Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 9th Sep 2010 17:40 UTC, submitted by kragil
Linux Ahem. I just had to write that all-caps headline. Broadcom's wireless chips - used by just about everybody in this industry - have been a major pain in the bum for Linux users, because the company did not release open source drivers. Workarounds had to be created, lots of pain was had in the process, but now, Broadcom has finally seen the light: they have open sourced their wireless Linux drivers.
Permalink for comment 440217
To read all comments associated with this story, please click here.
RE: Quality
by lemur2 on Fri 10th Sep 2010 02:09 UTC in reply to "Quality"
lemur2
Member since:
2007-02-17

How long ago did ATI / AMD release their graphics drivers as open source? Aren't they still bad compared to NVidia's?


ATI / AMD have never released their graphics drivers as open source. Rather, AMD released the programming specifications for their graphics chips, so that open source programmers could write a new open source driver.

Here they are:
http://www.x.org/docs/AMD/

As you can see, for example, the specifications to program 3D functionality for ATI R600/R700 GPUs were released on 07-May-2009. This means that the open source programmers have had just over one year to write their driver for 3D functionality.

This has nothing at all to do with the closed-source proprietary binary driver for Linux from ATI, called fglrx. This driver has improved considerably in recent times, and is now on par with the nVidia closed-source proprietary binary driver for Linux.

The new open source driver written for Linux for ATI chips by open source coders is called xf86-video-ati. It basically works, but it is still under heavy development. Being only a few years old, much of it much younger even than that, performance-wise, stability-wise and feature-wise, it is not on par as yet with either of the closed-source binary drivers for Linux mentioned above.

Edited 2010-09-10 02:27 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 4