For the first time this year, NVIDIA has officially published new Linux and Solaris display drivers for their GeForce and Quadro products. These drivers, versioned 1.0-8756, bring a couple new features such as GeForce 7600/7900 support as well as a new nvidia-auto-select program. This does mark their first alternative OS official release in nearly four months. No FreeBSD equivalent of these 1.0-8756 drivers are currently available. Phoronix takes a look at these new drivers.
NVIDIA Linux, Solaris 1.0-8756 Drivers
About The Author
Follow me on Twitter @thomholwerda
2006-04-09 1:12 amkaiwai
Agreed; hence the reason I’m looking at investing into a Nvidia video card to replace this existing ATI card; if ATI wish to be anti-social, well, they’ll keep losing customers in either them replacing their cards or simply asking for an Nvidia card when their machine is being configured.
2006-04-09 5:19 ammacisaac
depends on your definition of being ‘social’. remember, with nvidias you have no choice but to run their closed source driver if you want any 3D, and that’s only on linux x86, solaris x86 and freebsd x86. linux ppc, other bsds, etc., you’re stuck with nv. with an ATI, you eventually get the open source driver with the stock xorg (currently up to the 9250 but the r300 series is now in beta/alpha apparently), so not only do you get to keep you system ‘free’, but you don’t have to mess with upgrading outside kernel modules when you do an upgrade.
of course, if none of that matters to you, nvidia is the way to go. but then why are you running a free OS if you don’t care about these things? (and this is coming from someone who used to be a die hard nvidia fan, and who agrees that ATI’s closed source fglrx are awful.)
2006-04-09 5:49 amaquila_deus
A closed-source driver is better than an open-source one that doesnt work.
2006-04-09 5:53 amkaiwai
Well, that brings up the question – why does someone run Linux or FreeBSD (or any other operating system) – some choose it because of philosophical reasons, others run it because they want a UNIX like environment without the massive price tag, some want a UNIX like environment that actually has active development (Linux and *BSD’s) rather than something that has a tonne of dreaming, but no actual development (OpenSolaris/Solaris).
The GLX_Texture_From_Pixmap extension should be in the next release, so we can have compiz at full speed without the need for Mesa. Atleast NVIDIA have gave people native composite now.
NVIDIA will never opensource there driver, so I dont know why people keep banging on about it. Like NVIDIA really want ATI to see there driver code, that point is good enough on it’s own.
/Rant: One more thing, DONT BUY THE LATEST NVIDIA CARD UNTIL YOU KNOW IT’S SUPPORTED. It really annoys me when people think there card works “out of the box” for Linux, dont say it on the box./Rant
2006-04-08 5:21 pmbinarycrusader
The GLX_Texture_From_Pixmap extension should be in the next release, so we can have compiz at full speed without the need for Mesa.
I wouldn’t count on it. As far as I’ve heard, that extension hasn’t been finalized yet. If it has, well then, jolly good!
2006-04-08 5:26 pmSlackerJack
Well the next release should be in 3-4 months, so that should be time enough.
Interesting that Solaris drivers were released, along with the Linux ones. Good for Solaris users, Sun must have been doing -something- right this time.
2006-04-08 6:52 pmpcbsdusr
2006-04-09 1:04 amjmcpAtSun
Sun and nVidia have a commercial arrangement regarding
provision of frame buffer hardware. That pays dividends
for Sun in two ways: (1) Sun doesn’t have to spend money
on creating their own fb hardware and drivers, and (2)
the options for Sun customers are greatly increased.
2006-04-09 4:55 amkaiwai
Sun and nVidia have a commercial arrangement regarding provision of frame buffer hardware. That pays dividends for Sun in two ways: (1) Sun doesn’t have to spend money on creating their own fb hardware and drivers, and (2) the options for Sun customers are greatly increased.
OPTIONS!? What options?! the fact that when I mention ATI drivers support on the Solarisx86 yahoo mailing, I’m abused to buggery and told I should spend ANOTHER $400 on purchasing an Nvidia card?
