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Thread: AMD To Drop Radeon HD 2000/3000/4000 Catalyst Support

  1. #71
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    I don't mind AMD dropping HD2000 and 3000 support, but HD4000 support kinda sucks. A lot of IGP and laptops that are far from obsolete still use that chipset.

    A year more would have been better maybe? Phenom II and it's supported chipset does go back to HD4000 more or less.


    As for people complaining about AMD's support ... They have been great. More then great even. They've released specs, they've got people working for them, paying them money, to work on the open source drivers. What else can you want? Yes, more driver developers payed by AMD would be better. More Open source driver developers in the community would be awesome too, but .... lack of manpower or knowledgeable dev's is what's lacking there. Heck, AMD even supports coreboot!

    Compare that to nVidia. What do they for the community? .... Nothing. That's right. They don't 'stop' nouveau, they said, but there's no specs drops, no payed developers. Just some enthousiastic users because back then they had nVidia cards that where 'better' then other cards. Or whatever pushed them back then (Its good we have people like that). nVidia's CEO once said (and I'd love to find that quote again), that he'd never do opensource drivers, he saw it more of an disease if anything (opensourcesness of stuff).

    And intel, yes they have some reasonable support, but even they had some nasty binary blob mess with polousbo (sp).


    So yes, it sucks that HD4000 support is being dropped, but AMD still deserves praise and love for their opensource involvement.

  2. #72
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    I thought that the fglrx driver was some so-called "unified" driver.
    I did understood at first that the same code was able to make run any card, only by the calls made to the BIOS of the card.
    Making them write the same driver for many cards.

    So, what's the point in dropping older cards?
    HD2/3/4k are not that old.

    What will be their gain in the driver of dropping that ?
    I perfectly understand that they do perhaps hope the customers will buy new cards just to get support.
    Not me.
    If i'm forced to drop my card just because lack of support, I will never buy ATI again. Be it either on processors or on GFX cards. I hate being force to change my hardware because of lack of support.

  3. #73
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fixxer_Linux View Post
    I thought that the fglrx driver was some so-called "unified" driver.
    Which basically just means that it's a single package that has a shit load of different drivers in it, sharing what little they can.

    Think of it like Mesa. Tons of code shared across all drivers, but yet there's still separate drivers for r100, r300, r600, and now r800. And one of those is no longer supported iirc (the old r100/radeon driver).

    The more code you have, the more crap you have to maintain. If there is a diminishing commercial appeal to spending money maintaining large swaths of legacy code, then that code is going to get dropped.

    NVIDIA does the exact same thing, btw. They have three or four separate driver series for Linux now. The older ones I believe get small patches to the Open Source kernel bridge code, but otherwise get no new features or support. AMD's proprietary driver also has a small Open Source bridge, so porting it forward may be feasible (not sure about the X.org part though).

    If i'm forced to drop my card just because lack of support, I will never buy ATI again. Be it either on processors or on GFX cards. I hate being force to change my hardware because of lack of support.
    You're kinda fucked, then. NVIDIA does it. Intel does it (they're okay on Linux, but they abandon their GPUs on Windows every new release; I have DX10.1-capable Intel hardware that only ships with an old buggy GL 3.0 driver, for no fucking reason besides Intel being cheap and incompetent). Everybody does it.

  4. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by bulletxt View Post
    Valve is about to release Steam for Linux, so users will need full 3d support. How can AMD make money out of this "historical" situation? SIMPLE: kill the driver for 70% users out there and force them to buy a new GPU because the OSS driver won't be able to run Valve's games!
    If you read through responses in this thread, you'll see that people are pissed at AMD and would be more likely to buy an nvidia card if they cared about demanding 3D games.

  5. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fenrin View Post
    That's very good. So that means that a maintained Ubuntu release will be probably compatible with Catalyst <12.7 until April 2017. And Catalyst <12.7 should be also compatible with maintained releases of RHEL based distros even much longer.

    Then no much reason to worry about this step then.
    Unless you actually care about the other evolutions of the desktop that take place between distro releases.

  6. #76
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    Quote Originally Posted by elanthis View Post
    [...]


    You're kinda fucked, then. NVIDIA does it. Intel does it (they're okay on Linux, but they abandon their GPUs on Windows every new release; I have DX10.1-capable Intel hardware that only ships with an old buggy GL 3.0 driver, for no fucking reason besides Intel being cheap and incompetent). Everybody does it.
    I agree with the last sentence, even AMD/ATI supports their cards still via their open source driver. Also if you are really convinced that the proprietary driver is much better for you even in the next years, you can still use Catalyst 12.6 in Linux distros. Several conservative distros (including Ubuntu, even it is not as conservative as RHEL or Debian) will still support this driver in 5+ years (via Ubuntu release 12.04)
    Last edited by Fenrin; 04-20-2012 at 07:44 PM.

