For this article today, the major driver releases of the year for their mainline driver were benchmarked while ignoring some of the later drivers in each series that just shipped bug-fixes or new kernel / xorg-server support after a new driver series was already in beta or stable. The tested NVIDIA drivers for this article include the 331.38, 334.16, 337.12, 337.19, 340.17, 343.13, 343.22, 346.16, and 346.22 Linux x86_64 drivers. The 331 series was the last driver series from late 2013 for reference. The graphics card used for today's testing was a GeForce GTX 780 Ti (Kepler) graphics card as being a high performance GPU that's compatible with all of the driver releases tested throughout the year.
The performance of Civilization: Beyond Earth on Linux is quite demanding. The OpenBenchmarking.org test profile of Civilization Beyond Earth uses roughly the high image quality settings and for this article the tests were done at 1920 x 1080. As the results are about to show, even with modern graphics cards, it's quite a chore putting out a decent frame-rate at 1080p for this strategy game.
Eric Anholt, the lead developer developer behind the Broadcom VC4 Mesa/Gallium3D driver stack for supporting the Raspberry Pi, has announced a new performance achievement.
Eric implemented a user-space buffer object cache for the Gallium3D driver. This buffer object cache is designed after the user-space cache he designed for Intel's driver while being employed by them. This cache reuses buffer objects that haven't been shared to other processes and frees buffer objects that have been in the cache unused for over one second.
Mesa 10.4.0 has been released! Mesa 10.4.0 is a feature release that
includes many updates and enhancements. The full list is available in
the release notes file in docs/relnotes/10.4.html.
The tag in the GIT repository for Mesa 10.4.0 is 'mesa-10.4.0'. I have
verified that the tag is in the correct place in the tree.
This week with the release of Phoronix Test Suite 5.4 we also announced LinuxBenchmarking.com, a collection of 32 systems running various upstream benchmarks on a daily basis in a fully automated manner. The daily upstream benchmarking ranges from the Linux kernel Git to Mesa to Arch/Antergos Linux to LLVM/Clang. Here's a walkthrough of the new lab housing this test farm where hundreds of benchmarks are run daily in looking for performance regressions and other changes with the upstream open-source code.