Some interesting open source GPU driver news to share today, as Collabora continue working on their open source Panfrost driver to cover newer generations of Mali ARM GPUs.
Writing on the Collabora blog, Alyssa Rosenzweig, Software Engineer at Collabora, did a bit of a deeper dive into what's been happening. Now, they're in a position to get the first 3D renders on Bifrost, including basic texture support. This is following after getting the Panfrost driver to support OpenGL ES (GLES) 3.0 on the earlier Midgard series.
Rosenzweig mentioned in her post that the newer Bifrost GPU architecture "turns Midgard on its head, ideally bringing performance improvements but rather complicating the driver". While support for it is still in the early stages, it's progressing forward quickly and the compiler code needed for the basic 3D rendering is already up-streamed to Mesa with more on the way.
As the Panfrost driver continues to mature, it makes Mali ARM GPUs much more useful for all sorts on Linux, including for some gaming (where the games work on Arm anyway…) as they improve their OpenGL (and eventually Vulkan) support. These GPUs are found in a lot of devices too.
See the full blog post here.