Tuesday, 26 August 2008

ATI (AMD) Catalyst 8.8 - Linux version

Dear ATI Radeon owners (like myself) and (exclusive and) Linux users, if you haven't heard yet, the new ATI Catalyst 8.8 is out.
This is actually good news, I've been using it for a few days now, and, now that's in the Arch repository, installed the "official" version. This one fixed even more stuff (probably compiled by someone with more skill in CFLAGS than me, lol), and actually works better than the 8.7 version. However, this is unfortunately far from a perfectly working driver, but the sheer rate at which the driver is developed (together with the bugfixes and new features) since AMD bought ATI is, to be honest, if not amazing, at least hopegiving. Perhaps there's still future for ATI on Linux.

So, to sum up the stuff, here's what I've noticed:

the good stuff:
  • a slight performance increase (glxgears on my Mobility Radeon 9700 now show an average of 2900 FPS, while 8.7 was at about 2600)
  • some stability fixes (I can finally restart X without the complete system getting phrozen
  • scrolling in Firefox under Compiz still requires a Strength check, but now the DC is lower :D (essentially, it's a bit more responsive, but still far from working perfectly)
  • playing movies in VLC with the OpenGL or XVideo output has less (almost none) flickering and blinking

...and the bad stuff:
  • playing movies with the OpenGL or XVideo output still has some issues when playing fullscreen
  • WINE still has that goddamn Checkerboard of Doom. Apparently there's a workaround somewhere, but I either simply lack the skill to make it work, or I use the wrong distro for that (the one workaround I found on the Internet was by dscharrer on Phoronix forums, but that's for Gentoo).
...that's as much as I've figured from a few days of use, and trying the stuff I need.
Personally, the Checkerboard of Doom is something that bugs me the most. I'd rather have totaly useless Windows with the new Catalyst than have that bloody display corruption in WINE.
If there's a good soul reading this and aware of ANY workaround, please do let me know.

That's that from me... cheerz =]

No comments: