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OpenGL GL version, new ATI card

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I just bought a Radeon HD 4870, installed the latest driver (Catalyst 9.5), and the GL version returned from glGetString( GL_VERSION ) is 1.1! I might be wrong, but isn't the version returned from glGetString based on the card driver? I'm using SDL and GLEW in VC++2008. My system is AMD/ATI, on XP SP3 (32-bit). My old system had a 7900GT and reported the GL version correctly, and ran my app smoothly. All searches for this problem have found issues with ATI / GL 3.0 and 64-bit systems, but everyone says that GL 2.1 works fine. Is it a driver issue, or am I forgetting something? This is the output I get: + SDL Video Driver (windib) + OpenGL version: (1.1.0) + OpenGL vendor: (Microsoft Corporation) + OpenGL renderer: (GDI Generic) + GLEW version: 1.5.1 This post's OP has issue an isue creating a 3.0 context, but gets a 2.1 context just fine. This guy has a laptop card and solved the issue by using a third-party driver, but his source only has drivers for ATI mobility cards. This geeks3d.com post says there's an issue with 3.0 contexts, but no issue with 2.1!

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Thank you for the suggestion, but I can't switch from SDL at this point in development. I'm considering GLFW for my next project.

I checked the SDL mailing lists and found someone else with the same issue. I thought there should be an easy solution, and there is! For anyone with the same problem, just remove the hardware acceleration line for ATI cards: SDL_GL_SetAttribute( SDL_GL_ACCELERATED_VISUAL, 1 );
This line is supposed to guarantee hardware acceleration, but for whatever reason it returns the windows software driver for ATI cards. Removing it solved the problem for me, but I'll need to test the same build on my Nvidia card to see if hardware acceleration is sacrificed. Also, there is a question of whether shaders will use hardware acceleration without the call. I'll post back with the results.

The thread on the SDL mailing lists.

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Well it seems leaving the acceleration line commented-out works fine on XP for Nvidia and ATI cards. My app reports the correct hardware vendor for both. I don't know if OSX or linux builds should keep the line, though.

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Original post by sneakyrobot
Well it seems leaving the acceleration line commented-out works fine on XP for Nvidia and ATI cards. My app reports the correct hardware vendor for both. I don't know if OSX or linux builds should keep the line, though.
Pretty sure that particular switch is completely useless.
Quote:
Original post by Riraito
As far as osx (10.5) I've never even used that line, and I always get an accelerated context, so I don't think you have to worry about that.
I don't think SDL can give you an unaccelerated OpenGL context under OS X - lord knows I tried hard enough, when I needed the software renderer for debugging.

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As far as osx (10.5) I've never even used that line, and I always get an accelerated context, so I don't think you have to worry about that.
I don't think SDL can give you an unaccelerated OpenGL context under OS X - lord knows I tried hard enough, when I needed the software renderer for debugging.[/quote]
if u hide the opengl driver (rename it) + stick a software driver in the path eg mesa, then that will be used

btw Ive never used SDL_GL_ACCELERATED_VISUAL + all my stuff has worked fine on various PCs
I just had a look at what it does, + I can see where it can cause a problem, if something with the pixelformat is not 100% it appears to bail completely (giving u software), Ideally u should handle this case yourself (i.e. choose another pixelformat) but personally I wouldnt worry about it

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Original post by zedz
Quote:
Quote:
As far as osx (10.5) I've never even used that line, and I always get an accelerated context, so I don't think you have to worry about that.
I don't think SDL can give you an unaccelerated OpenGL context under OS X - lord knows I tried hard enough, when I needed the software renderer for debugging.
if u hide the opengl driver (rename it) + stick a software driver in the path eg mesa, then that will be used
Why would I want to do that? Apple's own software renderer is 100x more capable than MESA, and generally faster as well. I have always wondered why none of these windowing toolkits expose a setting to select it.

