AMD's Radeon 7000 GPU Gets Improved Open Source Drivers With 2D acceleration

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salgado18

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I'm sorry if it's an offensive comment to anyone, since I only use Windows and OSX, but why wouldn't Linux users use the proprietary but fully supported Catalyst driver? Why stick to open source, if open source is not giving good enough results, and the alternative is free?
 

11796pcs

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[citation][nom]glob[/nom]Pathetic.[/citation]
It is pathetic, but if you ran a business would you waste valuable resources developing a driver for 0.5% (a guess, but probably a decent one) of your consumers? Probably not. What AMD should do is work closely with the people who want these drivers, give them the information they need and let them do the work.
 

jonjonjon

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[citation][nom]salgado18[/nom]I'm sorry if it's an offensive comment to anyone, since I only use Windows and OSX, but why wouldn't Linux users use the proprietary but fully supported Catalyst driver? Why stick to open source, if open source is not giving good enough results, and the alternative is free?[/citation]
its because they don't install anything that's not open source on their computer. which begs the question what open source games do they actually play? who cares about linux? amd should focus on fixing their horrible drivers for 99% of their customers that don't use linux.
 

husker

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[citation][nom]11796pcs[/nom]It is pathetic, but if you ran a business would you waste valuable resources developing a driver for 0.5% (a guess, but probably a decent one) of your consumers? Probably not. What AMD should do is work closely with the people who want these drivers, give them the information they need and let them do the work.[/citation]
Because once they agree to work with open source developers AMD is on the hook. Best case scenario is the linux driver is great and everyone is happy. But AMD has to look at the worst case scenario: The linux developer writes a crappy driver, and it is actually worse than AMD's official driver, then that hurts AMD. Also if said crappy open source driver causes the card to burn up, then the customer is calling AMD and asking for a refund. Also if said crappy driver causes the card to burn up, starts a small fire which grows to burn down the house, AMD is on the hook to to pay for a lot of damages because nobody is going to bother suing a broke Linux developer when they can go after a big corporation like AMD.
 

blppt

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I think one of the major issues (if they operate anything like Nvidia in this area) is fear that proprietary driver technology would be reverse engineered or stolen by competitors if they released it all via open source. Thats been a part of Nvidia's reasoning in the past. As for the reason why linux users hate using closed-source drivers as part of a kernel, its a philosophy that by using such software that they are tainting the kernel. Whereas, simply using closed source/commercial software doesnt generally affect the kernel. I personally don't care at all, and always prefer the much faster closed source binaries, but thats the way they feel.
 

annymmo

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[citation][nom]salgado18[/nom]I'm sorry if it's an offensive comment to anyone, since I only use Windows and OSX, but why wouldn't Linux users use the proprietary but fully supported Catalyst driver? Why stick to open source, if open source is not giving good enough results, and the alternative is free?[/citation]

Because the ones who write proprietary software don't give a crap about quality and being able to use your hardware to the fullest. Also how long they give support is a decision on their side. If they decide to stop support and driver improvements because it's not profitable. "Tough for you buddy. You should have bought our newer products."

It's this attitude that is kinda unfair to the consumer in general.
Why not even just make the software open source so the community can fix bugs and do things they care about. This does not require an ongoing investment.
 
G

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"What AMD should do is work closely with the people who want these drivers, give them the information they need and let them do the work."

This is exactly what AMD does already. You can't simply open source AMD's proprietary drivers because of DRM certification (HDCP et all), licensed third party intellectual property and other various reasons.

AMD devotes a small team of about 5 people to work on their open source drivers. They must work on technical information that goes through a extremely lengthy internal review process so they can't be sued. The 7000's series support has been longer than previous releases because of the new GCN architecture. Now that the GCN framework is in place the 8000's series support should effectively be day one. Given that AMD's financial position is very weak you cannot AMD to have anything but a skeleton crew to service an extremely small (but important) section of the market. If AMD's fortunes improve and Linux market share grows you should expect things to change in this area.
 

randomizer

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[citation][nom]salgado18[/nom]I'm sorry if it's an offensive comment to anyone, since I only use Windows and OSX, but why wouldn't Linux users use the proprietary but fully supported Catalyst driver? Why stick to open source, if open source is not giving good enough results, and the alternative is free?[/citation]
Those who use open source drivers usually do so for idealistic reasons or simply because proprietary drivers don't like to play ball with the rest of their system (which they often don't as they are not built to integrate well).

[citation][nom]husker[/nom]...AMD is on the hook to to pay for a lot of damages because nobody is going to bother suing a broke Linux developer when they can go after a big corporation like AMD.[/citation]
These are "official" drivers. They are primarily developed by AMD, not "broke" 3rd party developers. The problem is that there are so few (human) resources dedicated to this piece of software that it doesn't get proper maintenance.

