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Thread: AMD Open-Source S.I. Botched, Hope For The Future

  1. #11
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    hmm I thought, yes it kind of sucks but at least a person who talks like a human about process.

    No press bullshit where all is good and for anything goes wrong others are to blame...

  2. #12
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    These endless SI "stories" from Michael are getting tiresome. The are little more then just restating "SI is unusable" with a a few other negative comments. The drivers are working just fine for display purposes and performance is fine for non-3D tasks. Also, we never gave any explicit time frames for when any specific features would be "finished." Display support was out around launch time for SI so the hw has been "usable" since then. From the beginning we've stated and re-stated that the open source project is designed to support the open source community, not write the entire stack ourselves and that the rate of progress will largely be defined by the amount of community involvement. We've put a lot of effort in to jump start development and get usable code and support out there to help the community. Unfortunately very few developers outside of AMD have done much with SI. At this point it's mostly just AMD developers working on it. Unfortunately our time is shared with other projects that many would consider equally important: improving 2D support (glamor), adding OpenCL support, adding support for new asics, and other projects. I don't see how SI support was "botched." We did exactly what we said we would do. Secondly for things outside of display and 3D (like UVD), we said from the beginning and have repeated on many occasions (included quoted references in the article), that we aren't committing to supporting them at the moment, but we will look into whether we can support them in the future and still meet appropriate contractual obligations. That may mean we can, that may mean we can't.

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by agd5f View Post
    These endless SI "stories" from Michael are getting tiresome. The are little more then just restating "SI is unusable" with a a few other negative comments. The drivers are working just fine for display purposes and performance is fine for non-3D tasks. Also, we never gave any explicit time frames for when any specific features would be "finished." Display support was out around launch time for SI so the hw has been "usable" since then. From the beginning we've stated and re-stated that the open source project is designed to support the open source community, not write the entire stack ourselves and that the rate of progress will largely be defined by the amount of community involvement. We've put a lot of effort in to jump start development and get usable code and support out there to help the community. Unfortunately very few developers outside of AMD have done much with SI. At this point it's mostly just AMD developers working on it. Unfortunately our time is shared with other projects that many would consider equally important: improving 2D support (glamor), adding OpenCL support, adding support for new asics, and other projects. I don't see how SI support was "botched." We did exactly what we said we would do. Secondly for things outside of display and 3D (like UVD), we said from the beginning and have repeated on many occasions (included quoted references in the article), that we aren't committing to supporting them at the moment, but we will look into whether we can support them in the future and still meet appropriate contractual obligations. That may mean we can, that may mean we can't.
    well accounting the massive job you are doing here rewriting and updating the entire linux graphic stack [and as happy r600g user] i give you my kudos and in many areas r600g has proven to be massively superior than fglrx[2d/XV for example even though exa is getting old(itching to test glamor but im with xorg 1.13 so im waiting the patch)] but is true that r600g has some rough edges and mesa need more work but is true also that the situation is improving daily so no complains here

    is understandable too that GCN been an massive change from VLIW will require lots of work and testing hence stretching the release time but that is expected in any other hardware vendor.

    maybe an advice is tag OSS drivers as "alpha state under heavily delevopment" or something similar and get newbies to stick with the blob for now so you can avoid the typical LOL questions like UVD .... but well haters are gona hate but be sure that most of us trully respect and appreciate your work and AMD involvement in the OSS drivers [i do understand the fact AMD is not here to write the driver but to provide documentation and help to the community, dunno why people seem to have such a hard time understanding that tho] and well i praise Intel and nouveau group too [not Nvidia tho (.!. linus style)]

    as side note i tried some time ago to help with the vdpau tracker and i must say gallium code is kinda creepy [at least for a c++ dev ] so maybe some documentation could help to bring more guns[i know is hard tho so is like an idea to keep around no pressure], either way just ignore the haters and keep your awesome job

  4. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by agd5f View Post
    These endless SI "stories" from Michael are getting tiresome. The are little more then just restating "SI is unusable" with a a few other negative comments. The drivers are working just fine for display purposes and performance is fine for non-3D tasks.
    Michael is provoking imho, and be aware of his target: the linux user. From this point of view the radeon driver is not good, at least when you talk about SI. Put in other words, for the normal PC user, one who can't distinguish a fan from a CPU, radeon is not usable I think. The user would have a sluggish experience on SI I think, and you can't give him a reason but "the driver is not ready". I was a radeon user, and it was a bit (not a lot, but still) of a pain I have to say honestly. I respect and understand your work Alex and I can see you are tired by article like this. But I really think Micheal is just warning the average user (and hopefully his laud will gain some attention which is important to get new developers), for his our benefit of course, this site is his work like radeon is part of yours.

    And on my personal POV: this policy of AMD of just supporting the open-source community.... well I don't like it very much, your team is too small. Community driven drivers rarely success, expecially if complicated as GC drivers. The manufacter must drive the development, not just support it, but you need more HR for this indeed. You can't do that in just 4.

    Anyway I wish you best luck with radeon 8000 series.... who knows you might surprise me and I will start buying AMD again.
    Cheers

  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by enrico.tagliavini View Post
    Michael is provoking imho, and be aware of his target: the linux user. From this point of view the radeon driver is not good, at least when you talk about SI. Put in other words, for the normal PC user, one who can't distinguish a fan from a CPU, radeon is not usable I think.
    I would posit just the opposite. In that case, the user probably can't tell whether he's using vesa or a native driver. Both will put an image on the screen a perform quite well for non-3D tasks which is what the vast majority of users do. Even for basic 3D, llvmpipe should do a pretty decent job in the interim. For that, the driver already works quite well.