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Ive no idea how apples software gl version performs, yes perhaps it is faster
but a reason to use mesa
A/ same on apple/ms/linux
B/ open source

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Original post by zedz
Ive no idea how apples software gl version performs, yes perhaps it is faster.
Only marginally faster, from what I have seen, but it does tend to support a wider set of extension that MESA, and is always installed on all Macs, so why replace it?
Quote:
A/ same on apple/ms/linux
OpenGL is already a cross-platform API - I don't see a point to using a cross-patform implementation.
Quote:
B/ open source
That is only an advantage if you plan to change the source, and I have no intention of rewriting an OpenGL implementation - that is why I use a 3D API in the first place.

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Original post by zedz
Ive no idea how apples software gl version performs, yes perhaps it is faster
but a reason to use mesa
A/ same on apple/ms/linux
B/ open source

C/ Bugged, awfully slow, unstable, standard non-compliant, and totally unreliable.

My experience with Mesa is something I really would like to forget. I have seldomly used a piece of software that made me want to kill things the way Mesa did (including ATI's old OpenGL drivers, and that says something ;) Do yourself a favour, and stay clear of Mesa as far as you can.

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Original post by Yann L
Quote:
Original post by zedz
Ive no idea how apples software gl version performs, yes perhaps it is faster
but a reason to use mesa
A/ same on apple/ms/linux
B/ open source

C/ Bugged, awfully slow, unstable, standard non-compliant, and totally unreliable.

My experience with Mesa is something I really would like to forget. I have seldomly used a piece of software that made me want to kill things the way Mesa did (including ATI's old OpenGL drivers, and that says something ;) Do yourself a favour, and stay clear of Mesa as far as you can.


Mesa has gotten better in the past 12 months. Mesa 6.5 was horrible, as was 7.0. Version 7.3/7.4 is the first version that's managed to run any shader I've thrown at it (although I've hit some non-conformant behavior in specific use cases outside GLSL). Yes, there are bugs reported on 6.5 that are still not fixed, but it's become pretty reliable.

I think Mesa 7.6 will ship with a new, gallium-based state tracker. I guess we'll hit a few regressions initially, but the change will probably improve Mesa immensely in the near future.

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Original post by Fiddler
Mesa has gotten better in the past 12 months. Mesa 6.5 was horrible, as was 7.0. Version 7.3/7.4 is the first version that's managed to run any shader I've thrown at it (although I've hit some non-conformant behavior in specific use cases outside GLSL). Yes, there are bugs reported on 6.5 that are still not fixed, but it's become pretty reliable.

I think Mesa 7.6 will ship with a new, gallium-based state tracker. I guess we'll hit a few regressions initially, but the change will probably improve Mesa immensely in the near future.
All of which just confirms my suggestion of sticking with Apple's software renderer on the Mac, since it deals with *every* shader I throw at it - typically with more features and better standards conformance than any real hardware I have access to.

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in that case then the apple version is prolly better

I know opensource is one of those topics that have a lot of zealots , stallman etc on one side, others including at least 3 moderators on this site on the other (Im in the middle)

but as Ive said before opensource is a good idea for librarys etc that
A/ must last for longer than typical apps
B/ have lots of other stuff dependant on them

ok lets take the OPs case opengl software under windows, I believe theres only 2 choices for pure software opengl.

Q/ which is better the
mesa 2.1 or microsoft's 1.1 implementation
A/ obviously mesa's version as its more capable + less buggy + faster to boot

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Original post by zedz
but as Ive said before opensource is a good idea for librarys etc that
A/ must last for longer than typical apps
B/ have lots of other stuff dependant on them
However, I will take an Apple-maintained package over a volunteer-maintained package any day of the week - Apple's engineers don't just suddenly leave the project on a whim [wink]
Quote:
ok lets take the OPs case opengl software under windows, I believe theres only 2 choices for pure software opengl.
Fair enough, but if you go back and read his post, the OP's entire point was to avoid software rendering - as is the general case.

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Apple's engineers don't just suddenly leave the project on a whim

often they dont have a choice, its made higher up the foodchain

history is made of 100s of cases of APIs/technologies being abandoned by companies like apple/MS etc, apparently before opengl on apple they used quickdraw3d (now defunct) who knows what 3dAPI apple will be using in 5 years time? perhaps theyll be using there own raytraced based api!

well we're drifting off topic

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