new ati driver to be released. Why are they so tightly coupled? Is this the fault of the ati driver implementation? Why not write the driver for current kernel releases and then update it as the new kernels and mesa are released?

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    Mesa *is* the 3D driver, so the 3D HW acceleration code goes into Mesa.

    The kernel driver handles modesetting, command submission and memory management, while the X driver (ddx) handles 2D and video acceleration along with legacy modesetting code from the UMS days. The driver stack just happens to have four major components -- X driver, 3D driver, kernel driver and userspace kernel driver interface (libdrm). This is not a radeon-specific thing -- all drivers use the same architecture.

    Now, if you were to ask "why don't all the components work on the same release schedule ?", that would be a good question. The community is moving towards a synchronized quarterly release cycle but getting there takes time. The next step would be to synchronize distro release cycles and the underlying driver release cycles (there has been some discussion of this in the past) but now you are trying to synchronize an even larger number of independent groups.

    <RANT>
    A two minute edit window would actually give me time to edit the post without having the submit fail after editing
    </RANT>

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