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NVIDIA getting geared up to support hardware accelerated XWayland

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Looks like 2021 really could properly be the year of Wayland on the Linux desktop. For plenty it already is but NVIDIA have been a sore spot and it looks like they're moving forward now too.

NVIDIA's Erik Kurzinger has submitted a Merge Request to the xserver GitLab titled "Xwayland: Support hardware accelerated rendering with the proprietary NVIDIA driver", with the two patches included "intended to accompany upcoming support in the proprietary NVIDIA driver for hardware accelerated GL and Vulkan rendering with Xwayland". Kurzinger continues to mention that once a driver is out with the needed hooks, this code should "just start working".

The patches are being sent out to be considered, so that they can get some feedback and see if there's any substantial concerns about their approach to it.

As for the performance of it? They expect it to be "on-par with native X11 based on the benchmarking I've done", although there's "an annoying extra copy required for presentation of windowed applications, but the impact doesn't appear to be significant" and you shouldn't see it for full-screen applications as long as the compositor works with the zwp_linux_dmabuf_v1 interface.

Why is all this important? With Wayland coming along to replace X11 as a big shakeup for Linux as a whole, you need XWayland to provide that backwards compatibility to enable existing applications and games to continue working well into the future.

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
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49 comments
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Alm888 8 Jan
Quoting: HoriI'm not an AMD user, but... why would <you stop> playing proprietary games just because you support open drivers?

Sure I'll always be happy when I see open source games, that is great, but IMO it is not a requirement!
Maybe it is because you are not an AMD user?
Those using nVidia… are just playing games.
Those using AMD feel the need to preach everyone on how closed source is bad and not the Linux Way, so using closed source proprietary "blobs" is a big NO-NO! Oh, and "NVIDIA, F*CK YOU!" Because in their eyes nVidia is EVIL and is actively undermining the Linux ecosystem by… doing what it is supposed to do: providing software support for their products.

Because, remember, closed-source proprietary drivers are EVIL!

I am personally all for open platform ideology. An ecosystem providing possibilities for everyone. If a company decides to sell their proprietary software on Linux -- fine by me! I will not pull everyone's nails with a pliers demanding access to source code.

But some AMD "non-fanboys" will not rest in piece until nVidia opens its drivers (and, preferably, abandons all of its technology, such as CUDA, NVAPI, GSync etc.) because it is not the Linux Way. Also, said "non-fanboys" are quite happy using their AMD GPUs with closed-source firmware in their open drivers. Ask them, they will tell you "that's different" (talk about "GPL Condoms").

And they will find a way to derail every positive nVidia news thread into a hatred-avalanche by posting how they have stopped using nVidia products on principle because "NVIDIA, F*CK YOU!".
Quoting: HoriFor me too but honestly it's not there yet IMO... AMD's still at 1st gen RT and we know how useless Nvidia's 1st gen RT was. Same goes to whatever AMD calls their DLSS equivalent - which IMO is the biggest advantage Nvidia has.
My NVIDIA GPU is from like 2014.
This in itself should tell you if I care about RT and 5% fps difference between NVIDIA and equivalent AMD card in general :D


Last edited by sbolokanov on 8 January 2021 at 1:19 pm UTC
BielFPs 8 Jan
Quoting: Alm888Personal insults already?
Not an insult, I was talking about those users defending Nvidia even when it's the company the cause of those said problems.

But every time I see an argument about "Wayland sucks because they didn't choose the "superior Nvidia EGLStreams"" I get the same energy as "Linux sucks because it won't run my [Windows only trending game]" which the point is, they're blaming the wrong subject for the problem in this case

Wayland (compositors) are far from perfect and it have it's whole share of problems, but Nvidia non standard proprietary drivers is not one of them.

Quoting: Alm888Why there are a lot of ATi users in the nVidia thread? Don't you have anything better to do than spew your hatred towards nVidia?

Personally, I'm only comment because of the Wayland subject, which I'm really happy to see "some progress" from nvidia (even if I don't use it anymore) because it has a positive impact in the wayland adoption as default

You won't see me comment any of those news here about "Nvidia new driver releases" for example.

