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Graphics/Benchmarks

The Current RADV+ACO Mesa Driver Performance For February 2020

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Graphics/Benchmarks

As it's been a few weeks since last running a Mesa open-source driver comparison on AMD Radeon graphics hardware, here are some fresh Mesa 20.1-devel benchmarks just a few weeks so far after the Mesa 20.0 branching. These latest Mesa 20.1-devel benchmarks were also run a second time when enabling the RADV ACO shader compiler back-end that's been a focus by Valve developers in enhancing the Linux gaming experience. These results are compared to Mesa 19.2.8 as a baseline for the open-source driver support offered out-of-the-box by Ubuntu 19.10.

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NVIDIA's Ray Tracing Approach in Vulkan

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Graphics/Benchmarks
  • NVIDIA talk up bringing DirectX Ray Tracing to Vulkan

    With Ray Tracing becoming ever more popular, NVIDIA have written up a technical post on bringing DirectX Ray Tracing to Vulkan to encourage more developers to do it.

    The blog post, titled "Bringing HLSL Ray Tracing to Vulkan" mentions that porting content requires both the API calls (so DirectX to Vulkan) and the Shaders (HLSL to SPIR-V). Something that's not so difficult now, with the SPIR-V backend to Microsoft's open source DirectXCompiler (DXC).

    Since last year, NVIDIA added ray tracing support to DXC's SPIR-V back-end too using their SPV_NV_ray_tracing extension and there's already titles shipping with it like Quake II RTX and Wolfenstein: Youngblood. While this is all NVIDIA-only for now, The Khronos Group is having discussions to get a cross-vendor version of the Vulkan ray tracing extension implemented and NVIDIA expect the work already done can be used with it which does sound good.

  • NVIDIA Demonstrates Porting Of DirectX Ray-Tracing To Vulkan

    NVIDIA has written a new technical blog post on bringing HLSL ray-tracing to Vulkan with the same capabilities of DirextX Ray-Tracing. This effort is made feasible by Microsoft's existing open-source DirectXCompiler (DXC) with SPIR-V back-end for consumption by Vulkan drivers. Last year NVIDIA contributed to the open-source DXC support for SPV_NV_ray_tracing. This in turn with the open-source tooling allows converting DXR HLSL shaders into SPIR-V modules for Vulkan.

Vulkan Survey and AMDVLK, AMD Targets GNU/Linux

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Graphics/Benchmarks
  • LunarG's Vulkan developer survey results out now - Vulkan also turns 4

    LunarG, the software company that Valve sponsors who work on building out the ecosystem for the Vulkan API recently conducted a Vulkan developer survey with the results out now.

    Before going over the results, just a reminder that Vulkan just recently turned four years old! The 1.0 specification went public on February 16, 2016. Since then, we've seen some pretty amazing things thanks to it. We've had Linux ports that perform really nicely, the mighty DXVK translation layer advanced dramatically, to the vkBasalt post-processing layer and so on—there's been a lot going on. However, as a graphics API do remember it's pretty young and has a long life ahead of it.

    As for the LunarG survey: there were 349 replies to it, and while not a huge amount it gives us an interesting insight into what some developers think and feel about how Vulkan is doing as a whole. Overall, it gives quite a positive picture on the health of Vulkan with over 60% feeling the overall quality of the Vulkan ecosystem as "Good" and almost 20% rating it as "Excellent".

  • AMDVLK 2020.Q1.2 Released With Vulkan 1.2 Support

    AMDVLK 2020.Q1.2 is out as the first official AMD open-source Vulkan Linux driver code drop in one month.

    AMDVLK has been off its wagon this quarter with their previous weekly/bi-weekly code drops of AMDVLK but that just means the v2020.Q1.2 is quite a big one. First up, AMDVLK 2020.Q1.2 now is supporting Vulkan 1.2 that debuted back in January and with Mesa's RADV Radeon Vulkan driver already having supported it for weeks.

  • Radeon Pro Software for Enterprise 20.Q1.1 for Linux Released

    AMD's Radeon Pro Software for Enterprise 20.Q1.1 Linux driver release was made available this week as their newest quarterly driver installment intended for use with Radeon Pro graphics hardware.

