Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 17th Sep 2007 20:09 UTC, submitted by Michael
AMD "Not only is AMD providing the open-source community with their ATI GPU specifications, but they have also been partnering with Novell on the development of a new open-source display driver. We've been telling you about AMD's open-source work all month, and today the new driver is finally available for download. It is still very much a work in progress and isn't much further along than the open-source R500 Avivo driver. However, this new driver does support the Radeon HD 2000 (R600) family. This new X.Org driver is called RadeonHD."
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Awesome
by siimo on Mon 17th Sep 2007 20:59 UTC
siimo
Member since:
2006-06-22

I know this is just the start. Hopefully by this time next year there will be a perfectly working driver including 3D support :o).

Reply Score: 6

RE: Awesome
by Brandybuck on Tue 18th Sep 2007 02:11 UTC in reply to "Awesome"
Brandybuck Member since:
2006-08-27

Next year will be too late. I'm looking to build a new system in the next couple of months. I'm sick of being considered second class because I'm using FreeBSD instead of Linux. Since this driver won't be ready, I'll be going with an Intel chipset. You snooze you lose.

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: Awesome
by SEJeff on Tue 18th Sep 2007 02:25 UTC in reply to "RE: Awesome"
SEJeff Member since:
2005-11-05

If you are sick of being a second class citezen, do something about it. Write documentation, get people playing with, or learn to write code for FreeBSD. FreeBSD is pretty cool for what it is and still isn't too bad. The lack of really solid SMP support kills it for me though.

Open Source is about communities. Building them is the key to success. Financial backing also works.

Never underestimate the power of large numbers of people with common goals.

Reply Score: 6

RE[2]: Awesome
by sbergman27 on Tue 18th Sep 2007 02:28 UTC in reply to "RE: Awesome"
sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

"""
I'm sick of being considered second class because I'm using FreeBSD instead of Linux.
"""

Sorry to break it to you. But you are a third class citizen. We Linux users are second class. For what that's worth. I sincerely hope it helps... at least some.

But with the opening of the specs, in a year maybe we can *all* be equals... and choose a video chipset based upon merit and not upon which vendor is willing to throw us the most crumbs. :-)

Unfortunately, now the problem has simply changed focus from video to wifi. I've been playing this game for 20 years. And I sometimes wonder if we are really making progress, or if the problems are escalating about as fast as they are being solved. I think we are making progress. But it feels like a long walk up a fast treadmill.

Reply Score: 6

RE[3]: Awesome
by cyclops on Tue 18th Sep 2007 07:46 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Awesome"
cyclops Member since:
2006-03-12

"Unfortunately, now the problem has simply changed focus from video to wifi. I've been playing this game for 20 years. And I sometimes wonder if we are really making progress, or if the problems are escalating about as fast as they are being solved. I think we are making progress. But it feels like a long walk up a fast treadmill."

There is no we. There have been large areas of missing support in GNU's past, but the days of compatible hardware being included with a distribution are long gone. I remember sound cards where the major problem, and then linmodems which I'm not sure if there was ever a solution, or whether broadband simply overtook it. wi-fi has been a problem but support has been available for a long time, and growing. Unfortunately those who have been forced to rely on older kernels due to things like binary blobs simply haven't been able to take advantage.

Linux development and company interest is escalating at a rapid rate, and the code submitted routinely doubles. In fact the move has been not to buy hardware thats supported in Linux, but to *expect* and *demand* all hardware works. In many ways I suspect this is a step backward, as hardware companies often do not get the credit they deserve apart from a few notable exceptions.

The major difference in graphics cards is that the specifications are held by monopolistic companies due to the nature of the market, compared to other hardware components, with Intel holding about 60% of the market and AMD holding another 20%, a major problem has been overcome. Although I suspect very strongly that Linus' practicality(sic) and I use the word in the correct place...or I should say *short term solution* has been damaging to GNU for a long time with its "good enough"(sic) drivers, and its had far reaching effect that includes application support that takes advantage of such hardware. Its a shame that the kernel has neglected support for the desktop for its server; embedded market.

I say this knowing that hardware support by Linux is not universal, and although I only paint a rosy picture of the future I'm well aware than many of the universal drivers that Linux enjoys and other kernels will soon be a thing of the past due to Vista's overreaching DRM hardware specifications. It will be interesting times.

