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Old 04-19-2013, 07:32 AM   #1
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ATI Radeon: Do the newer cards require proprietary firmware?

Hi. I want to buy an AMD graphics card, because I understand that they have good FOSS support. However, I've had problems in the past because the older ATI card I bought, and the chip in on my motherboard, both required a proprietary firmware blob from a non-libre Linux kernel. So I'm wondering if that is something that is no longer a problem in the newer ATI cards, and if so, which of the ATI "series" it is safe for me to buy.

I'm most interested, I think, in the r800 (Evergreen) series, because apparently Gallium3D is targeting this series for their best OpenGL and OpenCL support. (Yes, I'm interested in GPGPU programming.)

I posted a similar thread a few months back, but I didn't learn much at the time because I was less educated on the subject, and I didn't know which questions to ask.
Old 04-19-2013, 08:35 AM   #2
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Newer cards also need firmware.
Old 04-19-2013, 08:36 AM   #3
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All ATI GPUs require a firmware blob, even when using the open source drivers. The developers have never considered replacing the closed firmware blobs a priority.


Last edited by adamk75; 04-20-2013 at 09:27 AM.


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