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Graphics/Benchmarks

Graphics: Intel's OpenGL Mesa Driver, DRM and More

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Graphics/Benchmarks
  • Intel's OpenGL Mesa Driver To Better Handle Recovery In Case Of GPU Hangs

    It's sure been a busy week in the Intel open-source graphics driver space... The latest improvement is a patch series providing better context restoration in the case of GPU hangs.

    Chris Wilson who usually deals with the Intel DRM kernel driver, including on the reset/restore front recently, sent out a set of two patches for improving the Intel i965 Mesa driver's behavior following GPU hangs.

  • Intel's Linux DRM Driver To Enable PSR2 Power-Savings By Default

    The Intel DRM/KMS kernel driver will soon see PSR2 panel self refresh capabilities enabled by default for allowing more power-savings on Intel-powered ultrabooks/notebooks.

    For a while now Intel's Direct Rendering Manager driver has enabled Panel Self Refresh (PSR) by default as well as other power-savings features like frame-buffer compression (FBC). But the newer Panel Self Refresh standard, PSR2, for eDP displays has not been enabled by default.

  • Intel Linux Graphics Driver Adding Device Local Memory - Possible Start of dGPU Bring-Up

    A big patch series was sent out today amounting to 42 patches and over four thousand lines of code for introducing the concept of memory regions to the Intel Linux graphics driver. The memory regions support is preparing for device local memory with future Intel graphics products.

    The concept of memory regions is being added to the Intel "i915" Linux kernel DRM driver for "preparation for upcoming devices with device local memory." The concept is about having different "regions" of memory for system memory as for any device local memory (LMEM). Today's published code also introduces a simple allocator and allowing the existing GEM memory management code to be able to allocate memory to these different memory regions. Up to now with Intel integrated graphics, they haven't had to worry about this functionality not even with their eDRAM/L4 cache of select graphics processors.

RadeonSI Primitive Culling Yields Mixed Benchmark Results

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Graphics/Benchmarks

Yesterday's patches introducing RadeonSI primitive culling via async compute yielded promising initial results, at least for the ParaView workstation application. I've been running some tests of this new functionality since yesterday and have some initial results to share on Polaris and Vega.

I've been running tests using a Radeon RX 590 and RX Vega 64 graphics cards. Tests were run with the latest Mesa Git branch of Marek's that provides this primitive culling implementation. That Mesa version was built against LLVM 9.0 SVN, which is a requirement otherwise the very latest LLVM 8.0 release state otherwise this functionality will not work. Additionally, it depends upon the AMDGPU DRM-Next material in the kernel as well so I was running a fresh kernel build off Alex Deucher's latest code branch.

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Benchmarking The Python Optimizations Of Clear Linux Against Ubuntu, Intel Python

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Graphics/Benchmarks

Stemming from Clear Linux detailing how they optimize Python's performance using various techniques, there's been reader interest in seeing just how their Python build stacks up. Here's a look at the Clear Linux Python performance compared to a few other configurations as well as Ubuntu Linux.

For this quick Python benchmarking roundabout, the following configurations were tested while using an Intel Core i9 7980XE system throughout:

- Clear Linux's default Python build with the performance optimizations they recently outlined to how they ship their Python binary.

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Graphics: Adaptive-Sync Work and Mesa 19.0-RC4 Released

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Graphics/Benchmarks
  • No Surprise But Intel Linux Developers Are Working Towards Adaptive-Sync Support

    Back during the Intel Architecture Day event in December, Intel confirmed that finally with Icelake "Gen 11" graphics there is Adaptive-Sync support after talking about it for several years. While they didn't explicitly mention Linux support, they've been largely spot on for years with supporting new display features on Linux and this should be the case as well with Adaptive-Sync and their next-generation graphics.

  • Mesa 19.0-RC4 Released With More Fixes

    After yesterday's botched Mesa 19.0-RC3 release, Mesa 19.0-RC4 is now available while it's looking like two weeks or so until the stable debut.

    Due to the prior release candidates missing out on many fixes due to a scripting failure, Mesa 19.0-RC4 is out today with the corrected script that's pulled in a great deal of fixes onto the 19.0 branch. Over the earlier release candidates, Mesa 19.0-RC4 adds in a surprisingly large number of Nouveau NV50/NVC0 fixes, several RADV Radeon Vulkan driver fixes, and a random assortment of other fixes as seen in the 19.0 branch.

Linux-Firmware Adds Signed NVIDIA Firmware Binaries and Open-Source NVIDIA "Nouveau" DRM Changes Begin Queuing Ahead Of Linux 5.1

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Graphics/Benchmarks
Linux
  • Linux-Firmware Adds Signed NVIDIA Firmware Binaries For Turing's Type-C Controller

    While we are still waiting on NVIDIA to publish the signed firmware images for Turing GPUs in order to bring-up 3D hardware acceleration on the GeForce RTX 2000 series graphics cards with the open-source Nouveau driver, today they did post the signed firmware image files for their Type-C controller found on these new GPUs.