  7. #77
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    Quote Originally Posted by allquixotic View Post
    Unless you actually care about the other evolutions of the desktop that take place between distro releases.
    If I care about the evolutions of the desktop, I would also use newer hardware. Many game addicted people replace their hardware every 2 years or so.

  8. #78
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fenrin View Post
    If I care about the evolutions of the desktop, I would also use newer hardware. Many game addicted people replace their hardware every 2 years or so.
    These two things have absolutely nothing in common:

    1. Wanting to take advantage of the latest features, bugfixes and enhancements to your favorite desktop (e.g. KDE or GNOME)
    2. Being a high-end hardware user or gamer

    You can get real productivity improvements, not just "eye candy", from newer desktops. It's less noticeable with GNOME, but I defy you to use KDE 4.0 or 4.1 for daily use. And I defy you to use something like 4.8 for even a few days and then go back to something like 4.4 and be happy with it.

    DE versions matter to a lot of people. As do versions of popular apps like Firefox, which don't get updated in those "conservative" distros.

    The only thing those conservative distros are good for is for servers, where there is literally no benefit to upgrading more frequently than every 5 years or so, because all you're doing is serving webpages, email, etc.

    The reason for this is that progress on the Linux server side has slowed down dramatically as the server side has become, how shall we say it, feature complete. Basically, even RHEL 5 is an extremely good (as in tons of features and fast) server OS. The only server-side technology that has really made progress in the past 5 years is virtualization, so if you're doing things on physical servers or containers, you probably don't care.

    Think of it this way: early adopters of Linux were, by and large, much more interested in using Linux for servers than using it for desktops. I'm talking 1990s here. Long before 0.001% of the population ran Linux on desktops, some 5% of the server market was already occupied by Linux running Apache web server. 5% of a global market such as web servers is HUGE. Companies such as IBM poured enormous resources into getting open source web stacks on top of Linux running very competitively, and often flat-out beating Microsoft and Solaris. All without the heinous license fees.

    The Linux server ecosystem had a 10 year start on the (serious) Linux desktop, essentially. The real big players have only just started knocking at the gate of the desktop. So the huge upheavals, improvements, changes in the server ecosystem happened somewhere between, oh, 1995 and 2003. Since then, it's been rather unexciting, gradual change.

    It'll be at least another decade until the desktop reaches that state. For now, we're still in "major, frequent upheavals" mode. Just look at how much Gnome changed with 3.x. Look at how much KDE changed between 3.x and 4.x, and then changed even more between 4.0 and 4.8. Look at the progress that open source graphics drivers have made from about 2007 to 2012: in 5 short years, we've gone from basic OpenGL 1.4 on only certain hardware, to OpenGL 2.1 on most hardware and 3.0 on certain hardware. The wait time between chip release and full support is decreasing exponentially with each new ASIC generation. The evolution is fast and furious, because there's demand and there's a lot of work left to do.

    So if you are using software that is rapidly changing, and you sit around for 2 or 3 years using the old version, you're going to get left in the dust. On the other hand, if you are using software that is only changing gradually, and you sit around for 2 or 3 years using the old version, you will barely be missing a thing. This is why RHEL is a very smart choice for servers, but a very stupid one for desktops.
    Last edited by allquixotic; 04-20-2012 at 07:55 PM.

  9. #79
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    I was a bit surprised to read this, but when thinking about it, it does not really affect me at all.

    As some people have said, the only reason why this would be a problem in the near future is if you choose to use one of the more faster updating distros like Fedora or a non-LTS release of Ubuntu with the blob. I do use Fedora and I have a Radeon HD 4670, but the main reason I do is because Fedora is generally really good at keeping support current for the free radeon drivers. That is the main reason I am using it.

    If I wanted the blob I would use CentOS or some other longer term supported distro, as Fedora and the like do not really work well with the blob anyway. In fact, for the people I know that use the blob this would be the best solution anyway.

    Trine 2 already runs pretty well for me with the latest free drivers available on Fedora 16, and game performance only promises to get better. So I am not that unhappy about this.
    Last edited by Hamish Wilson; 04-20-2012 at 08:08 PM.

  10. #80
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    Quote Originally Posted by oliver View Post
    As for people complaining about AMD's support ... They have been great. More then great even. They've released specs, they've got people working for them, paying them money, to work on the open source drivers. What else can you want?
    Something that works.

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