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Old 08-03-2010, 01:53 PM   #1
HGPilot
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Exceed/Exceed 3D performance under OpenSuSE 11.2


We've used Exceed and Exceed3D X server software to run OpenGL 3D simulation software for a long time, and it has always worked great. Now, a new box that runs OpenSuSE 11.2 (kernel 2.6) shows terrible display performance with Exceed.

Exceed 10 on Windows XP works great for OpenSuSE 10 and earlier, but the same display platform grinds to a halt for OpenSuSE 11.2. We tried upgrading to the latest version of Exceed, version 14, but still no joy.

As an alternative, VNC works okay for desktop stuff, but just doesn't run the 3D apps like a dedicated server does (or should).

The reps at OpenText, the makers of Exceed, scratched their heads over this one.

Does anyone have any experience with this combination of software?
 
Old 08-04-2010, 06:02 PM   #2
ahedler
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I'm a little curious why you'd run a commercial X server on a system that has its own X server. As far as I'm aware, most versions of Linux and Unix that have a GUI will have an X server running the GUI. There could be exceptions, but I know that OpenSuSE has its own X server; that's how it runs most of its applications.

In my experience, Exceed is a Windows-based package to allow the use of X applications on a Windows platform. Are you running it under Wine? In essence, you're running a Windows emulator (well, not really, but almost) which is an X application (I'm pretty sure) to run a Windows-based X server so you can run X applications.

In short, you probably don't need Exceed if you're running OpenSuSE.
 
Old 08-05-2010, 10:20 AM   #3
HGPilot
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Hi ahedler,

Thanks for your reply. You are correct if only one computer is involved - but I have two.

My desktop system is a modest Windows computer with a pretty decent graphics card. The program that I need to run lives on a Linux box. I cannot run the program on my desktop system because the desktop runs Windows, and I cannot sit at the Linux box because it resides in a server room and has no display attached to it.

Exceed allows me to display the graphics produced by the Linux program on my Windows desktop. It does not work like Wine, which runs Windows under Linux, but rather it permits communication over a network with an X program.

X is a little confusing in that it comes in two pieces, a client and a server, and the pieces are named backward from what you might expect. The *server* is the part that receives X commands and displays the graphics (Exceed is the server in my case). The client is a program that generates X commands for display. If you work on a Linux box, both pieces reside on the same machine, and there is no evidence that a client/server relationship even exists. The beauty of this design is that the server can be separated from the client over a network. Exceed allows a Windows computer to act as an X server and to display X graphics.

What about VNC, you might ask? VNC is great. All you need is a java-enabled browser, and you can connect to a Linux computer and work on its desktop, all graphically. You can do it from pretty much any platform. VNC lets the remote computer's X clients and server render the scene to be displayed. It then transmits the pixels of the scene to the display computer. To reduce network traffic, it only transmits pixels that have changed from scene to scene.

Where VNC stumbles, at least in this case, is 3D. 3D rendering produces a very large volume of pixels to be transmitted, which can consume a lot of network bandwidth. Exceed/Exceed 3D (and X in general) only requires the 3D "commands" to be transmitted over the network, where the local display computer can rely on its own graphics hardware to do the rendering. Thus, when you spin a molecule or a helicopter wake, it happens more smoothly under X than it does under VNC.

Until recently, the combination of Exceed/Exceed3D 10 on my trusty Windows desktop has performed admirably when rendering 3D graphics from our trusty old Linux boxes. It still works great. But we have added a shiny new screamer that runs OpenSuSE 11.2, and life is not so good in the land of X and Exceed. Even the KDE desktop performs so slowly that it is not usable. Upgrading to the obviously superior (?) Exceed 14 did not solve the problem. The folks at OpenText, the makers of Exceed, were sympathetic, but they have not seen this particular problem before, perhaps because OpenSuSE 11.2 is so new.

It is my hope that someone in the LinuxQuestions community has been in a similar situation, and has made more progress with it than I have. But I'll keep hacking at it. Finger crossed. :-)

HGPilot
 
Old 08-05-2010, 03:41 PM   #4
ahedler
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Ok, I misunderstood. It sounded a bit like you were trying to run Exceed on the Linux box, as opposed to using it to get to the Linux box.

Just out of curiosity, have you tried attaching a display to the Linux server just to get an idea of how it behaves locally? It may not be Exceed that is the culprit. I understand it is not standard practice to put a display on a server, but sometimes it may help to identify where the problem lies. I don't have much experience with OpenGL or video stuff in general on Linux, but I have to wonder if it might be some of the video drivers or the OpenGL implementation having issues.

I'm running an OpenSuSE 11.2 laptop and my kid keeps giving me a hard time about the OpenGL screensavers that crawl, calling it a "nice slideshow" which is almost accurate. Maybe it's something about 11.2 and OpenGL?
 
  


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