Dienstag, 19. August 2008

NVidia Binary Driver 177.67

NVidia driver improvements:
Today NVidia made a new beta-driver available, adressing many of the performance problems I saw when running the XRender pipeline on my GeForce6600 using the proprietary drivers - caused by the quite limited Render accaleration.

Taken form the release notes:
Improved support for RENDER masks, as well as RENDER repeating modes and transformations, for video memory pixmaps.
I haven't tested for now, but this should mean nimbus should run quite well using the proprietary drivers.
They are especially interesting because they don't suffer from some EXA performance problems I am experiencing, I am quite curious how they will perform :)

Another statement taken form the release notes:
Added an 'AllowSHMPixmaps' X configuration option, which can be used to prevent applications from using shared memory pixmaps; the latter may cause some optimizations in the NVIDIA X driver to be disabled.
So it seems time has come for SHMPixmaps to go away. EXA already removed support for SHMPixmaps (which hurts the X11 pipeline quite a bit) and the NVidia driver seems to go the same route.

The interesting thing is that those features were done because of the preassure generated by the community for better performing drivers - at least thats my impression.


After all, I am also curious what will be done about the proprietary AMD driver.
For now it still relies on XAA, and it seems AMD is the only major GPU manufacturer not providing drivers which are able to accalerate XRender properly.
Hopefull when RadeonHD is able to accalerate XRender well on the HD series, the proprietary 2D part will be removed and replaced by RadeonHD. Maybe the propiertary driver could be installed as add-on to RadeonHD, this would be my favourite distribution model.

Challenge:
The result of the challenge is still unknown ... wow I am quite nervous right now.

I hope that the missing Solaris support wasn't too negative as it should be fixable in a couple of days.
I ... well just forgot about it. What a shame, my stuff does for now (at least in VirtualBox) not run on the Unix of the sponsor :-/

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