Linked by Michael on Fri 7th Jan 2011 23:30 UTC
AMD "On the same day that we learn VIA's Linux support is basically dead and after a troubling week for Intel with regards to open-source graphics support for their new Sandy Bridge CPUs, Advanced Micro Devices has come forward and released open-source graphics driver support for their AMD Radeon HD 6000 series of graphics cards."
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Currently they are only focusing on getting everything working on all R300+ cards and finalising Gallium3D before they can begin performance optimisation. Why get everything tweaked for performance with half the spec implemented only to have to redo half of the optimisation to get more features in place?

Having said that, I noticed
that the Page Flipping support for all models has recently been marked as "Done" (requires kernel 2.6.38).

Page Flipping was said to be one thing that was relatively low-hanging fruit, that is to say it wasn't seen as too hard to do, it was being worked on, and it would yeild significant performance gains.

Accelerated video is still some way away, however XvMC and VDPAU may be coming to the ATI R600 Gallium3D driver as well as the R300 Gallium3D driver. This willwould allow those with Radeon HD 2000/3000/4000/5000 series graphics cards to enjoy accelerated video playback using GPU shaders beyond just the limited X-Video extension.

It seems that after the Linux 2.6.38 kernel is released, the Gallium3D open source drivers may become the default preference for Linux distributions instead of the classic mesa drivers.

At that point, maybe sometime this year, the open source drivers for Radeon GPUs would begin to challenge the closed source drivers certainly for functionality and perhaps for performance as well.

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