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News Valve hits Left 4 Dead 2 performance high - on Linux

Discussion in 'Article Discussion' started by Gareth Halfacree, 2 Aug 2012.

  1. Byron C

    Byron C Over-reacting and over-analysing since 1982

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    It's an excellent step forward, but sadly this only applies to games utilising the Source engine. The problem remains that many games utilise DirectX, which cannot be used outside of Windows.

    Just wanted to pick up on this:

    I really don't want to make this sound like open source zealotry - or a criticism of the article - but this is being looked at from a different perspective than Torvalds. Valve don't need to give a toss about everything being open source, as long as the implementation is there and it performs well. Should Valve really care that the closed-source code for official Nvidia drivers cannot be integrated into the open-source kernel and need to be distributed as a pre-compiled binary with a proprietary license? Nvidia have a vested interest in making their products perform well under linux, so I can imagine that they're more than happy to cooperate with and support game developers.
     
  2. Shirty

    Shirty W*nker! Super Moderator

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    Never stop posting Gareth, your acerbic defences of your journalistic integrity always see me reading comment threads these days, even when I have absolutely zero interest in what I'm reading about (like this article - no offence) :)
     
  3. lysaer

    lysaer Suck my unit! Kirk lazarus (2008)

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    Glide > all !

    Sent from my GT-I9300 using Tapatalk 2
     
  4. Scarlet0pimp

    Scarlet0pimp What's a Dremel?

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    Sounds like Valve is just bitter to me.
    Worried about the Windows 8 Market place.
    Dont worry i'll still by my games from Steam.
     
  5. GoodBytes

    GoodBytes How many wifi's does it have?

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    I don't see anything to be exited about.
    All they did, and they say it, they took more time, to optimize the game. I am sure a lot of optimization they did could have been applied to the Windows version. Also, the performance difference isn't large, it's less than 4%

    Blizzard released it's big update for SC2. Before I was unable to play SC2, anything above medium-high with my GTX 260. Now I play smoothly, 60fps at worst, at ultra settings. Games can always be optimized further.
     
    Last edited: 2 Aug 2012
  6. danger89

    danger89 What's a Dremel?

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    Ow very nice, can't wait I only need Linux for gaming, video editing, sound editing, image editing. A world without Windows, how cool is that :D
     
  7. fallenphoenix

    fallenphoenix What's a Dremel?

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    Win7-x64/D3D9* = 270.6 fps
    Win7-x64/OpenGL = 303.4 fps
    Ubuntu-x86/OpenGL = 315 fps

    So we're seeing ~3.7% difference on both systems, which is nothing to sneeze at but probably isn't attributable to the difference in rendering APIs.
    Initially, I thought that difference might be explained by the slight overhead associated with a 64-bit process, but I remembered L4D2 is a 32-bit application and really has no need to be 64-bit as it stands.
    I will readily admit my lack of experience with OpenGL. Basically I know the RH/LH coordinate space difference, and I leave the rest to the open source gurus.

    I'm not trying to defend MS or the DX API, and I have some significant criticisms of both if given an appropriate forum. On the Linux front, I've been a user and fan since 2004/2005 when it was seriously introduced to me by a co-worker (thanks Steven!). Still, as a computer science graduate student, it is my nature to question results such as this that are presented as scientific; especially when they're used to claim X is better than Y.

    EDIT: Almost forgot! Rewriting the memory allocation system to be Linux optimal isn't exactly a trivial task either. To head off the logical response, the way Linux handles memory isn't better/worse than the way Windows does, it's just a different decision that tends to perform better in certain situations.


    *DirectX 9.0c (latest update to D3D9) was released way back in mid-late 2004, and still underpins (IIRC) the majority of titles today. The 360 uses a variant of DX9, and with a few notable exceptions, cross-platform titles stick to the DX9 feature set. Of note, I've read the PS3 uses a form of OpenGL, but I don't have any hands-on experience with the PS3 to know for sure.
     
    Last edited: 2 Aug 2012
  8. faugusztin

    faugusztin I *am* the guy with two left hands

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    Wrong.

    Win7-x64/D3D9* = 270.6 fps
    Win7-x64/OpenGL = 303.4 fps
    Ubuntu-x86/OpenGL = 315 fps
     
  9. Phalanx

    Phalanx Needs more dragons and stuff.

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    Would be interesting to see a OpenGL 4.2 / DirectX 11 comparison.
     
  10. fallenphoenix

    fallenphoenix What's a Dremel?

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    Good catch, thanks. I'll edit my post to fix that.
     
  11. j_jay4

    j_jay4 Minimodder

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    This might be a crazy idea but is there anything stopping Valve making their own version of Linux specifically designed to run games, especially if it runs them faster?

    I can image this working brilliantly as a dual boot setup as I personally rarely multitask during gaming sessions and chat and a browser are already built into Steam anyway so I don't think you would miss Windows whilst playing games.

    Plus this could then be used in Valve based consoles etc, they have got a ten times better catalogue of games compared to the other consoles.

    I think I'm on to something. Valve should pay me.
     
  12. Byron C

    Byron C Over-reacting and over-analysing since 1982

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    Of course not - nothing stopping them at all. I could create my own linux distro, if I wanted to. Whether or not Valve would want to put in all that effort for very little reward is another matter.

    Besides, there are already plenty of lightweight, stripped-down distributions of Linux available already. My laptop runs one of them: Lubuntu.
     
  13. Jimbob

    Jimbob Minimodder

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    It's nice to know that an updated version of OpenGL is better than a 12 year old version of DirectX. Let's not forget that until they significantly optimised OpenGL and the game it was only 6fps.
     
  14. Phalanx

    Phalanx Needs more dragons and stuff.

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    Sauce please...
     
  15. Jimbob

    Jimbob Minimodder

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    Erm, the top of this page!
     
  16. Phil Rhodes

    Phil Rhodes Hypernobber

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    Yes, this is about GL, not DirectX. The way the Linux kernel does timeslicing is actually somewhat less ideal for multithreaded (assuming it is multithreaded) or pseudo-realtime things like video games, not that you'd particularly notice on a modern rig.

    GL does a lot less than DirectX. It is therefore faster.
     
  17. Virus44

    Virus44 What's a Dremel?

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    Interesting will keep an eye out for other games which may follow this path.
     
  18. Phalanx

    Phalanx Needs more dragons and stuff.

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    Sorry, I don't see the part mentioning the 6FPS. I must be blind.

    *goes to get glasses*

    Where is it mate?
     
  19. Malfrex

    Malfrex What's a Dremel?

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    I find it interesting that although people are focusing on the DX9 vs OpenGL debate, they are ignoring the fact the test was also Win 7 x64 vs Ubuntu 32-bit. That means the game isn't able to address the greater memory space available, which could still further performance a little bit.

    In the end, I like the fact we are given a choice and that this will (hopefully) help OpenGL gain traction again. I know the consortium basically let MS kill off OpenGL by letting it stagnate for a long time but it has corrected itself and can do just as much as DX11 can, in some cases more.
     
  20. RichCreedy

    RichCreedy Hey What Who

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    Tomato or brown ? or did you mean source? which was in the article.

    wait til win8 comes out and see if there is a performance boost in that, or try in win8 preview, there have been reports of improved speeds with it already.
     

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