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Graphics/Benchmarks

Intel Graphics Performance: Ubuntu 17.04 vs. 17.10

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Graphics/Benchmarks

Given the Ubuntu 17.10 release this week and its massive desktop changes from GNOME Wayland to Mesa/kernel upgrades, we've been busy benchmarking this new Ubuntu OS release. Complementing the Radeon Ubuntu 17.04 vs. 17.10 gaming comparison are now some OpenGL/Vulkan benchmarks when using Intel Kabylake graphics hardware on Ubuntu 17.04, 17.10 with X.Org and Wayland, and the performance if upgrading against Linux/Mesa Git.

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Graphics and Games: RandR and AMDGPU, Opus Magnum

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Graphics/Benchmarks
Gaming
  • "NonDesktop" Proposed For RandR: Useful For VR & Apple Touch Bar Like Devices

    Besides Keith Packard working on the concept of resource leasing for the X.Org Server and resource leasing support for RandR, he's also now proposing a "NonDesktop" property for the Resize and Rotate protocol.

    The resource leasing has already been worked out as a candidate for the next update, RandR 1.6, while now this veteran X11 developer is proposing a new "NonDesktop" property for identifying outputs that are not conventional displays.

  • More AMDGPU Changes Queue For Linux 4.15

    Adding to the excitement of Linux 4.15, AMD has queued some more changes that were sent in today for DRM-Next.

    Already for Linux 4.15, the AMDGPU Direct Rendering Manager driver should have the long-awaited "DC" display stack that brings Vega/Raven display support, HDMI/DP audio, atomic mode-setting and more. Other pull requests have also brought in a new ioctl, UVD video encode ring support on Polaris, transparent huge-pages DMA support, PowerPlay clean-ups, and many fixes, among other low-level improvements.

  • Opus Magnum, the latest puzzle game from Zachtronics, is released into Early Access

    The developers behind the challenging puzzle games TIS-100 and SHENZEN I/O are at it again and have released their latest title into Steam’s Early Access today.

  • Open your wallets, there's some great Linux games on sale right now

    It's time to throw your wallet at your screen, as we're going to take a look at some awesome Linux games on sale.

Graphics: Mesa 17.2.3, Libinput 1.9 and More

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Graphics/Benchmarks
  • mesa 17.2.3

    Mesa 17.2.3 is now available.

    In this release we have:

    The Vulkan drivers ANV and RADV have multiple small fixes.

    The EGL code has improved handling of the new wl_dmabuf codepath.

    SWR no longer crashes when checking environment variables.

    Other gallium drivers have also seen updates - freedreno, nouveau and radeonsi. The gallivm module, used by llvmpipe et al. has gained little endian PPC64 fixes.

  • Mesa 17.2.3 Offers Vulkan Fixes, Gallium3D Updates

    Mesa 17.2.3 is now available as the latest bi-weekly update for this current stable driver series.

  • [ANNOUNCE] libinput 1.9.0

    libinput 1.9 is now available. As expected, not a lot of changes since the
    rc2: a few test fixes, a fix to stop excessive logging and an extra
    assert so we fail early in case of a bug.

  • Libinput 1.9 Released With Input Improvements, Requires Meson

    Peter Hutterer has today released libinput 1.9.0 as the latest version of this library used by both Wayland and X11 systems for unified input handling.

  • DRM Leasing Support To Land For Linux 4.15
  • Intel OpenGL Shader Cache Revised Once More

    The long ongoing work to implement an OpenGL/GLSL shader cache for the Intel Mesa driver has been revised once more with 32 new patches hitting the mailing list today.

Radeon Linux Gaming Performance: Ubuntu 17.04 vs. Ubuntu 17.10

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Graphics/Benchmarks

With Ubuntu 17.10 set to ship tomorrow that features just not an upgraded Linux kernel and Mesa 3D stack but also transitions from Unity 7 + X.Org to GNOME Shell + Wayland, here are some comparison gaming benchmarks on a few different AMD Radeon graphics cards.