Quoting: Alm888must manually compile the latest Mesa drivers from Git applying patches and using new "sometimes working sometimes crashing on start" ACO shader compiler!
Fortunately I'm yet to experience a problem with Mesa + ACO in my setup, I always only needed Pacman -Syu (and ppa before that) and never had to compile a single driver in my life (I think I don't even know how to do it )

In fact, most of the people I see talking about problems with linux gaming are always using "Nvidia + KDE" combo

Quoting: Alm888How dare they use cards that just work

If you're using Nvidia drivers + wayland without any problems, then those drivers are in a better state than I thought

Quoting: Alm888even back when those cards outright refused to work on Linux (say "Hello!" to fglrx).

Agreed. AMD before Lisa Su was in a sorrow state, and look how things improved with Linux after they release the open source drivers


Last edited by BielFPs on 8 January 2021 at 4:13 pm UTC
omer666 8 Jan
Quoting: Alm888
Quoting: HoriI'm not an AMD user, but... why would <you stop> playing proprietary games just because you support open drivers?

Sure I'll always be happy when I see open source games, that is great, but IMO it is not a requirement!
Maybe it is because you are not an AMD user?
Those using nVidia… are just playing games.
Those using AMD feel the need to preach everyone on how closed source is bad and not the Linux Way, so using closed source proprietary "blobs" is a big NO-NO! Oh, and "NVIDIA, F*CK YOU!" Because in their eyes nVidia is EVIL and is actively undermining the Linux ecosystem by… doing what it is supposed to do: providing software support for their products.

Because, remember, closed-source proprietary drivers are EVIL!

I am personally all for open platform ideology. An ecosystem providing possibilities for everyone. If a company decides to sell their proprietary software on Linux -- fine by me! I will not pull everyone's nails with a pliers demanding access to source code.
I think you would live a better life if you stopped doing archetypes.

For most users the problem is more technical than ideological, drivers on Linux are meant to be provided in a certain way and to interface with the system as it was designed, and it is not possible with current Nvidia drivers.

As to the parallel with playing proprietary games on an open system, it is as idiotic as asking why you open copyrighted documents with LibreOffice.


