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Old 09-08-05, 06:18 AM   #1
d13f00l
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Default I don't understand Xorg

As I understand xorg, it looks like it's up to driver creators to implement xrender accelerations, either by providing XAA hooks which the render extension uses to do garbage like fill rectangles, or by implementing their own render extension(I think this is what RenderAccel) is?

That seems like an entirely backwords way to do it, and the new EXA extension to replace XAA seems to be a bit of a hack to clean things up. it will DEFINATLY speed things up regarding composite, but it still seems almost like a waste of time. Who knows if nvidia will choose to implement it, or fix their own renderaccel.

It is also my understanding that most modern video cards don't even have 2d acceleration, so driver developers have to add support internally to speed up 2d rendering using their own 3d hardware.

So, I don't get it. OpenGL is a pretty standard API, and hardware manufacturers usually do have their own implementation of OpenGL.

Instead of relying on hardware manufacturers and driver writers to accelerate 2d operations internally, why doesn't X just use opengl? It seems much of the effort people have to put into creating drivers is redundant.

Xorg 7.0 is much MUCH more modular. Are we moving towards that direction? Instead of having many developers write their own extensions and special cases for their drivers, drivers could simply implement opengl and basic 2d operations, and everything else the xserver and it's extensions will do, as they would be relying on the opengl implementation instead of driver hacks to work.

Is it not that simple? I've heard of the XGL EGL and other projects, but they don't seem to be moving fast as not many developers have picked up on them. Is the xorg team themselves going to tackle this issue, or will there be another fork?
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Old 09-08-05, 08:35 AM   #2
etymxris
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Default Re: I don't understand Xorg

http://www.freedesktop.org/~jonsmirl/graphics.html
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Old 09-08-05, 08:38 AM   #3
d4rk74m4
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Default Re: I don't understand Xorg

Manufacturers have to implement drivers because each hardware accelerates graphics options in different ways... The OpenGL API is standard, but the hardware definitely is NOT (in fact, the exact same hardware interfaces are also used to implement Direct3D).

EXA does seem to be a bandaid solution to XAA's problems, and nvidia really have no reason to bother implementing it either (they moved away from XAA ages ago). Xegl seems to be where things are heading (hopefully), and this will run X ontop of a standalone OGL stack.
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Old 09-08-05, 04:13 PM   #4
d13f00l
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Default Re: I don't understand Xorg

Quote:
Originally Posted by d4rk74m4
Manufacturers have to implement drivers because each hardware accelerates graphics options in different ways... The OpenGL API is standard, but the hardware definitely is NOT (in fact, the exact same hardware interfaces are also used to implement Direct3D).
Right. But OpenGL is a standard way of accessing a large array of hardware. There is no way we could have extensions that utilize 2d acceleration without relying on driver implementations for it unless extensions could use opengl directly, as hardware is all different, but OpenGL is a standard way of programming that hardware.


It's like assembly vs C. Is it best to reprogram an application 10 times for indivudual pieces of hardware? It's why higher level languages were invented, and opengl as well. Remember the days before OpenGL/DirectX were around and used in games? Tombraider for dos comes to mind. They had to resort to programming individual renderers for hardware as there was no standard way of accessing them directly. Xorg seems to be a lot like that, except since hardware isnt as documented as it once was, so that responsibility falls onto the hardware manufactuer, and if everything isn't implemented right, things break. I don't think xorg's current model is going to work for the future.
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