[Nouveau] Gallium driver and compatibility issues

Pekka Paalanen pq at iki.fi
Fri Mar 12 12:25:41 PST 2010

On Fri, 12 Mar 2010 14:51:34 +0100
Uwe Bugla <uwe.bugla at gmx.de> wrote:

> "Note, that the Nvidia proprietary driver....."
> Lapse No. 3:
> Misleading usage of expressions.
> Everybody talking about the "Nvidia proprietary driver" in the
> graphic card context of Nvidia cards normallly means the blob
> driver shipped by Nvidia (closed source driver!) which does not
> have any problems with stuff like Compiz or other 3D
> applications. I do not like blob drivers for a whole bunch of
> reasons. As you are definitely using the wrong expression it
> remains your personal secret what you are trying to express or
> say.

One of the most common reasons for problems with Nouveau are
the remnants of the proprietary driver. Since you did not
provide kernel log, X log, nor glxinfo output, I of course
assumed the most probable case. A stale libglx from the blob
kills OpenGL, for instance.

Furthermore, you cannot have the Nvidia proprietary 3D
driver running by default, and then use the Nouveau 3D driver
on selected apps. If you use *any* part of Nouveau, you cannot
have *any* part of the proprietary driver, and vice versa.
They cannot live together at all.

I'm sorry I guessed your problem wrong. There was no real
information to begin the diagnosis with.

> "Problems are expected on the OpenGL front....."
> Lapse No. 4:
> I did not mention nearly all driver parts of the Gallium drivers
> carrying the "GL" in their names just by chance. I reflect while
> I am typing messages. I explicitly mentioned that the versions of
> the driver parts carrying the "GL" in their names are NOT
> responsible for the breakage that I reported.
> Thus it still remains your personal secret what you mean by
> "OpenGL front".

Actually, they are. Mesa libGL will try to load nouveau_dri.so
to provide hardware accelerated 3D rendering. At this time
OpenGL (via Mesa) is the only real user of nouveau_dri.so.
nouveau_dri.so may be loaded by the X server (AIGLX) or
the application (direct rendering) when they load libGL.

In short, having nouveau_dri.so will break OpenGL and perhaps
kill the X server in the AIGLX case.

> Lapse No. 6:
> Instead of repeating the core message of my request for 4 times
> in this mail (how insane!) I propose to change this page
> http://nouveau.freedesktop.org/wiki/GalliumHowto
> in the following way:
> 1. Wipe off the following stupid idiotic crap:
> "Warning : Nouveau's developers don't want people to build
> gallium drivers now, and do not support it at all. They also
> don't want bug reports on gallium ATM. This is code in rapid
> development. Bug reports for this are useless, as it's known to
> be broken."

That is rude on purpose. It is supposed to be crystal clear
to everyone, that this is not yet for end users, but apparently
it is not that clear. The time for end users will come, later.
At that time the page will be rewritten to be polite. Right now
it is just a cheatsheet for new developers.

> And once again: The error is not hidden in some library
> file containing the "GL" in its name, and the versioning of those
> GL files is also NOT the problem.
> It's the sources of the nouveau_dri.so file that do contain the
> bug.

True. nouveau_dri.so misses complete features and contains bugs.

I read your two first posts as nothing more than an elaborate
"Fix everything, please". That really is what people are actually
doing on their free time. Trying to kick their butt can only make
them ignorant or angry.

Pekka Paalanen

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