Ubuntu 17.04 shipped six months ago with Linux 4.10 and Mesa 17.0.7 as the main graphics components for open-source driver users while now with Ubuntu 17.10 is the Linux 4.13 kernel and Mesa 17.2.2. The six months of improvements to Mesa alone are massive for Intel and Radeon users with the RADV/ANV Vulkan drivers maturing much over this time (17.10 still doesn't ship with the Vulkan drivers, but are just a sudo apt install mesa-vulkan-drivers away) as well as many performance improvements and new extensions for the growing number of bundled OpenGL drivers. If you read Phoronix daily, you should already be well versed on the many Mesa accomplishments over this time span.

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Linux and Graphics: AMD and AGL

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Graphics/Benchmarks
Linux

Linux and Graphics: AMD, Linux 4.14 LTS, Etnaviv Gallium3D

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Graphics/Benchmarks
Linux
  • Linux 4.14 Ensures The "Core Performance Boost" Bit Gets Set For AMD Ryzen CPUs

    Recently making waves in our forums was talk of a kernel patch to address a case where the AMD CPB (Core Performance Boost) isn't being exposed by Ryzen processors. Here's more details on that and some benchmarks.

    Being talked about recently is f7f3dc0: "CPUID Fn8000_0007_EDX[CPB] is wrongly 0 on models up to B1. But they do support CPB (AMD's Core Performance Boosting cpufreq CPU feature), so fix that."

  • Linus Torvalds Is Confident That Linux Kernel 4.14 LTS Will Arrive on November 5

    Development of Linux 4.14, the next LTS (Long Term Support) kernel series, continues with the fifth RC (Release Candidate) milestone, which was announced by Linus Torvalds himself this past weekend.

    According to Linus Torvalds, things have finally starting to calm down for the development of the Linux 4.14 LTS kernel, and it looks like the RC5 snapshot is smaller than he would have expected, at least smaller than last week's RC4, which is a good thing, meaning that there won't be need for eight RCs during this cycle.

  • Etnaviv Gallium3D Is Almost To OpenGL 2.0 Compliance

    The Etnaviv Gallium3D driver that provides reverse-engineered, open-source graphics support for Vivante graphics hardware is almost to exposing OpenGL 2.0.

    Etnaviv contributor Christian Gmeiner today posted a set of patches for adding occlusion queries support to the driver. The code at just over one thousand lines of code is the last major feature needed for exposing desktop OpenGL 2.0 capabilities with this community-driven driver.

  • AMD Developers Begin Making Open-Source FreeSync/AdaptiveSync Plans

    While the AMDGPU DC code is expected to land for Linux 4.15 with goodies like Vega display support, HDMI/DP audio, and atomic mode-setting, one of the sought after display features won't be initially supported: FreeSync or the VESA-backed AdaptiveSync.

    As we've known for a while, while AMDGPU DC fills out the requirements for being able to support FreeSync, the last bits of the implementation are not present as the interfaces are basically yet to be decided among the open-source driver developers. While AMD can post their existing FreeSync code as found in AMDGPU-PRO hybrid driver, they are trying to come up with a more standardized interface that will satisfy the other upstream Linux driver developers too that might want to support AdaptiveSync.

Graphics and Games: AMDGPU DC, Vulkan, GOG

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Graphics/Benchmarks
Gaming
  • More Pre-4.15 AMDGPU DC Patches To Test Out This Weekend

    For Radeon RX Vega Linux users or those with newer Radeon GPUs and just wanting to make use of HDMI/DP audio, there are some new "AMDGPU DC" patches ready for testing this weekend.

    While AMDGPU DC is being staged as a pull request finally for Linux 4.15, the work hasn't yet settled down as AMD developers continue taming this massive code-base of more than 120,000 lines of code. Just recently in fact were another 100+ patches for this display code that allows Vega/Raven display support, HDMI/DP audio, atomic mode-setting, and other display feature updates long sought after by Radeon users.

  • Vulkan 1.0.63 Introduces Global Priority Support

    Vulkan 1.0.63 is now available as the latest minor update to this high performance graphics/compute API.

    As usual, Vulkan 1.0.63 is mostly made up of document corrections and clarifications. There is though one new extension.

  • Humble Bundle has been acquired by IGN

    This is rather unsettling to see, Humble Bundle has now officially joined with the massive media site IGN.

Mesa 17.3 Coming Soon, X.Org Server 1.19.5 is Out

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Graphics/Benchmarks
  • Mesa 17.3 Will Be Branching Soon For Releasing In Mid-November

    Feature development for Mesa 17.3 will be over soon in order to get this quarterly update to Mesa3D shipping next month.

