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Valve really do seem to be the champions of Linux right now. Even if you don't like Steam you cannot deny just how much they have done for our ecosystem already. The latest effort is to improve Mesa.

LunarGLunarG received funding from Valve to explore the possibility of game performance improvements using the LunarGLASS technology in the Mesa driver, specifically the potential for FPS improvements through shader runtime improvements. LunarGLASS includes the glslang frontend and the LLVM compiler component as well additional modifications to make LLVM suitable for shader compilation.

The main component developed for this effort was a translator from LunarGLASS Bottom IR to Mesa GLSL IR. This allows all Mesa backends which consume Mesa GLSL IR to potentially benefit from this technology, including i965.


You can see a .pdf full of slides with more information on it here.

They have funded LunarG to conduct test and write code for "Glassy Mesa" to improve the Mesa open source graphics project.

They mentioned tests on Left 4 Dead 2 that showed a 15%-22% improvement which for graphics performance is in my eyes a massive change and I really hope something comes out of this. Although this is only from a couple of random samples taken, so it may not indicate such a good improvement overall.

The crazy thing is this took only 10 weeks to achieve by one person. Imagine if this work kept up and all the distributions picked it up. We could really get ahead of other operating systems graphical performance, and I am sure we can all agree that would be great.

See the full post on it here. For the code geeks amongst us it's all available to check out on github.

The slides do note there is much work to be done, so it's probably still some ways away from being include into Mesa itself for distributions to pick up.

We have contacted LunarG to keep us updated on this. Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
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berarma 10 Jun, 2014
Quoting: mirvI'm still brushing up on everything Mesa (only got into properly once GL 3.3 was fully supported), but it seems this is an attempted replacement for current parsers & Mesa shader stack. Well, LunarGLASS has been around a little bit, but for Valve to fund them over "generic" Mesa, I do wonder at something else.
They're doing this for business motivations, and I do recall some mentions from the Steam Dev Days about wanting to provide shaders without full sources. That's not a part of the OpenGL spec, so perhaps this is an attempt to side-step the issue. Or that could just be me and a tin foil hat.

If that's true then shame on Valve. Of all the things they could help improve, closing the shaders source code is the most shameful one. I'm sure they're doing this for their profit, but I hoped it was something that would benefit us all.

We should be concerned that Valve's getting a lot of praise lately while other companies that have been constantly pushing GNU/Linux forward aren't recognized enough (someone rightly mentioned RedHat but not the only one).
mirv 10 Jun, 2014
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Quoting: berarma
Quoting: mirvI'm still brushing up on everything Mesa (only got into properly once GL 3.3 was fully supported), but it seems this is an attempted replacement for current parsers & Mesa shader stack. Well, LunarGLASS has been around a little bit, but for Valve to fund them over "generic" Mesa, I do wonder at something else.
They're doing this for business motivations, and I do recall some mentions from the Steam Dev Days about wanting to provide shaders without full sources. That's not a part of the OpenGL spec, so perhaps this is an attempt to side-step the issue. Or that could just be me and a tin foil hat.
If that's true then shame on Valve. Of all the things they could help improve, closing the shaders source code is the most shameful one. I'm sure they're doing this for their profit, but I hoped it was something that would benefit us all.

We should be concerned that Valve's getting a lot of praise lately while other companies that have been constantly pushing GNU/Linux forward aren't recognized enough (someone rightly mentioned RedHat but not the only one).

I don't know about shameful of Valve - they're trying to provide something that "developers" (read: paranoid corporate folk) are asking for. For whatever reason, it's those people that don't want to have their shader source code exposed.
One can argue that a (decent) IR could possibly reduce shader compile time, but I don't see that - the expensive steps are likely the final optimisation passes anyway. Besides, there are ways to hide the shader compile times, or make them not affect actual gameplay.

And agreed, Valve are getting a lot of praise, but they're not the only ones doing stuff. A lot of work was happening with Mesa long before Valve even thought of bringing Steam to Linux. Valve have a much easier time with marketing though, so they hit the news a bit more, but it's good to remember from time to time that they're not going to be afraid to go proprietary routes if they think it'll serve their business purposes.
JustDave 10 Jun, 2014
Not noticed any problems myself, running fast...
GFX - HD7750
CPU - AMD FX 4-Core
Memory - 8GB DDR3
Anonymous 11 Jun, 2014
Quoting: SaleckThey could rename it Black Mesa while they're at it :)
I imagine Gabe sitting and reading GMan and drinking Wine and summoning vortiguants through XEN to turn our V4L to L4D and to make our Mesa black
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