radeon and EXA

Michael Olbrich michael-olbrich at web.de
Tue Sep 20 01:12:01 PDT 2005


I've been playing with EXA for the last few days and got some
interesting results.
A few notes on my system:
Thinkpad with Radeon Mobility 7500
Kernel 2.6.13-mm1
debian experimental xorg packages ( + EXA and
radeon_drv from cvs

The basics are pretty much what was reported so far.
Without xcompmgr scrolling is rather unusable.
With xcompmgr scrolling is better (but not as good as XAA) but switching
between desktops (and windows to a lesser extend) is very slow.

What worries me most is the influence of CPU load. I've been running a
compiler in background and the system was more or less unusable.
Switching between windows takes seconds. The clock on my panel (which is
usually the last thing that still works when the load gets to high)
sometimes skips 2-3 second. Even the cursor gets jerky. While that can
be improved with a higher priority for the xserver it is far from the
responsiveness I get with XAA.
(This is all with xcompmgr which is what we want EXA for anyway, right?)

I'm sure improvments will be made. But even with a speedup of an order
of magnitude this sensitivity to the CPU load is not something I would
call aceptable. I have no idea of the design and status of EXA or the
radeon driver so I don't know where the problem lies. I just hope the
people that do are able to fix it.


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