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Intel Mode-Setting Code Rework Explained

Intel

Published on 21 September 2012 12:15 PM EDT
Written by Michael Larabel in Intel
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Back in August new Intel driver mode-setting code was unveiled by Daniel Vetter. Today at XDC2012 he explained this i915 KMS driver rework to the X.Org developers in Germany.

The Intel mode-setting rewrite no longer uses common CRTC helper code found within the Direct Rendering Manager code-base but rather has new code written specifically against how Intel graphics hardware is designed. This work includes new encoder functions, reworking the DPMS code, infrastructure for reading the current hardware state, and various other changes.

For those wishing to learn more about the i915 mode-setting driver rework at a low level, a video of Daniel's talk from this morning is embedded below.

For BSD users that have expressed complaints since the code was unveiled last month, Daniel/Intel basically says "sorry." Redoing the KMS code is a major impairment to the BSD developers that have been working on (slowly) porting the Intel Linux driver code to the FreeBSD kernel, but these Intel driver developers don't have BSD as a support target/interest and aren't going to hold back the Linux code as a result.

This new code should hit the Linux 3.7 kernel.


About The Author
Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the web-site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience and being the largest web-site devoted to Linux hardware reviews, particularly for products relevant to Linux gamers and enthusiasts but also commonly reviewing servers/workstations and embedded Linux devices. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics hardware drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated testing software. He can be followed via and or contacted via .
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