    Release manager Emil Velikov is planning to issue the feature freeze and first release candidate next Friday, 20 October. That will mark the deadline for getting major features/improvements into Mesa 17.3, after which point it will be reserved for bug fixes.

  • xorg-server 1.19.5

    One regression fix since 1.19.4 (mea culpa), and fixes for CVEs 2017- 12176 through 2017-12187. C is a terrible language, please stop writing code in it.

  • X.Org Server 1.19.5 Released To Fix Another Handful Of Security Vulnerabilities

    Ouch, so basically a lot of potential for buffer overflows. Sadly, this is not the first time we have seen a big batch of X.Org Security vulnerabilities and security researchers in the past have generally characterized X.Org security as even worse than it looks.

7-Way Linux Distribution Comparison On The Intel Core i7 8700K

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Graphics/Benchmarks

Our latest benchmarking of Intel's 8th Gen Core "Coffee Lake" processors entailed seeing how well the i7-8700K performs on a variety of modern Linux distributions. Tested for this comparison was Ubuntu 17.10, Antergos 17.10, openSUSE Tumbleweed, Clear Linux, Debian Testing, Solus 3, and Fedora 26.

With these seven GNU/Linux distributions they were tested out-of-the-box following a clean install on the i7-8700K setup. Some highlights from these distributions include:

The Arch-based Antergos 17.10 rolling distribution has Linux 4.13.5, GNOME Shell, Mesa 17.2.2, GCC 7.2.0, and EXT4 by default.

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Kernel and Graphics: LTS, NVIDIA, Mir 0.28, RADV

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Graphics/Benchmarks
Linux
  • Linux LTS Kernel Support Extended to 6 Years

    Despite being a free and open source OS, Linux has one of the quickest development cycles. Every 70 days, a major new version of the Linux kernel rolls out. This deprecates any older versions except for the few Long Term Support releases. In a sign of changing times, the Linux kernel lifetime is getting a major boost. From now on, the Linux LTS kernel will be supported for a whole 6 years. Jumping up to 6 years is a tripling of the current 2 year support period. This is especially goods news for Android.

  • A Reverse-Engineered Tegra Video Decode Driver Steps Closer To Mainline
  • NVIDIA Releases Linux Graphics Debugger 2.2

    NVIDIA has today released an updated version of their Linux Graphics Debugger to help game/application developers in analyzing issues and performance problems around OpenGL 4.x on GeForce/Quadro GPUs.

  • RADV Vulkan Driver Gets An On-Disk Shader Cache

    The RADV Radeon Vulkan driver in Mesa now supports an on-disk shader cache.

    Timothy Arceri working for Valve who previously spearheaded the RadeonSI OpenGL on-disk shader cache support has added a similar on-disk shader cache for the RADV Vulkan driver. Vulkan supports the concept of a pipeline cache for reusing cached objects between pipelines and runs of a game/application.

  • Another Minor Performance Optimization For RADV

    While Timothy Arceri working for Valve was busy wiring up an on-disk shader cache for RADV, Samuel Pitoiset working for this gaming giant has been tackling some additional optimizations.

  • Mir 0.28 Arrives As A Late Addition To Ubuntu 17.10

    Not that Mir is playing a pivotal role in Ubuntu 17.10 now that the transition has occurred to GNOME Shell and Wayland for this release, the new Mir release should make it into the archive. Mir 1.0 was expected up until yesterday when it was announced Mir 1.0 would be released as Mir 0.28.

  • The RADV Vulkan driver for AMD GPUs now has a shader cache in Mesa, plus more Mesa news
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Linux 4.10 To Linux 4.15 Kernel Benchmarks

The ThinkPad X1 Carbon has been enjoying its time on Linux 4.15. In addition to the recent boot time tests and kernel power comparison, here are some raw performance benchmarks looking at the speed from Linux 4.10 through Linux 4.15 Git. With this Broadwell-era Core i7 5600U laptop with 8GB RAM, HD Graphics, and 128GB SATA 3.0 SSD with Ubuntu 17.10 x86_64, the Linux 4.10 through 4.15 Git mainline kernels were benchmarked. Each one was tested "out of the box" and the kernel builds were obtained from the Ubuntu Mainline Kernel archive. Read more