Benchmarking OpenMandriva's AMD Ryzen Optimized Linux Distribution On The Threadripper 3970X

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Graphics/Benchmarks

While Clear Linux is well known as being the performance-optimized Linux distribution out of Intel and catered towards performing the best on their hardware (though as we continue to show, Clear Linux does also perform incredibly well on AMD hardware too and generally faster than other distributions), when it comes to AMD-optimized distributions the primary example remains OpenMandriva. Since 2018 OpenMandriva has been providing an AMD Zen optimized build where their operating system and entire package archive is built with the "znver1" compiler optimizations. As it's been almost a year since last looking at OpenMandriva's Zen optimized build, here are some fresh benchmarks using the newly-released OpenMandriva 4.1.

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Graphics: RADV Vulkan Driver, Intel Codecs and Defects, NVIDIA Firmware

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Graphics/Benchmarks
  • RADV Vulkan Driver Adds Option For Zeroing Out Video Memory

    New to Mesa 20.1-devel is a new option for the Radeon Vulkan "RADV" driver to enable zeroing out video memory allocations.

    This isn't a new concept with other graphics drivers offering similar functionality for zeroing out the vRAM either for security reasons or working around pesky game/app issues. For example, RadeonSI OpenGL zeros out the vRAM for Rocket League to workaround buggy behavior with that game. But zeroing out the video memory normally isn't done by default for all allocations due to performance reasons.

    With the new flag to zero vRAM allocations for the RADV Vulkan driver it was done by Valve's Samuel Pitoiset. In this case he mentions it's in part for "future work."

  • Intel Gen12/Xe Graphics To Support 12-Bit HEVC/VP9 Decode

    We are learning more about the media engine capabilities with the forthcoming Intel "Gen12" (Xe) Tiger Lake graphics.

    The documentation for Intel's open-source media-driver that exposes VA-API capabilities on the Linux desktop was recently updated. That updated Intel VA-API Media Driver points to Intel Gen12 dropping VP8 video capabilities but expanding when it comes to 12-bit codec support.

  • Intel Sends Out Latest Patches For Mitigating Graphics Flaw On Ivybridge/Haswell

    It has been one month and a few days since Intel first made public the need for graphics driver patching of Gen 7/7.5 graphics for older Ivybridge / Haswell hardware to fix a graphics hardware flaw. That vulnerability also affected the common Intel Gen9 graphics but there the mitigation was uneventful and quickly merged without causing any performance hit. But for Ivybridge/Haswell one month later the graphics driver mitigation for CVE-2019-14615 is still being addressed.

    This vulnerability is also known as iGPU Leak by the researchers that discovered it but for the Gen7/Gen7.5 protection the mitigation has been particularly problematic. With the initial Gen7/Gen7.5 patches posted in mid-January there was a huge hit to the graphics performance while Intel worked towards no performance loss.

  • NVIDIA Posts Firmware Needed For Open-Source GeForce 16 Series Acceleration

    As written about last week, in the works for the Linux 5.7 kernel this spring is open-source NVIDIA "Nouveau" acceleration for the GeForce 16 series. That code is currently sitting in the Nouveau development tree until landing in DRM-Next for Linux 5.7, but NVIDIA has now posted the necessary firmware binaries needed for enabling the hardware acceleration on these Turing GPUs.

FreeBSD vs. Linux Scaling Up To 128 Threads With The AMD Ryzen Threadripper 3990X

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Graphics/Benchmarks

Last week I looked at the Windows vs. Linux scaling performance on the Threadripper 3990X at varying core/thread counts followed by looking at the Windows 10 performance against eight Linux distributions for this $3990 USD processor running within the System76 Thelio Major workstation. Now the tables have turned for our first look at this 64-core / 128-thread processor running on the BSDs, FreeBSD 12.1 in particular. With this article is looking at the FreeBSD 12.1 performance and seeing how the performance scales compared to Ubuntu 20.04 Linux and the Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 based CentOS Stream.

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Mesa 20.0 Released

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Graphics/Benchmarks
Linux
  • mesa 20.0.0
    Hi list,
    
    I'd like to announce mesa 20.0.0 as available for download immediately. I'm very
    pleased that we could get all of the issues blocking the release nailed down
    quickly and make a release on time for once!
    
    This is a .0 release, and you may want to continue to to track 19.3.x until
    20.0.1 comes out in two weeks. 19.3.5 is planned to be the final 19.3 release
    and is planned for next Wednesday.
    