Edited 2007-09-18 07:49

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: Awesome
by siki_miki on Tue 18th Sep 2007 09:23 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Awesome"
siki_miki Member since:
2006-01-17

Yes, it is interesting to see that Linux kernel community stubborness is producing fruit and tech giants like AMD/ATI are bending back and cooperating.
In this case AMD realizes that they can benefit from symbiosis with Linux again (on GPGPU) just as they did with Opteron (i.e. AMD64 instruction set).

Reply Score: 4

RE[4]: Awesome
by sbergman27 on Wed 19th Sep 2007 03:57 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Awesome"
sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

Two things. First of all, I'm intrigued by your comment "There is no we." What do you mean by that, exactly?

But on the main topic... I do not recall a hardware support problem quite so frustrating as the current WiFi situation. Wifi is unreliable enough even under ideal circumstances. And the current situation with Linux is far from ideal. With winmodems, you could just avoid them. With winprinters, you could just avoid them. With sound cards, you could make sure that what you bought was soundblaster compatible.

But with wifi, support is spotty, vendors change model numbers more frequently than most of us change underwear, and to make matters even worse, you can get a Linksys model 6BX7 version 4.0 and get one chipset, or pick up the 6BX7 version 5.0 in the identical looking box on the shelf right next to it... and the chipset is from a completely different vendor. That is not really the exception. That is the common case.

Ironically, notebook buyers actually have it easier in this respect. They can buy a notebook with an intel chipset.

But if they make the wrong choice, they're stuck. I bought a Compaq presario. It has an HP branded mini-pci wifi card with a broadcom chipset. (yuck!) I ordered in an intel based mini-pci card and installed it. The bios complains that only HP cards are supported and the laptop refuses to boot. -System Halted-

Edited 2007-09-19 03:59

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Awesome
by cyclops on Wed 19th Sep 2007 10:15 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Awesome"
cyclops Member since:
2006-03-12

There is no we, because what you said was a lie. I doubt you linux credentials and this thread points it out.

I use lie; where I perhaps should use the term subterfuge; or ignorance.

I'm exited by the *next* generation of Linux based GNU. ; The combination of X.org 7.3+Linux 2.6.23+Compiz+Fuzion(whatever). Simply because so many of those niggles that power-users(sic) workaround have been fixed. It was actually frustrating to see so posts on X.org 7.3. I include such niggles as "Widescreen on Intel"; Native wireless drivers; Native r300-r400 support; Screen rotation+resolution fixes and a whole host of other problems that have plagued the desktop for too long, and hopefully will not be held back by pragmatic(sic) binary drivers.

Their is no we simply because I don't agree the main reason being I'm using wireless Linux right now. The 2.6.22 and 2.6.23 have been revolutionary in their wi-fi support. Buying a compatible wifi card/stick is trivial and cheap $10-$15 you can pick one from http://linuxwireless.org/. It doesn't help laptop owners with built in wi-fi because reasonably they don't want a cheap usb stick hanging out of their $1000 laptop, but I suspect wi-fi support has moved from spotty to good!? in the last two revisions of the kernel...and I mean native support rather than a wrapper to binary drivers. Unfortunately for GNU computability even today far from universal although its made large strides recently...and that trend is set to continue. Saying anything otherwise is a lie. I'd love to say that 10% or 95% of wireless chips are supported, and if you can point to any current figures I would love to see them.

Now your other point that separates the *you* from me, is that you lie about support for the xpress 200M chip that you say is in your machine, and you are part of that problem that I say will be fixed in the next generation of distribution or *now* if you technically capable. 3D on your chip has been available since June, and you seem blissfully unaware of whats happening on your own machine. Now if you would have said that good open-source drivers for what is based on a 5 year old chipset being available to GNU has been a failing linux I'd tend to agree, but lets talk about the *NOW*.

Linux has been typically bad in areas geared towards the GNU desktop, simply becuase Linux driven by companies only interested in the server. Times have changed you even acknowledge as much elsewhere. The next generation of Distributions move from power-user friendly to everybody. I'm very excited. It doesn't solve the artificial problems overstated elsewhere(codecs; those adobe products; cutting edge gaming).

Like I say. I paint a rosy picture...but I'm very aware that all kinds of problems remain, although those very problems you describe are gone.

