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

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 Parent Score: 6

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

"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 Parent Score: 1

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

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 Parent Score: 4

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

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 Parent Score: 2