Last edited by omer666 on 8 January 2021 at 5:17 pm UTC
Alm888 8 Jan
Quoting: BielFPs…it's the company the cause of those said problems.
Selling hardware to Linux users is "causing problems" now?
It is an open market and a company can choose the way it wants to sell and support its products. Don't agree with said company? Do not buy its products. Plain and simple. But calling people who are of different opinion and think nVidia's level (or way) of support is good enough "fanboys" is just a little overstepping the red line.
Quoting: BielFPsBut every time I see an argument about "Wayland sucks because they didn't choose the "superior Nvidia EGLStreams""
Care to provide a single instance of someone stating "EGLStreams is superior"? I'm having a hard time recollecting the instance I saw this. And I myself have not ever said such a thing because I have no competence in the field to make such statements.
AMD "non-fanboys", on the other hand, like to say that it is "general consensus" to use GBM (or whatewer it is called) and nVidia is the sole black sheep daring reject the norm.
Quoting: BielFPsWayland (compositors) are far from perfect and it have it's whole share of problems, but Nvidia non standard proprietary drivers is not one of them.
Strange, I thought the EGL_KHR_stream is a standard approved by the Khronos Board of Promoters. Apparently, Khronos Group mean nothing when it comes to standards on Linux.
Quoting: BielFPsPersonally, I'm only comment because of the Wayland subject, which I'm really happy to see "some progress" from nvidia (even if I don't use it anymore) because it has a positive impact in the wayland adoption as default
Yeah, in an insulting way. Some people just have to put salt even in the good news. :(
Quoting: BielFPsIf you're using Nvidia drivers + wayland without any problems, then those drivers are in a better state than I thought
I don't. I see no point (and just like XFCE better). All the games are for X11, all my apps are running fine with X11 and, as I've previously said, I'm no developer, so technical side of things is completely hidden from me. Wayland without the XWayland is useless for me, and the last I've read, the XWayland is still not ready for "production", even on Gnome+AMD setup.
So, I take the "If it ain't broken, don't fix it" approach.
Quoting: omer666…drivers on Linux are meant to be provided in a certain way…
Meant by whom? Is it not legal to provide drivers in a binary form? What about other drivers (Broadcom wireless etc.)? How about other parts, like BIOS (UEFI) firmware? Or, well, AMD firmware? Are those meant to be provided in a binary form?
Please, tell me you are using Libreboot firmware with gNewSense GNU/Linux OS. But, I bet you are not (your profile states Fedora).
Quoting: omer666For most users the problem is more technical than ideological…
Yet, some seem to be inclined bashing nVidia whenever they can, even in good news, because, nVidia does things the "wrong way", not the way things are meant to be done. Sure. No ideology here whatsoever.
Quoting: omer666I think you would live a better life if you stopped doing archetypes.
Quoting: omer666…idiotic…
I seriously think you shall calm down or, better yet, go to bed. Because direct insults are not healthy and right now you are clearly not capable of restraining yourself from them.
omer666 8 Jan
Quoting: Alm888Meant by whom? Is it not legal to provide drivers in a binary form? What about other drivers (Broadcom wireless etc.)? How about other parts, like BIOS (UEFI) firmware? Or, well, AMD firmware? Are those meant to be provided in a binary form?
Please, tell me you are using Libreboot firmware with gNewSense GNU/Linux OS. But, I bet you are not (your profile states Fedora).
The binary argument is none of my concerns in this case, and that's what you seem to fail to understand. Linux kernel does officially come with binary software and I don't see any problem doing so, that's why I'm running Fedora.
And if you had bothered reading what I'm actually writing (which I doubt you did, cf. later in this very post), you would know that I am not discussing legality.
What I am arguing in favour of is developing drivers at least in cooperation with the kernel team, if not directly inside Mesa, which would avoid multiple technical problems including incompatibilities and bugs, some of which we had to bear with for a year and a half without Nvidia even taking notice. I'm not saying they are incompetent, I'm not saying it is the binary form which is "evil", I'm saying that as a (mostly) loyal Nvidia customer since GeForce 2, I'm getting bored with it all.

Quoting: Alm888
Quoting: omer666For most users the problem is more technical than ideological…
Yet, some seem to be inclined bashing nVidia whenever they can, even in good news, because, nVidia does things the "wrong way", not the way things are meant to be done. Sure. No ideology here whatsoever.

So you mean there is no better technical way to do software, there's only ideology at hand?

Quoting: Alm888
Quoting: omer666I think you would live a better life if you stopped doing archetypes.
Quoting: omer666…idiotic…
I seriously think you shall calm down or, better yet, go to bed. Because direct insults are not healthy and right now you are clearly not capable of restraining yourself from them.
I found your remark very stupid, that doesn't mean I'm insulting your very person.
You keep putting things in such a way that prevents you from reading the actual conversation.
All your replies to my post are completely far-fetched, if it's not too insulting to your taste.
You pit things as Fanatic Bearded Open-Source Gurus vs the World.
Well what I'm desperately trying to tell you, is that things are not this way for everyone in this conversation.
And I don't know where you live, but 6 PM is a bit early for bed.

Oh, and...
Quoting: Alm888EVIL!
HAIL SATAN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
link


Last edited by omer666 on 8 January 2021 at 11:45 pm UTC
BielFPs 8 Jan
Quoting: Alm888Selling hardware to Linux users is "causing problems" now?
No, but not following the standard of the linux support is

Quoting: Alm888It is an open market and a company can choose the way it wants to sell and support its products. Don't agree with said company?
True, they don't have any obligation to follow an standard to support Linux, but once they decide to diverge from it, it becomes their responsibility only to support the said system.

Quoting: Alm888Do not buy its products. Plain and simple.
I don't buy anymore (my last nvidia board was from my windows days )

Quoting: Alm888But calling people who are of different opinion and think nVidia's level (or way) of support is good enough "fanboys" is just a little overstepping the red line.
I call "fanboys" those who use Nvidia on linux and blame every other factor when their cards don't work well because of an update. If you're not one of those, then I wasn't talk about you.