Reply Score: 1

Good for AMD.
by systyrant on Mon 17th Sep 2007 21:06 UTC
systyrant
Member since:
2007-01-18

I'm happy to see AMD doing this. It's a boost for both the Open Source world and AMD/ATI.

Next time I'm in the market for a new video card I will definitely looking at ATI cards.

Reply Score: 10

v RE: Good for AMD.
by Joe User on Tue 18th Sep 2007 12:45 UTC in reply to "Good for AMD."
I've been whining about ATi for years
by korpenkraxar on Mon 17th Sep 2007 21:13 UTC
korpenkraxar
Member since:
2005-09-10

... but this truly brings tears to my eyes. AMD, please forgive my unfaithful Core2 flirt, I'll never turn my back on you again :-)

Reply Score: 11

Great news
by B. Janssen on Mon 17th Sep 2007 21:25 UTC
B. Janssen
Member since:
2006-10-11

AMD apparently planned this long-term. I am taking this for a good sign and look forward to more and more free specifications.

Reply Score: 10

Many drivers
by leos on Mon 17th Sep 2007 21:47 UTC
leos
Member since:
2005-09-21

Suddenly there are so many drivers out there. There's the opensource ati driver (radeon), then there's the closed source fglrx, and the avivo, and now radeonhd.

Aside from avivo, which has been discontinued, does anyone know what will happen to this situation?

Why are there two open source drivers for radeon now? Is radeonhd meant to replace the radeon driver, or is radeonhd only for newer cards? Seems like there should only be one.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Many drivers
by joelito_pr on Mon 17th Sep 2007 21:54 UTC in reply to "Many drivers"
joelito_pr Member since:
2005-07-07

I believe that the old radeon driver is for the old cards while the radeonhd is for the newer ones, of course, they could merge in the future.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Many drivers
by SEJeff on Mon 17th Sep 2007 22:05 UTC in reply to "Many drivers"
SEJeff Member since:
2005-11-05

The radeon driver is for mainly for r200/r300 ati chipsets *only* and supports 3d enough to enable composite with compiz decently.

According to Jerome Glisse, the avivo lead developer, work has mostly stopped on it. The focus will be on the newer radeonhd driver for full 2d and 3d support. Currently, the radeonhd driver only supports the r600 based cards so I guess the r400/r500 guys are out of luck for the time being.

http://www.x.org/wiki/radeon
http://cgit.freedesktop.org/xorg/driver/xf86-video-radeonhd

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: Many drivers
by mjg59 on Mon 17th Sep 2007 22:11 UTC in reply to "RE: Many drivers"
mjg59 Member since:
2005-10-17

RadeonHD should support r500 as well, and r400 is already supported by the radeon driver.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Many drivers
by nhubbard on Tue 18th Sep 2007 03:57 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Many drivers"
nhubbard Member since:
2006-10-03

Just tried it on my 515 (X1300) card. It couldn't identify my chip and puked. Oh well.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Many drivers
by smitty on Mon 17th Sep 2007 22:56 UTC in reply to "RE: Many drivers"
smitty Member since:
2005-10-13

The old radeon driver is actually 2-in-1, there's one that supports the older R100/R200 chips (up to 9250) very well, then there's another that supports R300/R400 which works well for some and poorly for others (up to X850, maybe X1300?).

The newer avivo driver supported R500 chips, and would have been expanded to R600 as well (X1400?-X2900), and this is the one that is being replaced by the RadeonHD driver. The older radeon driver is far enough along that I doubt it will ever be replaced. When specs come out for these cards (assuming they ever do, i'm betting it will be a couple years in the future) they'll just modify the old driver rather than starting a new one from scratch.

Reply Score: 3

Haiku soon too?
by scottmc on Mon 17th Sep 2007 21:55 UTC
scottmc
Member since:
2005-07-08

Ok Euan, time to start hacking to get this going on Haiku ;)

Reply Score: 2

RE: Haiku soon too?
by euank on Mon 17th Sep 2007 22:16 UTC in reply to "Haiku soon too?"
euank Member since:
2006-01-02

Whoa there! You'll maybe have something useful by christmas if your lucky! ;) AFAIK performance right now is at vesa levels... Need 2D acceleration too you know. ;)

Reply Score: 3

favourite
by razor85 on Mon 17th Sep 2007 23:06 UTC
razor85
Member since:
2006-12-08

