[Ubuntu-gaming] AMD/ATI vs NVIDIA vs Intel

Danny Piccirillo danny.piccirillo at ubuntu.com
Mon Jun 22 00:04:16 UTC 2009

On Sun, Jun 21, 2009 at 05:12, Joe Sloan <joe at tmsusa.com> wrote:

> That's IMHO a rough oversimplification.

Yes, i meant for it to simplified.

> Nvidia has always had good performing, albeit closed source, linux video
> drivers. I've bought a lot of nvidia cards over the years and I like them
> for gaming. While their drivers are closed source, they have always been
> very quick to update them and they track kernel updates very quickly.

Yep, but as i said, i'm only interested in open drivers.

ATI has historically offered half hearted linux support and closed source
> video drivers for linux, very late, lacking features and performing worse
> than their windoze drivers. Their recent opening up to linux will help
> matters but it is taking time. In the long term they may be a good choice.

This is what i mostly wanted to confirm. Thier history of crappy closed
drivers doesn't matter because i'm only concerned with the state of these
companies right now. So, ATI is completely open now, correct? The problem is
that we haven't caught up yet, but in the long term, this means open
drivers. Can you or somebody else break this down and explain even further?
What else exactly needs to be done for us to see open ATI graphics drivers
and around how long will it most likely take?

Intel graphics have generally not been as high performance as nvidia or ati,
> but they have the benefit of "just working" out of the box, with 3D support
> in the official linux kernel, with open source drivers based on intels
> published video card specs. They do work nicely for desktop effects and some
> gaming. The folks at intel are in the process of revamping the video
> drivers, and ubuntu 9.04 users with intel video are suffering with a half
> baked driver situation - however by 9.10 the intel video situation will be
> greatly improved. Even with 9.04 there are repositories for kernel updates
> and intel video drivers, which dramatically improve the video performance.
> So, who hates intel? They seem to have done fairly well by linux, compared
> to most firms.
> Joe
> Danny Piccirillo wrote:
>> I was wondering about the state of open source graphics drivers today and
>> which companies are the most friendly. My understanding, and i'm hoping that
>> you can either confirm or correct this, is that: NVIDIA has linux drivers,
>> but none of them are open (there is a project for that but nvidia doesn't
>> offer open drivers themselves). Intel has open drivers, but we all hate
>> Intel for one reason <
>> http://pinstack.blogspot.com/2009/01/efi-hidden-threat-to-computing-freedom.html>
>> or another <
>> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Advanced_Configuration_and_Power_Interface#Criticism>.
>>  AMD/ATI have opened everything, but it's taking us some time to catch up
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