    Dylan
    
    Shortlog
    ========
    
    Alyssa Rosenzweig (3):
          pan/midgard: Fix missing prefixes
          pan/midgard: Don't crash with constants on unknown ops
          pan/midgard: Use fprintf instead of printf for constants
    
    Danylo Piliaiev (1):
          st/nir: Unify inputs_read/outputs_written before serializing NIR
    
    Dylan Baker (6):
          .pick_status.json: Update to 2a98cf3b2ecea43cea148df7f77d2abadfd1c9db
          .pick_status.json: Update to 946eacbafb47c8b94d47e7c9d2a8b02fff5a22fa
          .pick_status.json: Update to bee5c9b0dc13dbae0ccf124124eaccebf7f2a435
          Docs: Add 20.0.0 release notes
          docs: Empty new_features.txt
          VERSION: bump for 20.0.0 release
    
    Erik Faye-Lund (1):
          Revert "nir: Add a couple trivial abs optimizations"
    
    Francisco Jerez (6):
          intel/fs/cse: Make HALT instruction act as CSE barrier.
          intel/fs/gen7: Fix fs_inst::flags_written() for SHADER_OPCODE_FIND_LIVE_CHANNEL.
          intel/fs: Add virtual instruction to load mask of live channels into flag register.
          intel/fs/gen12: Workaround unwanted SEND execution due to broken NoMask control flow.
          intel/fs/gen12: Fixup/simplify SWSB annotations of SIMD32 scratch writes.
          intel/fs/gen12: Workaround data coherency issues due to broken NoMask control flow.
    
    Krzysztof Raszkowski (1):
          gallium/swr: simplify environmental variabled expansion code
    
    Marek Olšák (1):
          radeonsi: don't wait for shader compilation to finish when destroying a context
    
    Mathias Fröhlich (1):
          egl: Implement getImage/putImage on pbuffer swrast.
    
    Peng Huang (1):
          radeonsi: make si_fence_server_signal flush pipe without work
    
    Pierre-Eric Pelloux-Prayer (1):
          radeonsi/ngg: add VGT_FLUSH when enabling fast launch
    
    Tapani Pälli (2):
          glsl: fix a memory leak with resource_set
          iris: fix aux buf map failure in 32bits app on Android
    
    Thong Thai (1):
          Revert "st/va: Convert interlaced NV12 to progressive"
    
    Timothy Arceri (1):
          glsl: fix gl_nir_set_uniform_initializers() for image arrays
    
    luc (1):
          zink: confused compilation macro usage for zink in target helpers.
    
    
    
    git tag: mesa-20.0.0
    
  • Mesa 20.0 Released With Big Improvements For Intel, AMD Radeon Vulkan/OpenGL

    The Mesa 20.0 release switches to the new Intel OpenGL driver default, Vulkan 1.2 support for both AMD Radeon and Intel drivers, the RadeonSI OpenGL driver now has GL 4.6 compliance as part of switching to NIR, the Valve-backed ACO code-path for RADV is in much better shape, and many other improvements. See our Mesa 20.0 feature overview to learn about this big update.

  • Mesa 20.0 Is Imminent With New Intel OpenGL Default, Intel + RADV Vulkan 1.2, OpenGL 4.6 For RadeonSI

    With the release of Mesa 20.0 being imminent, here is a look at all of the new features for this first quarter update to the Mesa 3D stack for open-source OpenGL/Vulkan drivers.
    Highlights of the soon-to-be-out Mesa 20.0 are outlined below. Mesa 20.0 will be out as soon as today / this week unless delays happen over lingering bugs.
    - This is the first Mesa release where for those with Broadwell (Gen8) Intel graphics or newer the Intel Gallium3D driver is the new default for OpenGL support. This Intel Gallium3D driver is faster and in better shape than the i965 classic driver. That older OpenGL driver will stick around for supporting Haswell graphics and prior generations.

  • RADV Driver Adds VK_EXT_line_rasterization In Preparing For Eventual Vulkan CAD Apps

    Added to the Vulkan API last summer was VK_EXT_line_rasterization for line rasterization like employed by CAD applications. The open-source Mesa Radeon Vulkan "RADV" driver is now supporting this extension.

