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Thread: Intel Haswell Graphics Driver To Be Opened Up Soon

  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by blinxwang View Post
    Your main competitor had already fully embraced the open-source driver effort and releases hardware code a full YEAR before releasing the actual hardware. You don't see them losing sales or profits; in fact, they're doing pretty well. Why can't AMD just kill off their pathetic excuse for a driver bundle for GNU/Linux (proprietary, at that) and focus all efforts on Mesa/Gallium3D?
    Because people that use ATI products in their professional workstations pay ATI to produce drivers that are compatible with the software that they run.

    For many many years the only reason that Linux has had any attention _at_all_ from Nvidia and ATI is because of the professional workstation market. These people think nothing about dropping $2-3K on graphic hardware. They have no problem having their developers work with Nvidia and ATI and pay a lot of money for NDAs and special access to ensure they get the features that they need. Without this market there would be no proprietary drivers from Nvidia or ATI.

    I remember very plainly from the bad-old-days of ATI were people were forced to hack binaries firegl drivers to make them work on consumer ATI devices. FireGL being the professional workstation line of cards. It sucked, but the hardware is mostly the same so it worked. (Not much has really changed.)

    ATI has to deal with competitive forces and until the 'linux professional workstation' folks are satisfied with the API support in Gallium3D drivers then ATI will need to continue to pour resources into Catalyst.
    Then they are required by law to keep portions of their software secret. Thanks to DMCA and friends. Combine these things together and ATI really has no choice.

  2. #12
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    Aug 2007
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    Since I got a donated radeon 9700 pro card i write scripts for binary drivers - first driver i used for it was 3.2.8 from 10/2003. You never needed to patch the driver to use it with consumer radeon cards. firegl cards get however a slightly different optimized opengl code. I am not sure if it is slower in some areas but it is faster with workstation apps (or with similar benchmarks). There have been always hacks to enable those features on consumer cards, but for games thats definitely not needed. There other things that are much more annoying like the control file/aticonfig whitelist for supported pci-ids when the driver is always generic no matter how "special" it should be.

    For intel oss, my experience is not always positive. Linux distribution based on stable Debian do not receive the support they should get - supporting only the latest mesa/ddx/xserver is not the best solution. There even ati oss is much better.

  3. #13
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    Default I wonder what the status of the 79xx kernel code is

    That's honestly the most frustrating aspect of AMD's open source strategy. The lack of an open development process or any type of public roadmap. There's no way of knowing if the code is on target to be released for the next kernel, or if it's been delayed and completely cancelled and we just aren't being told.

    Once the code is released, even if it doesn't work, we can see commits going into it and others can try and patch problems (even if it rarely happens, it's possible). Until then, everyone is kind of just stuck waiting on AMD without any clue of what's happening.

  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by smitty3268 View Post
    That's honestly the most frustrating aspect of AMD's open source strategy. The lack of an open development process or any type of public roadmap. There's no way of knowing if the code is on target to be released for the next kernel, or if it's been delayed and completely cancelled and we just aren't being told.

    Once the code is released, even if it doesn't work, we can see commits going into it and others can try and patch problems (even if it rarely happens, it's possible). Until then, everyone is kind of just stuck waiting on AMD without any clue of what's happening.
    Sorry, but that's just plain wrong, unless you are only talking about the brief period before initial code release where none of us know the exact schedule (although I provide updates every few weeks). After initial release of code/headers all of the development happens in the open.

    The real thing you're complaining about is that while we were catching up with 6 generations of hardware this "dark period" has been happening after launch so it's visible and annoying. Our competitor didn't have to go through "catch-up" so their corresponding pre-release activities have not been visible to you, but it's a safe bet that we all have to jump through roughly the same hoops.

    With a bit of luck SI should be the last generation where IP review has to happen after launch. If you look at the time delay between HW intro and initial release of code/headers and factor in the magnitude of the change between generations the trend should be pretty clear.
    Last edited by bridgman; 02-07-2012 at 10:38 AM.

  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by bridgman View Post
    Sorry, but that's just plain wrong, unless you are only talking about the brief period before initial code release where none of us know the exact schedule (although I provide updates every few weeks).
    Ok, then, when is the code going to be out?

    After initial release of code/headers all of the development happens in the open.
    Yes, i know that, and that's good.

    The real thing you're complaining about is that while we were catching up with 6 generations of hardware this "dark period" has been happening after launch so it's visible and annoying. Our competitor didn't have to go through "catch-up" so their corresponding pre-release activities have not been visible to you, but it's a safe bet that we all have to jump through roughly the same hoops.

    With a bit of luck SI should be the last generation where IP review has to happen after launch. If you look at the time delay between HW intro and initial release of code/headers and factor in the magnitude of the change between generations the trend should be pretty clear.
    Ok, that's very good news. I did not realize this was supposed to be the last generation it happens on. It's happened on every card since the AMD open source strategy was announced, so I don't think I'm too out of line for thinking it would continue.

    It's not just the dark period AFTER hardware release, though - the fact that in the weeks and months leading up to that release we have no news is just as worrying. Although if we can come to rely on support by the hardware release date then i guess that problem takes care of itself because we would have a roadmap.

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