AMD/ATI you are my favourite one, i already tough of you before getting this am2 and radeon hd. Thanks for thinking back on me ;)

Reply Score: 1

v When can I use it with Beryl effects?
by Howie S on Mon 17th Sep 2007 23:41 UTC
ATI Express 200M support?
by sbergman27 on Mon 17th Sep 2007 23:56 UTC
sbergman27
Member since:
2005-07-24

Does anyone know if the frenzy of openness from ATI is likely to result in good open source support for the popular ATI Express 200M laptop chipset? I have a Compaq Presario which I use the open source drivers on, since I prefer a completely OSS machine. (There's no substitute for the warm fuzzies.) ;-)

The lack of 3D is not really a problem. But it *would* be nice if it worked.

Reply Score: 3

RE: ATI Express 200M support?
by smitty on Tue 18th Sep 2007 01:03 UTC in reply to "ATI Express 200M support?"
smitty Member since:
2005-10-13

Supposedly, yes. But there is no timeline and they're focusing on the recent hardware first, so I wouldn't expect it anytime soon.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: ATI Express 200M support?
by sbergman27 on Tue 18th Sep 2007 01:07 UTC in reply to "RE: ATI Express 200M support?"
sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

Are you insinuating that my laptop is *old*!?!?!? ;-)

Reply Score: 1

shapeshifter Member since:
2006-09-19

Are you insinuating that my laptop is *old*!?!?!? ;-)


If you're an IT pro and a Linux user, why would you buy a laptop with an ATI chip in the first place?
Why didn't you support Nvidia and buy a laptop with their chip instead?

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: ATI Express 200M support?
by leos on Tue 18th Sep 2007 01:23 UTC in reply to "ATI Express 200M support?"
leos Member since:
2005-09-21

Yeah I'm in the same boat. The latest radeon drivers have been getting better, but they're still quite buggy and slow. I don't care so much about 3D either, but having reasonable 2D acceleration and output hotplugging would be really nice.

Reply Score: 2

sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

I've found the 2D acceleration to be OK. And I've never even tried output hotplug. It's just nice to be able to have a totally OSS machine without feeling like a second class citizen. All my Unix career, since 1988, I've spent feeling that I'm a second class citizen in one way or another.

It's kind of like that old "Wisk" commercial: You try rubbing them out, and soaking them out, and you still get "You're a second class citizen!". ;-p

Reply Score: 1

I'm sorry, ATI.
by sorpigal on Tue 18th Sep 2007 00:02 UTC
sorpigal
Member since:
2005-11-02

I always liked you and your cards. But ever since I switched to Linux and XFree86 4.x I have been flirting with your arch-rival, nVidia. It was a slow courtship; approach and avoidance as I read articles and setup instructions, and eventually that first intimate purchase. I found that their proprietary driver was good enough, I secretly liked that my 3D acceleration worked well, but I was always ashamed to admit it in public. I have said many sweet things about nVidia's Linux support and made fun of you behind your back. But I see now that you were The One! I should never have doubted you, ATI. I should have stuck with your cards through the thick and thin. I'm sorry, please forgive me. I am yours forever and I will never doubt again.

Reply Score: 3

RE: I'm sorry, ATI.
by sbergman27 on Tue 18th Sep 2007 00:12 UTC in reply to "I'm sorry, ATI."
sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

"""
I should never have doubted you, ATI. I should have stuck with your cards through the thick and thin. I'm sorry, please forgive me. I am yours forever and I will never doubt again.
"""

I have some experience with your once-discarded, and now new-found love. I found pin 14 to be particularly pleasurable.

HTH,
Steve

Edited 2007-09-18 00:13

Reply Score: 2

RE: I'm sorry, ATI.
by shapeshifter on Tue 18th Sep 2007 18:50 UTC in reply to "I'm sorry, ATI."
shapeshifter Member since:
2006-09-19

I always liked you and your cards. But ever since I switched to Linux and XFree86 4.x I have been flirting with your arch-rival, nVidia. It was a slow courtship; approach and avoidance as I read articles and setup instructions, and eventually that first intimate purchase. I found that their proprietary driver was good enough, I secretly liked that my 3D acceleration worked well, but I was always ashamed to admit it in public. I have said many sweet things about nVidia's Linux support and made fun of you behind your back. But I see now that you were The One! I should never have doubted you, ATI. I should have stuck with your cards through the thick and thin. I'm sorry, please forgive me. I am yours forever and I will never doubt again.


