Last weekend there was a fair amount of chatter about Intel not planning to bring some OpenGL 3.0 functionality to Ironlake. The hardware supports some of GL3, but the Intel developers are more concerned about newer generations of Intel graphics hardware plus other driver features. How though is the Intel Ironlake (Clarkdale/Arrandale) performance with Mesa 9.1? Here's some benchmarks.
Rob Clark has sent out a revised Freedreno Gallium3D driver that he's hoping to be merged into the mainline Mesa repository. This provides an open-source user-space driver for the Qualcomm Adreno A220 graphics hardware.
While LLVMpipe is now commonly used as the default software fallback on the Linux desktop in cases where there is no OpenGL hardware driver available, it remains limited to OpenGL 2.1 compliance and doesn't see too much love by developers. Fortunately, VMware developers continue to take some care of this driver and today there's now support for two new OpenGL extensions pertaining to texture buffers.
With this morning's release of mesa-demos 8.1, which provides updates to the commonly used glxinfo command, it's now easy to find out the version of the OpenGL Core Profile supported by your graphics driver/hardware.
With the release of Mesa 9.1, Intel Sandy Bridge and Ivy Bridge graphics continue to be advanced while at the same time the Intel Linux developers are hard at work on future Haswell and Valley View graphics support. Having only limited resources to go around, Intel developers have quickly lost interest in earlier generations of hardware.
The Freedreno Gallium3D driver is closer to being merged into Mesa after support for Freedreno was added into libdrm, the DRM library, on Friday.
For those users of the open-source Linux graphics drivers, if you're not a habitual Mesa Git follower, go forth and download Mesa 9.1 now that it's been officially released.
For those living in a conservative, stable land, Mesa 9.0.3 is now available with bug-fixes to the various open-source GPU drivers.
Vadim Girlin on Sunday posted a stack space patch for the AMD R600 Gallium3D driver that he reported to improve Unigine's performance by ~30% for this open-source Radeon graphics driver. He has since revised that patch, but testing has revealed it isn't too incredibly exciting at this point.
The Freedreno graphics driver that supports reverse-engineered Qualcomm ARM graphics is nearing a state of mainline support within Linux.
While Mesa 9.1 represents a number of improvements to this open-source graphics stack that were made over the past six months, as far as end-users are concerned, there's still a number of shortcomings.
With Mesa 9.1 expected to be released before month's end, here's a run-down of some of the exciting features to be found from this next Mesa 3D release.
Vadim Girlin has revived his "shader optimization" branch of Mesa that focuses upon improvements to the AMD R600 Gallium3D graphics driver.
IBM is working on porting the Gallium3D open-source LLVMpipe software driver to the PowerPC architecture.
Ian Romanick of Intel has laid out plans for improving the automatic configuration of game quality and performance settings under Linux in an effort to improve the out-of-the-box experience for drivers and graphics cards on the open-source operating system.
One of the ways that Intel has been trying to make their Mesa driver faster is through proper threading support, but for now the support is unfortunately slower while the code is still being actively developed.
The nicer Radeon Gallium3D (R600g) shader disassembler that was previously talked about on Phoronix has finally been merged into mainline Mesa.
While there's been early code available for several months, Mesa support for OpenGL Geometry Shaders still isn't ready for merging into mainline Mesa.
Mesa 9.1 was branched yesterday, ahead of the official release next month, which effectively puts an end to new feature development on this next release. For those that haven't been keeping up with Mesa's Git activity over the past half-year, here's a look at the new OpenGL extensions supported.
Compiler tuning can lead to performance improvements for many computational benchmarks by toying with the CFLAGS/CXXFLAGS, but is there much gain out of optimizing your Mesa build? Here's some benchmark results.
Mesa 9.1 should be released by the end of February as the latest version of this bi-annual open-source OpenGL implementation that continues to slowly but surely pickup new functionality for most major graphics drivers.
With all of the recent improvements going into Mesa/Gallium3D, along with some work advancements to the AMD GPU LLVM back-end, it's slowly becoming a suitable time for enthusiasts wishing to experiment with OpenCL on the open-source Linux graphics stack through Gallium3D and the "Clover" state tracker.
The open-source Radeon R600 LLVM back-end has finally received support for indirect memory addressing.
Mesa 9.0.2 was officially released today.
A bit of new code was committed this week for Gallium3D's LLVMpipe software driver that attempts to provide modest OpenGL performance as a software fallback by taking advantage of LLVM to exploit multiple CPU cores and the latest instruction set extensions on modern processors. Unfortunately, the rate of advancement for LLVMpipe still isn't too fast.
Last month I wrote about Mesa support for the ARB_texture_multisample. At the time the support was limited to enabling this OpenGL extension for the Intel Mesa DRI driver with Gallium3D and its hardware drivers going unsupported. Fortunately, the OpenGL texture multi-sample support is now heading to Gallium3D and is close to being in a good state for the AMD "R600g" driver.
Open-source developers are looking at putting out the next version of Mesa, version 9.1, in late February.
Two performance-related commits were made today to Mesa for the Nouveau Gallium3D driver.
Patches surfaced on the Mesa mailing list on Saturday morning for supporting the OpenGL ARB_texture_multisample extension within core Mesa and the Intel i965 DRI driver.
Mainline support in the Mesa library for the OpenGL ES 3.0 specification is getting close to becoming a reality.
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