[citation][nom]blppt[/nom]I think one of the major issues (if they operate anything like Nvidia in this area) is fear that proprietary driver technology would be reverse engineered or stolen by competitors if they released it all via open source. Thats been a part of Nvidia's reasoning in the past.[/citation]
It's also a very bad argument. No competitor is going to have any use for a driver that is designed for your architecture; the hardware is completely different. Yes, it would provide a better understanding of how your product works, but that doesn't provide much benefit in the end.

No competitor will reverse engineer your product based on your drivers and incorporate design elements into their own products. Patent lawyers will be tying up courts for a century if they did this.
 

dozerman

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[citation][nom]salgado18[/nom]I'm sorry if it's an offensive comment to anyone, since I only use Windows and OSX, but why wouldn't Linux users use the proprietary but fully supported Catalyst driver? Why stick to open source, if open source is not giving good enough results, and the alternative is free?[/citation]
I'm not sure. As a Linux user, I have no problem with the proprietary drivers, but then you have these diehard FOSS guys who just want to throw a fit every time proprietary software comes out.
 

wdmfiber

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Code breaking, brute force attacks (exhaustive key search). You run Linux and want the most powerful Radeon GPU, so preferably the 7000 series (ideally several 7970's in crossfire).
 

husker

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[citation][nom]randomizer[/nom]These are "official" drivers. They are primarily developed by AMD, not "broke" 3rd party developers. The problem is that there are so few (human) resources dedicated to this piece of software that it doesn't get proper maintenance.[/citation]
My comment (if you go back and look) was a response to someone who suggested that AMD WORK WITH 3RD PARTY DEVELOPERS so they can develop linux drivers for themselves, rather than use AMD's official drivers. My response pointed out why AMD does not encourage this type of 3rd party development of drivers for their hardware: Because it will open them up to liability issues for problems when such 3RD PARTY drivers are developed with AMD's consent. Get it?
 

11796pcs

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Also if said crappy open source driver causes the card to burn up, then the customer is calling AMD and asking for a refund.
AMD does not have to endorse any drivers created by a third-party team they aid. I'm sure they could include a disclaimer. Using the proper drivers it's probably impossible to burn up a card and therefore AMD could dispel any liability by saying that the consumer was using unofficial drivers.
 

alextheblue

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[citation][nom]11796pcs[/nom]Using the proper drivers it's probably impossible to burn up a card and therefore AMD could dispel any liability by saying that the consumer was using unofficial drivers.[/citation]Kind of hard to prove what drivers they were running. Anyway the best aid they can offer others is to release open source drivers, which they just did. Not to mention I've seen "proper" drivers from Nvidia that didn't think adjusting the fan speed was important even when the GPU was hot enough to boil water. Thankfully the machine crashed before anything melted. So there goes the theory of proper drivers never causing issues like that.

Personally in the rare instance I use Linux, I don't give a rat's arse if the drivers are proprietary or not. But everyone is entitled to their opinion, even if it means they like less performance and fewer features. As to why the open source drivers from AMD are not as good, read Informed Linux User's post above.
 

starcraftmazter

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[citation][nom]salgado18[/nom]I'm sorry if it's an offensive comment to anyone, since I only use Windows and OSX, but why wouldn't Linux users use the proprietary but fully supported Catalyst driver? Why stick to open source, if open source is not giving good enough results, and the alternative is free?[/citation]
Because proprietary is the opposite of free. Wouldn't expect an apple user to understand.
 

The_Trutherizer

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Firmware and drivers are inextricably tied to hardware. It's not your usual run of the mill software anyway - It's not just some cute new contact manager. A lot of information about the hardware is contained in the drivers. As far as I'm concerned insisting on opensource drivers is boorish. AMD owns their technological innovation and these yahoos should dry their britches.
 
[citation][nom]husker[/nom]Because once they agree to work with open source developers AMD is on the hook. Best case scenario is the linux driver is great and everyone is happy. But AMD has to look at the worst case scenario: The linux developer writes a crappy driver, and it is actually worse than AMD's official driver, then that hurts AMD. Also if said crappy open source driver causes the card to burn up, then the customer is calling AMD and asking for a refund. Also if said crappy driver causes the card to burn up, starts a small fire which grows to burn down the house, AMD is on the hook to to pay for a lot of damages because nobody is going to bother suing a broke Linux developer when they can go after a big corporation like AMD.[/citation]

Anyone looking for open source Linux drivers is very unlikely to yell at AMD for driver issues.
 
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