Hehe, I hope you're being sarcastic.
Because I am not so forgiving.
I don't think I'll forget the last decade+ of ATI's anti-linux behavior, utter incompetence and inability to come up with quality Windows drivers, and lack of support for older products.
Hopefully AMD fired most of former ATI staff and brought in some new people that will be more competent.

And AMD better have a high quality 3D Linux driver for most of their cards released just like Nvidia is doing.

Releasing hardware specifications is nice but they owe their customers full Linux support and not just hand over their responsibility onto the OSS community.

The fact is that it's thanks to Nvidia that I've been able to play 3D games like Quake, UT2K4, ET, Tribes in Linux without having to boot into Windows.

During the last decade I've gotten used to pretty much ignoring ATI, and acting as if it did not exist.

I'll check every few months AMD's website and see if they have regular releases of video drivers for Linux.
And I'll check the forums to see if the drivers are good.

But for now my next video card will still be Nvidia.
AMD will have to work very hard to earn my support for their CPU's too. They've had way too many screw ups and lost me as a customer long time ago. Been an Intel man for last 5+ years.

Reply Score: 3

RE: I'm sorry, ATI.
by aliquis on Wed 19th Sep 2007 01:33 UTC in reply to "I'm sorry, ATI."
aliquis Member since:
2005-07-23

Yeah right, until Nvidia opens up their drivers ;D

Reply Score: 1

amd karma +1
by nzMM on Tue 18th Sep 2007 04:37 UTC
nzMM
Member since:
2006-06-22

how the world can change in such short periods of time. I guess ill be getting an amd/ati card next time round!

my only hope is that this decision reaps both amd/ati and the free software community much bounty.

Reply Score: 1

overall, a good thing
by niemau on Tue 18th Sep 2007 05:35 UTC
niemau
Member since:
2007-06-28

overall, i suppose this is all a good thing.

very surprised, however, that nobody's shown any suspicion of novell's involvement. it just seems odd that one minute everybody openly hates novell. now, everybody just turns a blind eye to their involvement with AMD/ATI for this radeon driver.

i promise, i'm not trolling here. i'm just trying to figure this whole thing out. considering AMD (and NVIDIA) used IP/patent problems as reasons (excuses) not to release info in the past, and novell obviously being a virtual buffet of IP/patent controversy of late, wouldn't it be prudent to be wary? i'm all for OSS 3D drivers. but, come on.

maybe i've just missed something. i just expected at least some commentary on this from somewhere. is everybody just so enraptured by the possibility of future 3D goodness that they're afraid to look a gift horse in the mouth (so to speak)?

i'm sure there'll be rabid hordes of you with torches and pitchforks at my door for questioning this. but, i really would be interested in some insight on this.

(cowers in fear)

Reply Score: 3

RE: overall, a good thing
by smitty on Tue 18th Sep 2007 06:30 UTC in reply to "overall, a good thing"
smitty Member since:
2005-10-13

There were some rumblings about this, but they died down when AMD released the exact same specs without NDA to everyone else. We'll see, there may be some future 3D specs that they'll keep under NDA and if so I bet a lot of the anti-Novell faction will start yelling again.

For the moment, at least, it seems like Novell isn't actually getting anything more than the rest of us, except probably a phone # they can call for help.

Reply Score: 3

RE: overall, a good thing
by shapeshifter on Tue 18th Sep 2007 19:08 UTC in reply to "overall, a good thing"
shapeshifter Member since:
2006-09-19

very surprised, however, that nobody's shown any suspicion of novell's involvement. it just seems odd that one minute everybody openly hates novell. now, everybody just turns a blind eye to their involvement with AMD/ATI for this radeon driver.


Nove..Who?
Are you talking about that company that used to have that Netwa..Netware software way back? And they got slaughtered by Microsoft because they were greedy and selfish bastards?

Umm, last time I heard they were walking around tugging at their Microsoft's momma's skirt.

Reply Score: 2

RE: overall, a good thing
by spikeb on Wed 19th Sep 2007 04:21 UTC in reply to "overall, a good thing"
spikeb Member since:
2006-01-18

novell has worked with AMD in regards to writing open drivers and things before, and it panned out fine.

Reply Score: 2