  6. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by agd5f View Post
    I don't see how SI support was "botched."
    Let me start by saying, "Thank you for your contributions, they are greatly appreciated. Keep up the great work"

    Regarding "botched". This isn't a personal criticism for any member of the team developing RadeonSI OSS drivers, it is a criticism of AMD's priorities, timelines, and release management. Any snarkiness that you are getting from entertainers like Michael, or the community over which he holds custodianship, is due to the jealousy we all feel when we see the Catalyst driver performing. People like to complain and whine. It's human nature. We like to complain about the OSS driver. Catalyst's existence makes it easy for us to do so. OSS developers are in the unfortunate position of being a liaison between consumers and the business side of AMD by virtue of their accessibility.

    I'm not certain that (the business end of) AMD understands the situation, or the potential stakes involved. Looking at their history, one would be hard pressed to remain optimistic.

    Don't get down on the snarky comments. Understand that our issues are real, and that the entity responsible for our issues is the business side of AMD.

    F

  7. #17
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    I couldn't agree more. I have nothing but big respect for the developers. I think in ~5 years from now, when mesa/gallium are really mature and supporting several GPUs, people will realise how the user experience will be a far cry from any closed drivers. And anyone working on this endevour should receive a major thanks.

    For the first time I can say very confidently that Linux is the future. Right now the user experience is far from pleasant, but as more and more companies get on board, the tiping point starts to show up in the horizon.

    Many Linux based OSes are showing up and OSS drivers will be what allows any hardware vendor to seamlessly support each of these OSes with close to no extra effort at all. With Ubuntu WebApps and Office 365, it will probably be a better experience to use MS Office in Ubuntu than in Windows 8.

    This is why I whish that AMD had more vision (pun intended). Windows won't be here forever, and you cannot rely on the community to do your heavy lifting for you. Linux is no longer a toy OS and the future is getting brighter and brighter. Right now AMD only supports a single mobile OS, one that hasn't even been lauched yet: Win8. If Win8 fails in the market place, AMD cannot support android, chrome OS, firefox OS, webOS, tizen, ubuntu, meego. If Valve lauches a Linux based SteamBox, it will have to rely on the buggy Catalyst for any kind of support, nVidia and intel will be light years ahead.

    This is why I urge AMD to stop betting all your horses on a single patform, start hiring/training more great people such as these guys right now. At the cost of developing one great OSS driver, the company will be able to support countless OSes. You cannot get a better deal than this.

  8. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by bridgman View Post
    It's funny... I was expecting an news post more like "Open source SI fixes pushed, glxgears now runs, open source OpenCL work proceeding on schedule". Oh well...
    Yeah, people give you way too much shit. Just curious though, why did you guys go with GLAMOR? I have some ideas why you might have chose it, but I am quite curious as to AMD's reasoning behind it.

  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by LinuxID10T View Post
    Yeah, people give you way too much shit. Just curious though, why did you guys go with GLAMOR? I have some ideas why you might have chose it, but I am quite curious as to AMD's reasoning behind it.
    Please see any of the glamor threads for extended discussion. Short answer: EXA needs work to to properly support additional RENDER features. The gallium Xorg state tracker uses EXA so that would have the same limitations as a native EXA driver. Either way you start out with limitations on what can be supported going forward. Properly supporting "2D" acceleration requires most of what you'd need for 3D (shader compiler, more advanced state handling, support for multiple generations of hw, etc.) and is a huge amount of work (see SNA for example). Glamor takes advantage of the effort already required for OpenGL (the 3D driver), and allows you to implement support for more advanced functionality using OpenGL which is an API a lot of people are already familiar with.

  10. #20
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    Ya, you were stupid enough to buy our hardware but you can't use it so stop whining. Is not an acceptable position for any company to take. As for MESA it will never be any where near up to par as long as the card manufacturers refuse to let people know how the hardware is designed to work. This isn't like looking at an analogue circuit. Unless you know how the chips are designed and work together the amount of work required to reverse engineer how a modern graphics card works is beyond the resources that any one could reasonably be expected to expend. Documentation is the only viable way to have what should be considered a reasonable level of performance in this day and age. But both NVidia and AMD have decided that they are never going to provide what is needed so the open source drivers for these companies will always suck.

    As for the SI cards. I bought mine after Michael had posted that AMD was dropping support for the older cards in FGLRX. I figured that if I bought any thing older than SI I wouldn't even be able to give the card away if it didn't work out. And AMD was plenty quiet about how the open source drivers were going to work on SI. I live on the internet researching things for my profession and I hadn't run across any thing until my card worked like crap. I haven't had any problems with any piece of hardware on Linux in 7 or 8 years. I assumed that had all gone away years ago. At least I was able to dig my $70 O!Play out of the closet and can watch videos on that while I decide what to do next. If I can figure out some way to take the cooling system off of my SI card and make it work on my old HD4000 card I might try that. Other wise I will just throw it in the garbage and move onto buying a whole new computer. Ask me how I feel about my customer experience AMD. The last time I felt this screwed was when NVidia put out their flawed graphics chips and HP forced a patch on me to down grade my graphics performance.

    I finally got the Fedora guys to start building and packaging the radeonsi driver but it looks like that was a complete waist of time, if the rest of the stack isn't going to work. It isn't the wasted money for the card that really ticks me off. It is being without a proper functioning computer for so long while I try to work out how to get all these new pieces working. I just can't afford the down time.

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