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The Mesa GLSL shader cache is now enabled by default

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I'm sure plenty of you will be happy with this, as Mesa now has the shader cache enabled by default in Mesa-git to allow for wider testing. It may be turned off for Mesa 17.1, if wider testing shows issues with it.

For those that don't quite understand, Mesa is the open source driver for Intel, AMD and NVIDIA graphics cards.

You might notice with Mesa that some games can take a long time to load, longer than they should take. Some games also might stutter when new areas are loaded, a shader cache should help with both.

In this commit, Timothy Arceri reverted a previous commit to have it disabled by default.

The shader cache was also improved in this commit, with it now supporting both 32bit and 64bit without deleting the cache if a user switched between them.

Multiple games will likely benefit from decreased loading time and smoother gameplay thanks to a shader cache.

Awesome work from the Mesa team as always. I don't personally have any AMD graphics cards to test with, so hopefully plenty from the community can test to see if it can stay enabled for Mesa 17.1. Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
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Shmerl 6 March 2017 at 12:05 am UTC
Great. Rebuilding Mesa now.
STiAT 6 March 2017 at 12:23 am UTC
They fixed a lot with mesa 17, and they seem to be on a good path with 17.1 too. Mesa is really progressing a lot lately.

I'm quite happy I gave AMD a shot with the low-priced RX460 to check it out before I one day buy a more high-end card. Though, that mesa 17 came around the corner at about the same time certainly helped since a lot of games work now which didn't work before.


Last edited by STiAT at 6 March 2017 at 12:23 am UTC
Madeanaccounttocomment 6 March 2017 at 12:27 am UTC
Phoronix has already run tests. Loading times in Deus Ex MD have been drastically reduced but most other games tested didn't show much results. However that there have been no negative consequences makes this is a huge win even if it's only beneficial for a few select games.

The results also show an FPS increase which is weird because from what I've gathered this feature shouldn't improve FPS. Someone on forums mentioned it has something to do with the benchmark restarting itself but honestly I don't quite understand the explanation given.

pal666there is no fps improvements from this feature. it is seen on benchmark only because benchmark is short and restarts game. if you don't restart game, you will see no fps improvements during play after first shader loads.


Last edited by Madeanaccounttocomment at 6 March 2017 at 12:28 am UTC
GustyGhost 6 March 2017 at 4:47 am UTC
I think Dead Island needs this feature badly.
buenaventura 6 March 2017 at 10:36 am UTC
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I wonder if I will have shorter loading times with xcom2 and Pillars of Eternity. Will try! Great.
ziabice 6 March 2017 at 11:19 am UTC
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How this impacts Shadow of Mordor on radeonsi?
cRaZy-bisCuiT 6 March 2017 at 1:00 pm UTC
I would also be interested in if the loading time of Trine 2 and Trine 3 will decrease. The game keeps in loafing for a very long time.
KuJo 6 March 2017 at 1:15 pm UTC
Wow! I have just updated my padoka-ppa ( https://launchpad.net/~paulo-miguel-dias/+archive/ubuntu/mesa ) with which I have Mesa 17.1 dev support. The patch mentioned here was added there about 6 hours ago. I have an AMD R9 280 (GCN 1.1) on AMDGPU with RadeonSI, and with this ppa the OpenGL Version is up to 4.5 .

~$ glxinfo | grep version

server glx version string: 1.4
client glx version string: 1.4
GLX version: 1.4
    Max core profile version: 4.5
    Max compat profile version: 3.0
    Max GLES1 profile version: 1.1
    Max GLES[23] profile version: 3.1
OpenGL core profile version string: 4.5 (Core Profile) Mesa 17.1.0-devel - padoka PPA
OpenGL core profile shading language version string: 4.50
OpenGL version string: 3.0 Mesa 17.1.0-devel - padoka PPA
OpenGL shading language version string: 1.30
OpenGL ES profile version string: OpenGL ES 3.1 Mesa 17.1.0-devel - padoka PPA
OpenGL ES profile shading language version string: OpenGL ES GLSL ES 3.10


A before-and-after comparison makes me happy: The loading time of Deus EX: MD has shrunk from almost 5 minutes to under 1 minute! Really, wow!

I'm really curious how this affects the ingame performance.


Last edited by KuJo at 6 March 2017 at 1:23 pm UTC
Creak 6 March 2017 at 1:16 pm UTC
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MadeanaccounttocommentPhoronix has already run tests. Loading times in Deus Ex MD have been drastically reduced but most other games tested didn't show much results. However that there have been no negative consequences makes this is a huge win even if it's only beneficial for a few select games.

The results also show an FPS increase which is weird because from what I've gathered this feature shouldn't improve FPS. Someone on forums mentioned it has something to do with the benchmark restarting itself but honestly I don't quite understand the explanation given.
For those who don't know which article it is: http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=article&item=radeonsi-shader-cache&num=1

The increased FPS is simply because there is less stuttering due to shader compilation in between two frames. The number shown is an average after a few minutes of gameplay. Mainly you won't see an increase, but you will feel that the games stutter less (from the second time you launch them)


Last edited by Creak at 6 March 2017 at 1:16 pm UTC
ungutknut 6 March 2017 at 3:39 pm UTC
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KuJoand with this ppa the OpenGL Version is up to 4.5 .
But it looks like your version string still says 3.0... so I guess dying light still won't work with it? Anybody tested that?
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