Tag Archives: Driver

Intel Iris Driver Gets ~5% Performance Boost With Direct3D 9 Support On Gallium Nine


The Gallium Nine state tracker providing Direct3D 9 API support for Windows games/applications running on Linux under Wine will now be a little bit faster when using Intel’s new Iris Gallium3D driver.

Simply having access to Gallium Nine is already a big advantage to the new Intel Iris driver where as Intel’s current i965 “classic” Mesa driver isn’t Gallium3D based and thus doesn’t work with the state tracker. While Gallium Nine has been working out well with Iris ever since the state tracker landed NIR support to complement the TGSI IR support but now it’s going to be even faster.

With Intel’s Iris driver being thread-safe, Gallium Nine’s black-listing no longer blocks Iris/Intel from enabling Command-Stream Multi-Threading (CSMT).

According to Andre Heider with the patch, enabling CSMT helps boost the performance by about 5%. This isn’t to be confused with Wine’s CSMT feature but is internal multi-threading for Gallium Nine to help the performance and is already used by the RadeonSI and R600 Gallium3D drivers with this D3D9 state tracker.

Intel’s Iris Gallium3D Driver Working On Better GPU Recovery Handling


While Intel’s Iris Gallium3D driver is not enabled by default and considered still experimental in its support of Broadwell graphics and newer, in all of our tests thus far it’s been working out very well and haven’t encountered any hangs so far in our tested OpenGL workloads. But with no OpenGL driver being immune from potential GPU hangs, a patch series is pending to improve the GPU recovery heuristics.

Longtime open-source Intel Linux graphics developer Chris Wilson sent out a set of three patches this morning for handling of GPU recovery within the Iris driver. In particular, to opt-out of the Linux kernel’s automatic GPU recovery and replay. That approach doesn’t work out well for Iris where its batches are constructed incrementally and thus the replay following a reset would likely cause issues due to missing state. With this patch series, the Iris driver will instead re-construct a fresh context for the next batch when the kernel indicates a GPU hang.

The set of patches improving the GPU recovery behavior for the Iris driver in Mesa can be found here. The Iris driver is set to makes its initial debut in Mesa 19.1 due out around the end of May, still giving plenty of time for Intel graphics driver developers to make more improvements to this next-gen OpenGL driver ahead of its formal debut.

NVIDIA 418.56 Linux Driver Released With GeForce MX230 / MX250 Support


Out for GDC week is the NVIDIA 418.56 Linux driver as the latest stable update to their current long-lived driver release branch.

New hardware support with the NVIDIA 418.56 Linux driver is support for the GeForce MX230 and MX250.

This stable driver update also updates NVIDIA-Settings to disable line wrapping when outputting to a non-terminal in CLI mode, better G-SYNC reporting, a Vulkan application lock-up fix when PRIME is enabled, and the driver now restricts GPU performance counters to system administrators by default.

More details on the NVIDIA 418.56 Linux driver release via devtalk.nvidia.com.

Mesa 18.3.5 Released With Intel/Radeon Vulkan Driver Fixes


The Mesa 18.3 series will soon be winding down with the Mesa 19.0 release now stable since last week, but out today is 18.3.5 as the latest update.

Mesa 18.3.5 is made up of more than two dozen changes that primarily amount to various Intel ANV and Radeon RADV Vulkan driver fixes. Among the changes are RADV updating the list of ETC2 texture compression capable hardware, interpolating less aggressively with the Radeon Vulkan driver, an EGL fix for libdrm-less builds, ANV now advertising eight sub-pixel precision bits, adding the RadeonSI enable NIR DriConf option (as well as enabling it by default for Civilization VI), and a range of other mostly ANV/RADV fixes.

The complete list of Mesa 18.3.5 changes can be found via today’s release announcement.

Intel Sends Out Initial Linux Graphics Driver Support For “Elkhart Lake”


It’s busy as ever for the open-source Intel Linux graphics driver developers bringing up support for upcoming hardware like the recently published driver patches for Comet Lake, continuing to tweak the maturing Icelake “Gen 11” graphics, and also plotting the necessary re-engineering of the driver needed to bring-up Intel’s in-development “Xe” discrete graphics. And Intel developers this evening sent out their initial enablement work for Elkhart Lake.

Elkhart Lake, thankfully, isn’t yet another 14nm CPU revision nor based on the long-standing “Gen 9” graphics but is an Icelake offshoot. Elkhart Lake is the SoC successor to Gemini Lake that will be based on Icelake. Public details on Intel’s Elkart Lake are still light, but the patches out on Wednesday confirm that it’s indeed featuring Gen 11 graphics very similar to what is found in the Icelake processors.

The initial volley of Elkhart Lake Linux support are 9 patches to Intel’s i915 kernel DRM driver. Patches for the rest of the Intel Linux graphics stack (namely their Mesa drivers) have yet to be published but will likely be out in short order.

The code presents just some basic differences between Elkhart Lake “EHL” and Icelake “ICL”. At least for now there are just four PCI IDs for the Elkhart Lake graphics adapters: 0x4500, 0x4571, 0x4551, and 0x4541. These initial kernel bits for the Elkhart Lake SoC will likely end up being introduced into the Linux 5.2 kernel cycle this summer, still giving plenty of time for the released kernel to work its way into distributions before the SoCs debut.