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Thread: What do you think the default R5xx/R6xx driver should be?

  1. #1
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    Ubuntu 8.10 Intrepid Ibex

    What do you think the default R5xx/R6xx driver should be?

    There are three drivers for ATI Radeon R500 and R600 based cards cards with 3D support on Ubuntu.

    --

    fglrx is the binary, officially supported driver which is suggested by Ubuntu to users on first boot (as a restricted driver).

    ati/radeon is the open-source default Ubuntu driver. The Hardy version doesn't support 3D on R5xx/R6xx. It is independently maintained by the community.

    radeonhd is the newest driver. It is developed by people who work outside but are paid by AMD, as well as developers from the the community. It shares the 3D component with ati/radeon but has different features in most other areas.

    --

    Now that all three drivers have 3D support (which is continually improving), which of ati/radeon and radeonhd should be the default for R5xx and R6xx cards in Ubuntu, and should fglrx continue to be suggested by the Restricted Drivers Manager if both of the open-source drivers support 3D and Compiz stably by the time Intrepid freezes?

  2. #2
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    Ubuntu Jaunty Jackalope (testing)

    Re: What do you think the default R5xx/R6xx driver should be?

    If 3d open source support is stable then I would presume it will be chosen over propriety.

    I dont really know what state the three drivers are in however.Never use ATI in my life and dont plan too.

  3. #3
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    Re: What do you think the default R5xx/R6xx driver should be?

    current fglrx driver is not working for me in Intrepid. Using the xorg-driver-fglrx from the repo. Giving me a white screen.
    With that being said...back to the question...
    I think the criteria should be whichever one supports the widest range of cards.

  4. #4
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    Re: What do you think the default R5xx/R6xx driver should be?

    I have been using radeonhd from git and it works well enough. There are occasional issues like cursor corruption but they seem to be rarer now (or have been fixed). It definitely doesn't crash anymore. I'll take a proper open source driver like this one without 3D over the fglrx blob any day, however radeonhd currently doesn't do any power management so the chipset's fan is likely to be on all the time, etc. Until power management is implemented, it's probably not safe to have this as the default driver. Then again, it beats just using vesa-fb and not getting any 2D acceleration.

  5. #5
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    Re: What do you think the default R5xx/R6xx driver should be?

    agreed. I won't use ATI until the RadeonHD driver is mature, stable, and works with all Radeon cards
    Thinkpad T400 | 14.1" LED Screen | Core 2 Duo T9400 | 3GB DDR3 | 320GB WD HD | intel 5300 | ATI 3470 & Intel 4500 GFX
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  6. #6
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    Re: What do you think the default R5xx/R6xx driver should be?

    I don't really see the point of the RadeonHD driver. The radeon driver gets support for new cards faster thanks to their use of AtomBIOS and has the codebase for the older cards to draw on for the newer cards. For example, the r500 cards are very similar to the r300 and r400 cards so it is much less work to get support for them. This is why the radeon driver supports compiz and everything with the r500 and (last time I checked) the RadeonHD driver almost had glxgears working.
    Travis Watkins
    Blog: Realist Anew
    Projects: Compiz

  7. #7
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    Re: What do you think the default R5xx/R6xx driver should be?

    Quote Originally Posted by Amaranth View Post
    I don't really see the point of the RadeonHD driver. The radeon driver gets support for new cards faster thanks to their use of AtomBIOS and has the codebase for the older cards to draw on for the newer cards. For example, the r500 cards are very similar to the r300 and r400 cards so it is much less work to get support for them. This is why the radeon driver supports compiz and everything with the r500 and (last time I checked) the RadeonHD driver almost had glxgears working.
    It's partially AMD funded, unlike ati/radeon.

  8. #8
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    Re: What do you think the default R5xx/R6xx driver should be?

    One of the radeon developers works for AMD...
    Travis Watkins
    Blog: Realist Anew
    Projects: Compiz

  9. #9
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    Re: What do you think the default R5xx/R6xx driver should be?

    Quote Originally Posted by Amaranth View Post
    I don't really see the point of the RadeonHD driver. The radeon driver gets support for new cards faster thanks to their use of AtomBIOS and has the codebase for the older cards to draw on for the newer cards. For example, the r500 cards are very similar to the r300 and r400 cards so it is much less work to get support for them. This is why the radeon driver supports compiz and everything with the r500 and (last time I checked) the RadeonHD driver almost had glxgears working.
    You would if you had an RV670 before others drivers supported it.

    In fact, radeonhd was the only driver supporting RV670 back then, long way before fglrx.

    I think radeonhd should be the default, as it's free enough to debian pick it and because DRI is in the way.

    radeonhd is a first-quality driver.
    Last edited by NLS___87; June 29th, 2008 at 12:09 AM.

  10. #10
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    Re: What do you think the default R5xx/R6xx driver should be?

    Yet the radeon driver has proven its worth by being the first to support r500 3d and supporting new ATI cards the day they are released.

    The radeon driver supports everything the radeonhd driver does plus support for older cards, r500 3d, and quick support (at least for 2d) for new cards.

    I really see no reason to use the radeonhd driver, it just has no use.
    Last edited by Amaranth; June 29th, 2008 at 12:32 AM.
    Travis Watkins
    Blog: Realist Anew
    Projects: Compiz

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