Linked by Eugenia Loli on Tue 18th Apr 2006 17:49 UTC
Linux Efforts to bring glitzy new graphics to Linux are fueling an old conflict: Does proprietary software belong in open-source Linux? The issue involves software modules called drivers, which plug into the kernel at the heart of the open-source operating system. Drivers let software communicate with hardware such as network adapters, hard drives and video cards.
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Member since:


Nvidia and ATI should protect their IPs. If you want an open-source implementation of a 3d video card then: Make a video card, write the needed software and be happy. Of course having to deal with all sorts of patents and legal mojo could hinder the road to freedom.

I use proprietary drivers and I like it. ;)

Reply Score: 3

sc3252 Member since:

Why dont you actualy try and use ati drivers before posting. ati shouldnt have a right to develop drivers any more. If you have used their(ati) drivers you would know that open source 2d drivers are 10x better at being stable than anything ati has or has had. I would go off and list 30 problems alone with ati drivers, but I will spare you from the list. Just to name one problem, well my card would hard lock some times when logging out of gnome(doesnt happen with open source or nvidia drivers).

I am not seriously saying ati shouldnt be developing drivers, but in no way should they ever be included with the kernel.

Reply Parent Score: 2

Mitarai Member since:

I have an ATI 9800 pro with the latest propietary drivers, no problems here.

Reply Parent Score: 1

SpasmaticSeacow Member since:

I would add that the open-source Nvidia drivers are demonstrably more stable than Nvidia's own drivers and support a wider variety of kernel configurations.

That said, the Nvidia driver has MUCH better 3D performance, even if they don't support as many X extensions as the open-source drivers do.

Reply Parent Score: 1

archiesteel Member since:

Nvidia and ATI should protect their IPs.

Why? What are they gaining from it? Not a competitive edge, at least not if they both open-source them...

Reply Parent Score: 4

cerbie Member since:

Their competitive edge(s) has little to do with open or closed interfaces. In fact, they would probably gain substantially just based on PR of having open specs/drivers.

Chances are very good ATi and nVidia each infringe on each others' patents and trade secrets, and those of Intel, SiS, and VIA; and they each know it. They will not risk openning their stuff up and getting sued. If that were not a risk, I imagine we'd have open drivers.

However, it would be nice if they created an interface to the hardware that hid that stuff, yet still allowed them to publish enough info for a good open driver to be created.

Reply Parent Score: 1