Mir 1.0 Appears Close, But No Wayland Client Support Yet Nor Vulkan
Written by Michael Larabel in Ubuntu on 12 August 2017 at 09:45 AM EDT. 2 Comments
UBUNTU --
Mir 1.0 might be close to being released for Ubuntu 17.10, but it doesn't yet have Wayland support.

Mir 1.0 has long been said it would happen for the Ubuntu 17.10 release. The 17.10 Artful Aardvark feature freeze is coming up in two weeks and so far this v1.0 release of the Mir display server has yet to materialize. Even after Canonical deciding to drop their grand Mir+Unity8 ambitions, Mir 1.0 was still committed for the 17.10 cycle.

But when abandoning their Unity 8 desktop plans, the Mir 1.0 focus shifted from dropping deprecated libmirclient functions to instead working towards supporting Wayland clients directly. As of this weekend the direct Wayland client support hasn't landed, but it's looking like Mir 1.0 may happen without it.

The Mir 1.0 milestone page indicates all bugs targeting it have been fixed except for one, where it's in-progress to be fixed.

Also indicating a Mir 1.0 release may be around the corner is this Bazaar commit from yesterday drafting the initial 1.0 change-log. The mirserver ABI has been changed for v1.0 while the other application binary interfaces are unchanged from Mir 0.27, since they decided not to drop the deprecated libmirclient functionality or make other invasive code changes now that many Mir developers were let go from Canonical, etc.

The listed features of the tentative Mir 1.0 are relicensing the code to (L)GPLv3 or (L)GPLv2, orientation changing support for a Mir demo client, and other internal code changes. There are also a number of bug fixes.

Besides not seeing Wayland client support yet, Mir 1.0 also hasn't seen any Vulkan support, another feature previously talked about for the v1.0 time-frame. It will be interesting to see if Vulkan support ever materializes now given Mir's future limited scope.

The other previous v1.0 talk was on getting Mir support upstream in the X.Org Server (for XMir) and the necessary graphics driver bits in Mesa, which we haven't seen any work on upstreaming Ubuntu's carried patches, but again isn't too relevant now that Unity 8 isn't going to rule the Ubuntu desktop or other distributions. Mir seems to just being maintained now for select Ubuntu IoT use-cases (and possibly other scenarios) while we'll see if UBports or other community groups forking Unity 8 end up doing anything with Mir, but those forks so far seem to be losing steam.

Nevertheless in being interested in Linux/open-source graphics tech, I'll be on the look out for Mir 1.0.
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Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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