Quoting: Alm888Care to provide a single instance of someone stating "EGLStreams is superior"? I'm having a hard time recollecting the instance I saw this. And I myself have not ever said such a thing because I have no competence in the field to make such statements.
I was using a fallacy, but yes I saw (more than once) people saying it was wayland developers fault to not using EGLStreams and they (and every other vendor) should change it to start using.

I really wish I had some of those post right now to link here, but you'll find someday in a discussion about Wayland in foruns like Reddit or Phoronix

Quoting: Alm888AMD "non-fanboys", on the other hand, like to say that it is "general consensus" to use GBM (or whatewer it is called) and nVidia is the sole black sheep daring reject the norm.

(Please some reader correct me here If I'm saying anything wrong)
The "general consensus" as you said was defined back when X.org developers started to planing wayland, and they call every big vendor at time (including Nvidia) to decide which technology they would use. They decide to use GBM in the end and everyone accepted, except Nvidia who wanted everyone else to use their solution, and Canonical, who decide to not support Wayland at all and launch Mir (which didn't worked, and now Mir is another Wayland compositor).

And no, I'm not an AMD fanboy. I even recognize that Nvidia is superior in hardware (and price) and I would probably get one again if wasn't for their actual business practices.


Quoting: Alm888Yeah, in an insulting way.
I was only answering @Shmerl (who have an more optimistic view about it than I) and you take it personal. I'm truly sorry if you felt offended by my comment, I wasn't my intention, and know that if you're not in the case I said before, then be sure I wasn't talk about you.

Quoting: Alm888Some people just have to put salt even in the good news.
Good news indeed, it's a sign that Nvidia is feeling obligated to not neglect Wayland anymore, and Geforce users will benefit the most of it.

I'm just tired to see people spreading misinformation about Linux topics (which happens more than you think).

It's always about "If the software doesn't work with Windows, then it's the software's fault"

But when it's on Linux is "If the software doesn't work with Linux, then it's Linux fault"

And this makes me sad because it has a indirect negative impact for us.

In this case, Wayland developers are the victim because Nvidia has too much influence, and they only does this because Linux is their second class users.

If they tried to go against any of the Microsoft driver standards on Windows, not only their drivers wouldn't work at all, but Nvidia would have bankrupt by now.


Last edited by BielFPs on 8 January 2021 at 10:50 pm UTC
Even thought many pro linux users hate nvidia's closed source drivers, this is kind of whats needed for wayland to succeed because like it or not, Nvidia is the most popular GPU today. They set the stage, not AMD. Unfortunately.
Alm888 9 Jan
Quoting: BielFPs…not following the standard of the linux support is…
I believe nVidia follows the standards, both Linux and Khronos Group.

Quoting: BielFPsI call "fanboys" those who use Nvidia on linux and blame every other factor when their cards don't work well because of an update. If you're not one of those, then I wasn't talk about you.
Ideally, "their cards" shall not stop to "work well because of an update" because that, quite frankly, is against Linux rules. Or, more specifically, against Linus Torvalds' rules as he has always said "Do Not Break ABI". Sadly, other (both X.Org and Linux) developers are not so strict and situations when a GPU has stopped working due to kernel/xorg update breaking API (with subsequent recompilation failure) are not that rare.


Quoting: BielFPs(Please some reader correct me here If I'm saying anything wrong)
The "general consensus" as you said was defined back when X.org developers started to planing wayland, and they call every big vendor at time (including Nvidia) to decide which technology they would use. They decide to use GBM in the end and everyone accepted, except Nvidia who wanted everyone else to use their solution, and Canonical, who decide to not support Wayland at all and launch Mir (which didn't worked, and now Mir is another Wayland compositor).
Can not delve into this because I was not paying attention to these matters besides noticing (and probably commenting on) Canonical's NIH syndrome with Mir. But, honestly, it is hard to blame nVidia for not following suit when even major "Linux developers" (such as "Canonical" and "Red Hat") can not come to a consensus and are pushing Linux ecosystem into two mutually exclusive ways.


