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NVIDIA hints at support for Linux open source 'Nouveau' driver

NVIDIA support for Linux open source 'Nouveau' driver

NVIDIA has shocked the open source world with a welcome surprise. Alexandre Courbot announced through the Free Desktop group’s xdg mailing list that the GPU chip maker is providing more support for the Linux world’s open source Nouveau driver for NVIDIA cards.

Just a few years ago, anyone wanting to play games on their PC were almost exclusively locked into the Windows operating system. Valve decided to work on changing that by making Steam available for Linux and eventually basing their upcoming SteamOS on Linux. NVIDIA’s taken notice of the reception Steam’s had in the Linux world and is now working with other open source developers to better support their upcoming Tegra K1 chip.

At the moment, there are no plans to expand the company’s experimental Nouveau work. Courbot advises *nix users not to uninstall the proprietary nv driver just yet with a winking smilie face. It’s possible that there may be plans to further improve the nv driver so *nix gamers can continue to take advantage of the growing number of games making their way to the open source world.

“I guess my email address might surprise some of you, so let me anticipate some questions you might have. 😛 Yes, this work is endorsed by NVIDIA. Several other NVIDIAns (CC’d), including core GPU experts, have provided significant technical guidance and will continue their involvement. Special thanks go to Terje Bergstrom and Ken Adams for their invaluable GPU expertise, and Thierry Reding (at FOSDEM this weekend) for help with debugging and user-space testing.

“Let me also stress that although very exciting, this effort is still experimental, so I would like to make sure that nobody makes excessive expectations based on these few patches. The scope of this work is strictly limited to Tegra (although given the similarities desktop GPU support will certainly benefit from it indirectly), and we do not have any plan to work on user-space support. So do not uninstall that proprietary driver just yet. ;)”

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