Please, this is yet another pathetic attempt for SUN to justify its existance at consuming oxygen – SUN has done ZIP, and as shown by the lack of uptake of Solaris x86 as as server OR a workstation operating system, and the complete and utter lack of commercial softwrae for the workstation, it screams volumes about the incompetancy of Scott McNealy (the perpetual whiner of Silicon Valley) and his Pony Tail co-hort who seems to be out of touch with reality – People purchase hardware and operating systems to run software; something which SUN seems to have forgotten.
Edited 2006-04-09 04:57
2006-04-09 1:14 amkaiwai
You mean SUN giving Nvidia money <laughs> please, SUN is full of cheapskates who expect everyone else to carry their operating system and the hardware support.
2006-04-08 8:02 pmczubin
There isn’t that much difference between solaris and linux for nvidia, something about a unified code architecture.
So making the driver for linux is doing 90% for solaris as well.
Anyways it’s how the nvidia guy explained it.
2006-04-09 7:56 amjamesd
It turns out that Solaris is the easier platform to support. Solaris has a stable ABI something that Linus and the rest of the Linux kernel developers don’t support, so the 3rd party hardware vendors are stuck recompiling and/or patching to make there drivers work every 2 or 3 versions. With Solaris they just have to focus on features not implementation details of each new kernel change.
The unstable ABI may be Linux’s achilles heel that keeps it off the desktop of home users in the near term.
2006-04-09 5:37 pmstephanem
> The unstable ABI may be Linux’s achilles heel that
> keeps it off the desktop of home users in the near
Which Sun should try to immediately capitalize on but they can’t seem to shake off the Solaris is for servers mentality.
Sun has the $$$ to pay off hardware guys to support Solaris but instead they go waste it on stupid aquisitions like Aduva. Godamn it Sun, pay ATI $1million and get the ATI drivers so that my Ferrari 4K will atleast run OpenGL. Pay id another million to port Doom3 to Solaris so that I can make use of those ATI OpenGL drivers
2006-04-09 1:09 amSeeMyNuts
Sun’s Opteron workstations use Quadro cards.
What is the XVR-2500? Sun’s website is a bit short on information, at least there isn’t an entry on their graphics cards page.
2006-04-09 4:56 amkaiwai
the XVR-2500 is an over priced, gloriried ATI graphics card – the only thing they have going for it is, “ooh, you can purchase the same thing in 5 years time!” – yeah, like an individual would want to purchase the same graphics card from 5 years ago, and then seeing that as an advantage over purchasing a system from Dell.
2006-04-09 11:34 pm_james
The XVR-2500 is the next card used in their latest SPARC workstations. Like the XVR-600 and XVR1200, it’s based on a 3DLabs processor, I think the Wildcat Realizm 500. There’s no information on it in the graphics card section on their web site, but I think I found some info in some pdf’s that come up in a Google search.
In response to someone else’s post, the XVR-100 is based on an ATI Radion 7000, and it is hobbled by bad drivers (I have one in my Sun Blade). I’d imagine the XVR-2500 will be pretty good, though.
“Improved power management support with Linux >= 2.6.14 and added support for suspend-to-disk.”
Finally!!!! I’ll be able to suspend my laptop with 3D accel!!!
“Enabled hardware acceleration of the Render X extension by default.”
Does that mean it’s finally stable? w00t
The new level of support for GLX and Composite working nicely in parallel is a much welcomed improvement over the last Composite-, Render- and GLX-offerings in the nvidia-driver. It opens the door for new visual tricks yet a bit more. Even without Xgl/compiz/AIGLX. I’ve started to toy around with that a bit myself… http://macslow.thepimp.net/?p=40
It’s still a bit awkward to work with it, but the result is worth the effort imo.
while i appreciate that ATI do allow open-source drivers on older hardware it really does nothing for me as i like bleeding-edge hardware.
so nVidia it is. *happy 7900GT owner*
Q: has this release done anything to improve the whole AIGLX/XGL situation?
Driver availability for non-mainstream operating systems (and Linux *is* mainstream these days) is what hooked me to nVidia. I have a 6800 that runs like a dream on FreeBSD, compatible with BSD’s Linux emulation even. They would surely be better off just releasing the source code for the drivers and let the community do the rest of the work, but the way it is is surely better than their competition, that releases only lousy drivers for Linux.