Mesa 21.2 arrives with initial support for Apple M1, improvements for Panfrost, Vulkan and more

Drivers table

After three months of development the release of the new version of the new branch of Table 21.2 which has an experimental state and that after the final stabilization of the code, the stable version 21.2.1 will be released.

This new version of Mesa 21.2 provides full OpenGL 4.6 support for the 965, iris, radeonsi, zink and llvmpipe drivers, plus OpenGL 4.5 support is available for AMD r600 and NVIDIA nvc0.

Table 21.2 main novelties

In Table 21.2 we can find that asahi OpenGL driver included with initial GPU support supplied on chips Apple M1. The controller uses the Gallium interface and is compatible with most of the functions of OpenGL 2.1 and OpenGL ES 2.0, but still cannot be used to run most games.

Another novelty is the inclusion of PanVk driver (developed by Collabora employees) that provides support for graphics API Vulkan GPU ARM Mali Midgard and Bifrost and is positioned as a continuation of the Panfrost project, which provides OpenGL support.

Also, in this new version of Mesa 21.2 Panfrost for Midgard and Bifrost supports OpenGL ES 3.1, although it is mentioned that there are plans to increase performance on Bifrost chips and support for GPUs based on the Valhall architecture (Mali G77 and newer).

The Zink driver has worked so that it can support OpenGL extensions: GL_ARB_sample_locations, GL_ARB_sparse_buffer, GL_ARB_shader_group_vote, GL_ARB_texture, and GL_filter_minlock. DRM format modifiers were added.

While in the Vulkan ANV controller (intelligent) and the OpenGL Iris driver, in this new version se has done preparatory work to support upcoming Intel graphics cards Xe-HPG (DG2). This includes initial ray tracing capabilities and ray tracing shader support.

On the lavapipe driver side, the "wideLines" mode is now supported (provides support for lines with a width greater than 1.0).

It is also mentioned that OpenGL 4.3 already has virgl support and compatibility with Vulkan 1.2 is available for Intel and AMD cardsAs well as in emulator mode (vn), Vulkan 1.1 support is available for Qualcomm GPUs and the lavapipe software rasterizer and Vulkan 1.0 is available for Broadcom VideoCore VI GPU (Raspberry Pi 4).

Of the other changes that stand out of this new version:

  • The Nouveau nv50 driver for NVIDIA GT21x (GeForce GT 2x0) GPUs includes OpenGL ES 3.1 support.
  • Vulkan TURNIP driver and Freedreno OpenGL driver being developed for GPUs
  • Qualcomm Adreno provide initial support for the Adreno a6xx gen4 GPU (a660, a635).
  • The ability to build the RADV driver on the Windows platform using the MSVC compiler has been implemented.
  • Implemented support for dynamic detection and loading of alternative GBM (Generic Buffer Manager) backends. The change is intended to improve Wayland's support on systems with NVIDIA drivers.
  • Vulkan RADV (AMD), ANV (Intel) and lavapipe drivers added support for extensions

Finally if you are interested in knowing more about it About this new version of Mesa 21.1.0 controllers, you can check the details in the following link.

How to install Mesa video drivers on Linux?

Mesa packages found in all Linux distributions, so its installation can be done either by downloading and compiling the source code (All information about it here) or in a relatively simple way, which depends on the availability within the official channels of your distribution or third parties.

For those who are users of Ubuntu, Linux Mint and derivatives they can add the following repository where the drivers are updated quickly.

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:kisak/kisak-mesa -y

Now we are going to update our list of packages and repositories with:

sudo apt update

And finally we can install the drivers with:

sudo apt upgrade

For the case of those who are Arch Linux users and derivatives, we install them with the following command:

sudo pacman -S mesa mesa-demos mesa-libgl lib32-mesa lib32-mesa-libgl

For whoever they are Fedora 32 users can use this repository, so they must enable corp with:

sudo dnf copr enable grigorig/mesa-stable

sudo dnf update

Finally, for those who are openSUSE users, they can install or upgrade by typing:

sudo zypper in mesa

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