Graphics: Nouveau, Wayland, Mesa and RADV

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Graphics/Benchmarks
  • Nouveau Gallium3D Finally Seeing Mesa Shader Disk Cache For Faster Game Load Times

    While the open-source Intel and Radeon OpenGL drivers within Mesa have long employed an on-disk shader cache to help with game load times by being able to load previously compiled shaders from disk, the Nouveau "NVC0" Gallium3D driver is on the heels of finally seeing similar support.

    Nouveau saw a TGSI shader cache a few years ago while now it's finally seeing support for caching the compiled shaders.

  • LavaLauncher 1.6 Released As A Simple Dock/Launcher For Wayland

    If you have been looking for a simple dock/launcher that natively supports Wayland, LavaLauncher 1.6 is available as one such solution.

    LavaLauncher is a simple Wayland-only launcher that allows placing the dynamically sized bar against any screen edge. Unlike most launchers, LavaLauncher doesn't rely upon .desktop files but allows specifying a path to an arbitrary image and the associated shell command to run, allowing for it to be quite extensible than just showing .desktop files for launch applications.

  • Lima Gallium3D Driver Picks Up Multi-Submit Optimization In Mesa 20.1

    Lima in Mesa 20.1-devel now can handle multi-submit support for greater efficiency in handling of multiple OpenGL frame-buffer objects (FBOs). This should allow for greater efficiency/performance in the likes of the X.Org Server or Wayland compositors and avoiding flush-reload costs when switching between FBOs. No hard numbers, however, were provided for the multi-submit benefits to expect.

  • RADV Vulkan Driver Makes A Few More Improvements For GCN 1.0/1.1 Hardware

    Valve open-source driver developer Samuel Pitoiset has contributed some improvements to Mesa 20.1's Radeon Vulkan "RADV" driver benefiting GCN 1.0/1.1 graphics cards.

    These original GCN graphics cards are compatible with the RADV driver but require first switching the kernel driver from the default Radeon DRM driver over to the AMDGPU driver, normally via the radeon.si_support=0 radeon.cik_support=0 amdgpu.si_support=1 amdgpu.cik_support=1 kernel flags. After doing so, RADV has tended to work well with these aging GCN graphics cards -- especially more recently with the RADV ACO back-end now working back to GCN 1.0 for offering better performance.

Windows 10 vs. Eight Linux Distributions On The Threadripper 3970X

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GNU
Graphics/Benchmarks
Linux
Microsoft

When taking the geometric mean of all these benchmark results, the Windows 10 Professional performance was the same as Windows 10 Enterprise for this Threadripper 3970X testing, unlike the Enterprise advantage we've seen on the larger Threadripper 3990X. The slowest of the eight Linux distributions tested was the Ubuntu 20.04 development snapshot, but that still came out to be 9.5% faster than Windows 10. The fastest Linux distribution was Clear Linux on the Threadripper 3970X with a 19% over Windows in these cross-platform benchmarks. Following Clear Linux with a strong showing was the new rolling-release CentOS Stream.

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NVIDIA 440.58.01 Linux Driver

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Graphics/Benchmarks
Linux
Hardware
  • NVIDIA 440.58.01 Linux Driver Fixes Vulkan Game Crashes, New Extensions

    Not scheduled to go live until Monday but up this weekend is the NVIDIA 440.58.01 Linux beta driver that offers a few Vulkan updates.

    The NVIDIA 440.58.01 Linux driver fixes a regression that caused some Vulkan games to crash due to swapchain issues. Affected games include at least F1 2017, Rise of the Tomb Raider, and DiRT 4. This beta driver also fixes a visual glitching issue when falling out of page-flipping such as alt-tabbing on Linux.

  • NVIDIA have a new Vulkan Beta driver out for Linux fixing some regressions

    NVIDIA continue being quick to advance their Vulkan drivers as today they released an update to their special Beta branch.

    440.58.01 is out which adds in support for two more Vulkan extensions with VK_KHR_shader_non_semantic_info and VK_EXT_tooling_info which sounds quite useful to help developers track down what might be causing an error.

    For games this release fixes up a Vulkan swapchain recreation crash with F1 2017, Rise of the Tomb Raider and DiRT 4. NVIDIA also solved an issue with visual glitching of Vulkan applications when "falling out of flipping" with an example being when you alt+tab, however they're still investigating an issue to do with this on the GNOME desktop.

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