Author Topic: Current support distributions for Navi AMD  (Read 583 times)

MauryG5

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Current support distributions for Navi AMD
« on: September 07, 2020, 04:05:17 am »
Hello everyone, I wanted to know if to date, as well Fedora, if there is some other distribution of Linux for our architecture, which has the drivers to normal operation GPUs AMD series  Navi 10/14. Someone has information about? Thanks

pocock

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Re: Current support distributions for Navi AMD
« Reply #1 on: September 07, 2020, 06:47:13 am »
On Debian buster, it should be possible with updated kernel and mesa packages from the buster-backports catalog.

This shows how to search the current versions of mesa packages in buster-backports, nobody backported them at the time of writing this reply.

If I was using a Navi card myself, I would prepare the necessary backports and find a way to make those packages available conveniently.  For now, I decided to start with the RX 580 and wait for the Big Navi cards to arrive.  I don't feel it is a good use of money to buy an RX 5700 today when the Big Navi might come in 2 weeks.

OpenBSD commented that amdgpu is currently being adapted for the powerpc64 port, that list might be the best place to get further details about Navi.

On any distribution, developers are sometimes willing to make an extra effort to support things like this if the manufacturer or another user can provide free or subsidized access to the hardware.
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MPC7500

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Re: Current support distributions for Navi AMD
« Reply #2 on: September 07, 2020, 10:33:34 am »
The Navi problems are Kernel related. You will face that problem on any POWER-distribution.

MauryG5

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Re: Current support distributions for Navi AMD
« Reply #3 on: September 07, 2020, 02:22:53 pm »
For me personally, big navi is not fully exploitable as we don't have great software to run that requires all that power.  Of course for those who have to buy now, maybe it is better to wait, but I repeat, it does not seem to me that with the software currently available for Power, we can unfortunately take advantage of a card like the big navi.  So in summary, you tell me that if you install one of those packages on Debian, can you use Navi?  But are there no real drivers now, given the time that has passed since the release of Navi 10/14 ?!

pocock

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Re: Current support distributions for Navi AMD
« Reply #4 on: September 07, 2020, 04:58:55 pm »

On any Linux, you need a combination of the following:

- the kernel
- the firmware blob packages
- other libraries like mesa
- xserver-xorg-video-amdgpu

While it is a long time since the first Navi cards released, please remember that Debian only makes a release every 2 years.  Debian freezes 6 months before the release.  The current Debian stable release, buster, entered freeze back in January 2019:
https://release.debian.org/buster/freeze_policy.html

and the next stable freeze will be in 2021.  That is why backport packages are necessary for Debian users.

Every user has different requirements.  I personally don't need a Big Navi right now, I never do any gaming or 3D, but I think it may be worth paying a little bit more money to have a PCIe 4.0 card that can handle multiple monitors, maybe even a multi-seat configuration in future.  If it has better video encoding and decoding that will be useful for anybody running OBS but they haven't given any confirmation whether codecs like AV1 will be included in the spec.
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MauryG5

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Re: Current support distributions for Navi AMD
« Reply #5 on: September 08, 2020, 10:12:41 am »
So you mean that only on the next Debian 2021 could there be natively support for Navi 10/14 right? Otherwise it takes everything you listed above. When it comes to handling multiple monitors and PCIe 4.0 support, the Radeon 5700/5700 XTs have support for both, so you can do all of this with them already.

pocock

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Re: Current support distributions for Navi AMD
« Reply #6 on: September 08, 2020, 12:34:21 pm »

That is the way Debian traditionally works, yes.

The Debian backports facility gives you a way to work around that for specific packages that you want now.

The Debian testing distribution also gives you a way to get newer packages but if you run the testing distribution, every package on your computer can potentially change at any time when a developer updates it.  Debian testing could be considered a rolling release, every package has been through a short period of testing, 5-10 days before you get it.
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MauryG5

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Re: Current support distributions for Navi AMD
« Reply #7 on: September 08, 2020, 02:52:49 pm »
I get it, so I better wait if I want to try another distro, I use Fedora and I am fine, I think it's the best or one of the best for Power. I'd just like to try and see how another distro performs to have something different every now and then. While about Fedora 32 Workstation what can you tell me more precisely? Some time ago when I tried to install it it gave me an error and did not allow me to start the installation disk, does anyone know why? Thank you