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-   -   Why graphics drivers are proprietary (http://www.linux-archive.org/fedora-user/708949-why-graphics-drivers-proprietary.html)

Junayeed Ahnaf 10-02-2012 04:14 AM

Why graphics drivers are proprietary
 
The header is self explanatory. I always wonder what bad would it bring to the vendor if they open source their graphics driver?
*
*
Thoughts?


Junayeed Ahnaf Nirjhor




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Marko Vojinovic 10-02-2012 06:36 AM

Why graphics drivers are proprietary
 
On Tuesday, 2. October 2012. 15.14.59 Junayeed Ahnaf wrote:
> The header is self explanatory. I always wonder what bad would it bring to
> the vendor if they open source their graphics driver? Thoughts?

AFAIK:

* Some details of the internal design of the graphics chip can be reverse-
engineered much more easily by the competitor company, if the driver source is
available up-front.

* There may also be copyright&patent issues of the source code that prevent it
from becoming open source, even if the company wanted to release it.

This is pretty obvious for both nVidia and ATI, which keep the drivers closed-
source, in contrast to Intel, which has open drivers but generally inferior
hardware design. nVidia and ATI have nothing serious to learn from Intel's
design, so to speak. ATI eventually provides the chip specs for the previous-
generation chips, which are old enough to be not relevant for their current
products (and they release the specs, not the source code itself, I guess due
to copyright issues).

HTH, :-)
Marko


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Alan Cox 10-02-2012 01:45 PM

Why graphics drivers are proprietary
 
Another factor is that the drivers may contain a lot of clever stuff. A
long time back one of the problems raised was that vendor A had the
better hardware but vendor B the better drivers. Vendor B's product won
all the benchmarks. If they open sourced it then vendor A would duly have
borrowed all the software tricks and then won hands down.

Alan
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Roberto Ragusa 10-02-2012 06:56 PM

Why graphics drivers are proprietary
 
On 10/02/2012 03:45 PM, Alan Cox wrote:
> Another factor is that the drivers may contain a lot of clever stuff. A
> long time back one of the problems raised was that vendor A had the
> better hardware but vendor B the better drivers. Vendor B's product won
> all the benchmarks. If they open sourced it then vendor A would duly have
> borrowed all the software tricks and then won hands down.

So final users would have had the best hardware running the best drivers
(open source too).
This is something which must not be permitted to happen. :-/

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Marko Vojinovic 10-02-2012 08:17 PM

Why graphics drivers are proprietary
 
On Tuesday, 2. October 2012. 20.56.34 Roberto Ragusa wrote:
> On 10/02/2012 03:45 PM, Alan Cox wrote:
> > Another factor is that the drivers may contain a lot of clever stuff. A
> > long time back one of the problems raised was that vendor A had the
> > better hardware but vendor B the better drivers. Vendor B's product won
> > all the benchmarks. If they open sourced it then vendor A would duly have
> > borrowed all the software tricks and then won hands down.
>
> So final users would have had the best hardware running the best drivers
> (open source too).
> This is something which must not be permitted to happen. :-/

That is one of the features of civilization based on capitalism --- the target
is to gain most money, and to make life miserable for the competition. The
actual needs of the end-users are completely irrelevant, as long as your
product sells more than the competitor's product. ;-)

Best, :-)
Marko


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Alan Evans 10-02-2012 08:18 PM

Why graphics drivers are proprietary
 
On Tue, Oct 2, 2012 at 11:56 AM, Roberto Ragusa wrote:
> So final users would have had the best hardware running the best drivers
> (open source too).
> This is something which must not be permitted to happen. :-/

Not if it helps to sell the competitor's hardware.
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Mark LaPierre 10-03-2012 12:05 AM

Why graphics drivers are proprietary
 
On 10/02/2012 04:18 PM, Alan Evans wrote:

On Tue, Oct 2, 2012 at 11:56 AM, Roberto Ragusa wrote:

So final users would have had the best hardware running the best drivers
(open source too).
This is something which must not be permitted to happen. :-/


Not if it helps to sell the competitor's hardware.


Programmers, and corporations for that matter, have the right to decide
how they choose to distribute their property. Corporations are people
too, that is to say they are people banded together for a common
purpose, and they have to eat too.


Some choose to release their software in open format and then make their
money from support services. That model doesn't work well for hardware
manufacturers. People get pissed off if their hardware doesn't work.
It's hard to download a new video card if you get my drift. Software
can be readily patched and re-installed with little cost aside from the
patching. Can't do that with a $BIG price high end video card.


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Registerd Linux user No #267004
www.counter.li.org
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jdow 10-03-2012 01:52 AM

Why graphics drivers are proprietary
 
On 2012/10/02 13:17, Marko Vojinovic wrote:

On Tuesday, 2. October 2012. 20.56.34 Roberto Ragusa wrote:

On 10/02/2012 03:45 PM, Alan Cox wrote:

Another factor is that the drivers may contain a lot of clever stuff. A
long time back one of the problems raised was that vendor A had the
better hardware but vendor B the better drivers. Vendor B's product won
all the benchmarks. If they open sourced it then vendor A would duly have
borrowed all the software tricks and then won hands down.


