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<-- Back to schedule

so you moved graphics drivers to the kernel.. what next? I can haz ponies?

Time:13:30 - 14:15
Day:Thursday 21 January 2010
Location:Renouf 2 (MFC)
Project: Linux Kernel / / DRI

Leading the push to moving major parts of the graphics driver stack into the kernel as started to pay off, with open source drivers for the 3 major manufacturers all heading kernel wards.

Once these land and we get back to the functionality levels we had before some idiot (i.e. me) decided it was worth moving all the code and rewriting it, for no obvious gain, we can start to provide functional benefits based on these.

This talk will discuss the future desktop benefits that can now come about due to this upheaval

  • Smooth boot functionality
  • Real fast user switching
  • New non-X window based display servers
  • Proper multi-card, multi-head, multi-seat support

There is also a push towards a new userspace driver architecture sitting on top of the kernel modesetting stack. A driver based on Gallium3D architecture, can in theory use the same central driver code for all shader based operations, like accel, 3D accel, video playback accel etc. This will bring about big benefits for the current open source 3D driver developments for newer hardware.

Dave Airlie

Dave Airlie is a Linux kernel/ hacker working for Red Hat based in Brisbane Australia. He has led the charge to move graphics drivers to the kernel and was one of the main architects of the new kernel modesetting drivers. He maintains the kernel direct rendering manager and AGP subsystems, co-maintains Fedora + Red Hat Enterprise Linux, and works mainly on ATI GPUs.