  • Open-Source NVIDIA "Nouveau" DRM Changes Begin Queuing Ahead Of Linux 5.1

    The Nouveau kernel driver tree where development happens on this open-source NVIDIA DRM driver saw a fresh batch of changes on Tuesday in aiming for new material with Linux 5.1.

    This latest work comes from Red Hat's Ben Skeggs who continues serving as the Nouveau DRM driver maintainer and often responsible for many of the Nouveau DRM changes himself. There is just more than two dozen changes that landed into the Nouveau kernel repository.

Graphics: VK9, NVIDIA, AMD and Mesa

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Graphics/Benchmarks
  • VK9 Project Stalls As Developer Leaves To Pursue Other Interests

    While VK9 was the first open-source project to pursue mapping Direct3D over Vulkan, at least for now the project has halted.

    It's been almost three years that Christopher Schaefer has been near single-handedly working on this project to get Direct3D 9 running over the Vulkan graphics API. While he's been successful in getting code samples and other bits running from D3D9 over Vulkan, he's decided to throw in the towel at least for the time being.

  • NVIDIA Video Codec SDK 9.0 Officially Released

    Since the start of December the NVIDIA Video Codec SDK 9.0 update has been available in the company's early access program while now this SDK with the NVENC/NVDEC APIs has rolled out as stable.

    The NVIDIA Video Codec SDK 9.0 brings some big changes particularly around the Turing GPU support with faster decode, support for higher image quality encoding on H.264/H.265, efficiency enhancements, better CUDA interoperability, and other new capabilities enabled for NVIDIA's latest graphics processors.

  • AMD_DEBUG Can Now Be Used In Place Of R600_DEBUG For RadeonSI Options

    When setting various debug options for the RadeonSI Gallium3D driver -- like enabling its NIR back-end among many other options -- that has traditionally been done through the R600_DEBUG= environment variable. But that variable name makes little sense these days since RadeonSI doesn't even support the now-vintage R600 GPUs. Thankfully, AMD_DEBUG= is now a supported alternative.

    Marek Olšák added the support on Tuesday so the AMD_DEBUG environment variable for RadeonSI can now be used as an alternative to R600_DEBUG -- using that environment variable is still supported to keep any scripts, etc, working.

  • mesa 19.0.0-rc3

    Hi List,

    Mesa 19.0-rc3 is now available.

    Due to a bug I discovered in the script that scrapes for stable nominations
    (after uploading the tarball) there is basically nothing in the -rc3 release. As
    a result I'm planning to make a -rc4 tomorrow. You can see the staging/19.0
    branch to see the additional patches present.

    Dylan

  • Mesa 19.0-RC3 Released But It's A Dud

    The latest weekly release candidate of Mesa 19.0 is now available for testing, but it's a very petite release due to failing to include all of the latest back-ported patches intended for this release.

  • RadeonSI Picks Up Primitive Culling With Async Compute For Performance Wins

    Prolific open-source AMD Linux driver developer Marek Olšák has sent out his latest big patch series in the name of performance. His new set of 26 patches provide primitive culling with asynchronous compute and at least for workstation workloads yields a big performance uplift.

    The 26 patches allow for using async compute to do primitive culling before the vertex shader process. This work ends up yielding performance improvements for workloads that do a lot of geometry that ends up being invisible. This code is stable and passing nearly all conformance tests while working from GCN 1.1 through Radeon VII.

GCC 8/9 vs. LLVM Clang 7/8 Compiler Performance On AArch64

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Graphics/Benchmarks

With Clang 8.0 due out by month's end and GCC 9 due for release not long after that point, this week we've been running a number of GCC and Clang compiler benchmarks on Phoronix. At the start of the month was the large Linux x86_64 GCC vs. Clang compiler benchmarks on twelve different Intel/AMD systems while last week was also a look at the POWER9 compiler performance on the Raptor Talos II. In this article we are checking out these open-source compilers' performance on 64-bit ARM (AArch64) using an Ampere eMAG 32-core server.

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Graphics: Pixman, Vulkan, Sway and NVIDIA

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Graphics/Benchmarks
  • Pixman 0.38 Released With Meson Build System Support

    Pixman 0.38 is out this morning to kick off a new week of open-source software releases. Pixman is the pixel manipulation library used by the X.Org Server, Cairo, and other Linux software projects.

    The Pixman 0.38 release isn't the most exciting update and in fact only a handful of changes over Pixman 0.36 from last November, which itself was the first update to this library in three years. Pixman doesn't see too much activity these days thanks in part to more software using Vulkan and OpenGL to benefit from GPU hardware acceleration. The two primary changes of Pixman 0.38.0 is introducing Meson build system support and implementing floating point gradient computation.