So final users would have had the best hardware running the best drivers
(open source too).
This is something which must not be permitted to happen. :-/


That is one of the features of civilization based on capitalism --- the target
is to gain most money, and to make life miserable for the competition. The
actual needs of the end-users are completely irrelevant, as long as your
product sells more than the competitor's product. ;-)


Without the capitalism the customer can expect zero improvement,
particularly with hardware. What incentive would I as a person trying to
make a living off clever video drivers to continue doing so? How would I
put food on my table? How would I afford a house into which to put my
table? How would I live? If the food, table, house and all that is simply
given to me, why should I bother to develop clever video drivers if it
won't improve my life? "Nothing works" is a very succinct summation of
every Communistic or purely socialistic government that the world has
ever tried. Capitalism is, indeed, bad. It's just that it's better than
ANY other system that has EVER been tried. Even Communist China has
discovered this fact. They're moving, remarkably rapidly, towards a
strongly capitalistic society and the people are living better than ever
before as a result. (Remember, a sweatshop job is better than no job at
all if it pays more than you can get with no job at all even if it does
not meet some do-gooder's idea of "minimum wage.")

If I know how to do something that people really want and can live
comfortably on what I can earn doing this, by what right does anybody
come in and tell me I have to share my know how with all and sundry
so that I'm stuck cold and hungry because I can no longer earn money
performing my unique service? That is the foundation if the concept of
intellectual property.

{^_^}
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10-03-2012 08:13 AM

Why graphics drivers are proprietary
 
-----Original Message-----
From: users-bounces@lists.fedoraproject.org [mailto:users-bounces@lists.fedoraproject.org] On Behalf Of jdow
Sent: Wednesday, October 03, 2012 3:52 AM
To: Community support for Fedora users
Subject: Re: Why graphics drivers are proprietary

On 2012/10/02 13:17, Marko Vojinovic wrote:
> On Tuesday, 2. October 2012. 20.56.34 Roberto Ragusa wrote:
>> On 10/02/2012 03:45 PM, Alan Cox wrote:
>>> Another factor is that the drivers may contain a lot of clever stuff. A
>>> long time back one of the problems raised was that vendor A had the
>>> better hardware but vendor B the better drivers. Vendor B's product won
>>> all the benchmarks. If they open sourced it then vendor A would duly have
>>> borrowed all the software tricks and then won hands down.
>>
>> So final users would have had the best hardware running the best drivers
>> (open source too).
>> This is something which must not be permitted to happen. :-/
>
> That is one of the features of civilization based on capitalism --- the target
> is to gain most money, and to make life miserable for the competition. The
> actual needs of the end-users are completely irrelevant, as long as your
> product sells more than the competitor's product. ;-)

Without the capitalism the customer can expect zero improvement,
particularly with hardware. What incentive would I as a person trying to
make a living off clever video drivers to continue doing so?

What has capitalism to do with that?
It is about freedom of choice.

If you think you can build something better or cheaper, you must have the freedom to do so.
Otoh, if a state-owned-company has "a Plan" to produce the next five years or so, crap at bargain process, so be it.

Just as any customer has the freedom to choose any product.
And let the customer decide what is important to him: price, feature, quality, stability, support...

Hw


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jdow 10-03-2012 08:23 AM

Why graphics drivers are proprietary
 
On 2012/10/03 01:13, J.Witvliet@mindef.nl wrote:

-----Original Message-----
From: users-bounces@lists.fedoraproject.org [mailto:users-bounces@lists.fedoraproject.org] On Behalf Of jdow
Sent: Wednesday, October 03, 2012 3:52 AM
To: Community support for Fedora users
Subject: Re: Why graphics drivers are proprietary

On 2012/10/02 13:17, Marko Vojinovic wrote:

On Tuesday, 2. October 2012. 20.56.34 Roberto Ragusa wrote:

On 10/02/2012 03:45 PM, Alan Cox wrote:

Another factor is that the drivers may contain a lot of clever stuff. A
long time back one of the problems raised was that vendor A had the
better hardware but vendor B the better drivers. Vendor B's product won
all the benchmarks. If they open sourced it then vendor A would duly have
borrowed all the software tricks and then won hands down.


So final users would have had the best hardware running the best drivers
(open source too).
This is something which must not be permitted to happen. :-/


That is one of the features of civilization based on capitalism --- the target
is to gain most money, and to make life miserable for the competition. The
actual needs of the end-users are completely irrelevant, as long as your
product sells more than the competitor's product. ;-)


Without the capitalism the customer can expect zero improvement,
particularly with hardware. What incentive would I as a person trying to
make a living off clever video drivers to continue doing so?

What has capitalism to do with that?
It is about freedom of choice.

If you think you can build something better or cheaper, you must have the freedom to do so.
Otoh, if a state-owned-company has "a Plan" to produce the next five years or so, crap at bargain process, so be it.

Just as any customer has the freedom to choose any product.
And let the customer decide what is important to him: price, feature, quality, stability, support...

Hw


Hw, if there is no incentive to do something, why bother to do it? That
dirty rotten awful stinky evil capitalism provides the incentive. If I
don't get something additional out of working hard, I don't work hard -
indeed, why should I bother to work at all?

{^_^}
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