Quoting: BielFPsI even recognize that Nvidia is superior in hardware (and price) and I would probably get one again if wasn't for their actual business practices.
Granted, nVidia often uses shady methods of promotion and has some… strange obsession with ray-tracing pushing it down everyone's throat. But if we look into history, we will see that all GPU purveyors have used such tactics.
In Windows world custom-tailored drivers intentionally straying from standards in order to boost that one particular overhyped game are the norm (I'm talking Quake, for example) and even ATi having separate "minigl drivers" (stripped down OpenGL subset just for Quake) is a part of gaming history. And it continues right now, with both AMD and nVidia competing to beat each other at providing top "Cyborg & Punk 2077" support (with who knows how many hacks and coding errors and standard violations on CDPR's part).
Quoting: BielFPsI'm just tired to see people spreading misinformation about Linux topics (which happens more than you think).

It's always about "If the software doesn't work with Windows, then it's the software's fault"

But when it's on Linux is "If the software doesn't work with Linux, then it's Linux fault"

And this makes me sad because it has a indirect negative impact for us.
Understandable.
But it is to be expected, as all those "people spreading misinformation" just want a Windows without a Windows logo and expect everything to work "just the same, but better". Yet, who are we to blame them? Because, for better or worse, bundling all the drivers with the kernel and active dissuasion form downloading them from side sources is considered to be the norm.
And what other reaction we are expecting from a Windows user trying out Linux and suddenly finding out her/his quite expensive hardware not working due to:
a) nVidia having required drivers but they are either not included in the LTS distro (Debian/ LTS Ubuntu, Mint etc.), or are not compatible with the current "bleeding edge" kernel/Xserver (Arch, Manjaro, Fedora to sime extent);
b) AMD not being prepared for its own GPU launch and not providing its drivers on day-1, or preliminary support being in the bleeding-edge Git version of Mesa requiring the latest RC of the Linux kernel and obviously not included in any distro yet (hello, "AMD RX 5700")?
Quoting: BielFPsIf they tried to go against any of the Microsoft driver standards on Windows, not only their drivers wouldn't work at all, but Nvidia would have bankrupt by now.
If they tried to "go against any of the Microsoft driver standards", their drivers simply would not work. Just as it is on Linux.
But if you are referring not to technical, but to "legal"/"business"/"corporate shenanigans" side of things, then no, nVidia is regularly "going against Microsoft" and provides beta/enthusiast drivers without WHQL support and has even provided drivers without a certified signature in the past ("Windows XP" would freak out but ask user whether he/she really wants to install unsigned 3rd-party drivers, don't know how it is now). We are talking drivers, of course. DirectX support was never a part of AMD/nVidia's obligation, AFAIK.
But yes, I agree, it is not healthy for your business if your hardware is not working on a buyer's PC at the get-go. Both AMD and nVidia know this and provide beta/non-certified drivers on CD's in the boxes with their cards at day-1 (at least for Windows).
x_wing 9 Jan
Quoting: Alm888
Quoting: BielFPs…not following the standard of the linux support is…
I believe nVidia follows the standards, both Linux and Khronos Group.

There are many examples of games that doesn't work on Mesa because they seem to be only tested with Nvidia drivers and they don't follow the standard. You can believe what you want, but the facts are still there.

Quoting: Alm888Ideally, "their cards" shall not stop to "work well because of an update" because that, quite frankly, is against Linux rules. Or, more specifically, against Linus Torvalds' rules as he has always said "Do Not Break ABI". Sadly, other (both X.Org and Linux) developers are not so strict and situations when a GPU has stopped working due to kernel/xorg update breaking API (with subsequent recompilation failure) are not that rare.

I believe that you misunderstood what Linus said. First of all, the exact quote is "We do not break user-space", which means that a new kernel version should not break a program that was working fine with a previous version. As in this case we're discussing about a kernel driver then this phrase doesn't apply.
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