Defying obsolescence, AMD’s 22-year-historical Radeon GPUs obtain unique Linux drivers

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Bottom line: For customers that also rely on the faded ATI R300 graphics processor series, initiating supply has come to the rescue as soon as any other time. This newest replace change into as soon as no longer a easy fix to make, the developer says, and customers can non-public obtain valid of entry to to it this year.

The ATI R300 graphics processor series change into as soon as first introduced in 2002 with the release of the ATI Radeon 9700 Professional. Constructed on the 150nm direction of and that contains an AGP interface – later to be supplanted by PCIe – the playing cards are no longer ready to urge the latest games, however the initiating-supply neighborhood nonetheless helps them permitting them to urge on more moderen Linux distributions.

Particularly, driver updates for ATI’s R300 thru R500 series Radeon GPUs shall be on hand this quarter in Mesa 24.0 and customers can non-public obtain valid of entry to to the replace by the halt of the year. Birth-supply developer Pavel Ondracka explains that the Mesa Gallium3D OpenGL driver replace will focal level on NIR lowering, which is connected to the vertex shaders of the GPUs. “The MR strikes loads of the remainder backend lowering into NIR, particularly ftrunc, fcsel – when correct – and flrp. The backend lowering paths are eradicated, which is a prerequisite for more backend cleanups, he says, pointing to a MR he has that’s ready to place away with backend DCE for vertex shaders.”

There had been tons of updates to the motive force over time by the initiating supply neighborhood in its give a boost to for the pre-R600 series Radeon hardware, with a newest alternate being its adaptation to the unique Mesa interfaces comparable to the transition to NIR intermediate representation. AMD, for its piece, focuses primarily on contemporary technology and future hardware.

It is a ways effective to rob a closer look on the ATI Radeon 9700 Professional as the fact that they’ll nonetheless urge a up to date Linux OS is admirable. The GPU had 110 million transistors, a core clock tempo of 325MHz, 256MB of memory, and 19.8GB/s of memory bandwidth. It change into as soon as the quickest GPU on the time of its initiating and the principle to totally give a boost to DirectX 9.

At the present time its capabilities are largely limited to showing dwelling windows and text but thanks to the initiating-supply neighborhood they are nonetheless practical. It would additionally be eminent that this contemporary replace change into as soon as no longer a easy fix to make, per Ondracka, who says he tried to acquire it correct five instances beforehand but repeatedly failed to make it work reasonably till now.

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