  • Vulkan 1.1.100 Released Ahead Of Vulkan's Third Birthday

    Vulkan 1.1.100 was published this morning as the latest version of this high-performance, multi-platform graphics and compute API.

    While the patch version rolled over to 100, that's about as exciting as this update gets to Vulkan API with no major changes to mark this milestone. There aren't any great new extensions or major changes to this version number, but just some documentation/specification clarifications and corrections.

  • Sway 1.0 Close To Release For This Very Promising Wayland Compositor

    Out today is the second release candidate of the feature-packed Sway 1.0 Wayland compositor that continues to be inspired by the i3 window manager.

    Since last week's Sway 1.0 RC1, the compositor entered its feature freeze until the stable release happens. As such, in today's Sway 1.0 RC2 update is just a variety of bug/regression fixes.

    The Sway 1.0 development over the past number of months has brought a lot of improvements and new features from multi-GPU support, support for new Wayland protocols, video capture support, integration around the WLROOTS library, tablet support, and many other additions.

  • NVIDIA's VDPAU Picks Up HEVC 4:4:4 Support

    While NVIDIA is no longer active promoting their Video Decode and Presentation API for Unix "VDPAU" in favor of the cross-platform, CUDA-focused Video Codec SDK with NVENC/NVDEC, the VDPAU library still sees some rare activity from time to time.

    As the first commits since November, last week libvdpau added support for the HEVC 4:4:4 profile to the VDPAU API. This support for H.265 4:4:4 video decoding was added to the libvdpau API and presumably will be exposed by the NVIDIA proprietary driver shortly if it's not already in place with its own VDPAU library build.

Dell XPS 13 9380 + Intel Core i7 8565U Ubuntu Linux Performance Benchmarks

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Graphics/Benchmarks
Ubuntu

At the end of January, Dell announced the Dell XPS 13 9380 Developer Edition laptop as an upgraded version of the XPS 9370 with now having Intel Whiskey Lake CPUs and other minor improvements. Over the past two weeks I've been testing out the Dell XPS 9380 with Intel Core i7 8565U processor with 256GB of NVMe SSD storage and 16GB of RAM. Here are benchmarks of the Dell XPS 9380 compared to several other laptops running Ubuntu Linux as well as looking at the system thermal and power consumption among other metrics.

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Also: Ubuntu 18.04.2 LTS Working To Be Released This Week With New Hardware Enablement Stack

GreenWithEnvy 0.11 Released For More Overclocking Potential Of NVIDIA GPUs On Linux

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Graphics/Benchmarks
Linux

GreenWithEnvy v0.11 has been released, the latest version of this third-party, open-source utility for altering the power limits of NVIDIA graphics cards on Linux as well as more overclocking information/controls than what is exposed through the NVIDIA Settings panel with the NVIDIA proprietary driver.

GreenWithEnvy depends upon the proprietary NVIDIA Linux driver as well as the CoolBits extension for doing the actual overclocking, but allows overclockers to make more informed choices thanks to historical charts of the thermal/power/clock data and other information not otherwise readily exposed from Linux GUI utilities for NVIDIA graphics processors. GreenWithEnvy also allows manipulating the fan curve and more.

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Plasma Pass 1.0.0

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Games: King of Cards, GOG, Blade Symphony and Monster Logic

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    While it has no clear release date other than this year, Monster Logic certainly looks like a sweet programming puzzle game that's coming to Linux.

All-in-One Messaging Application Franz 5 Sees First Stable Release

After 24 beta releases, Franz, an all-in-one messaging application, has reached version 5.0.0 stable. Besides being the first Franz 5 stable release, the latest 5.0.0 version brings automatic spellcheck language detection, an option to quit Franz from the Windows taskbar, updated Electron to version 4.0.4 (from 4.0.2), and small bugfixes and improvements. Franz is a free Electron application for Windows, Linux and Mac that combines almost 70 chat and messaging services into a single window that can run in the background, with multi-account support, notifications and a system tray, spell checking, and other useful features. Read more

5 Good Open Source Speech Recognition/Speech-to-Text Systems

A speech-to-text (STT) system is as its name implies; A way of transforming the spoken words via sound into textual files that can be used later for any purpose. Speech-to-text technology is extremely useful. It can be used for a lot of applications such as a automation of transcription, writing books/texts using your own sound only, enabling complicated analyses on information using the generated textual files and a lot of other things. In the past, the speech-to-text technology was dominated by proprietary software and libraries; Open source alternatives didn’t exist or existed with extreme limitations and no community around. This is changing, today there are a lot of open source speech-to-text tools and libraries that you can use right now. Here we list 5 of them. Read more