LAS F22 review - summary

Enrico Tagliavini enrico.tagliavini at
Tue Jun 9 10:04:29 UTC 2015

Hi Steven,

as I said already I was the person doing the fglrx package for gentoo
for a couple of years (and I stepped up because radeon was not good
enough for my card), so I know the pain. And I can tell you this is
100% AMD fault. Long story short their main targets are enterprise
distributions like Red Hat and SLES. They try to get Ubuntu as well
but at the end of the day they have to ship a very pre release driver
just for Ubuntu to get it working. They don't care about upstream
Linux kernel and Xorg support and they don't care about Fedora.

This is the reason I stepped down from the fglrx package maintainer in
gentoo. It is not that Fedora people has no love for fglrx, it is
simply that fglrx doesn't work with up to date components. *It cannot
start at all*. Don't call Fedora contributors or rpmfusion devs hater
on Catalyst, they are not! It is the opposite: AMD has no love for
Fedora and upstream Linux and Xorg. It is 100% AMD fault.

You can see a very different behaviour in the two main competitors:
Intel has a serious open source driver solution, Nvidia is promptly
supporting new upstream releases.

Crippling Fedora by shipping *unsupported* kernel releases (normal
kernel releases are supported for a very short time) or outdated Xorg
packages would be a great damage to the Fedora project. As much as
free software and open source packages should meet a quality standard
in Fedora (for example see why Chromium is not available), so must
proprietary stuff if that has to be included (via rpmfusion if this is
the preferred way). Fglrx, as it is today, is not going to meet the
requirements. Maybe the new version based on AMDGPU has a chance....
only time will tell.

If you want to use AMD hardware you have to use an OS supported by
them. Fedora is not one and this has to change AMD side first, then a
package in rpmfusion would appear in no time I'm sure.

The text you quoted from me was not to ask for inclusion of every
proprietary driver, especially at the expense of the main project
goal. But of course software alone doesn't make a computer, if you
have a component better supported by proprietary drivers where the
open source one is missing or falling short (your point about your
laptop aging out is very valid, and very frustrating process) I think
the proprietary option should be available with a reasonably low
effort for a normal user (not an advanced user). So my point was not
to add more proprietary drivers into rpmfusion (well not necessarily),
but to make it a little bit easier for the end user.

Best regards

On 8 June 2015 at 19:13, Steven Rosenberg <stevenhrosenberg at> wrote:
> On Fri, Jun 5, 2015 at 1:41 AM, Enrico Tagliavini
> <enrico.tagliavini at> wrote:
>> well you might be lucky enough not to need proprietary drivers and
>> this add a lot of benefits both in practical terms and also in ethics
>> if you believe in free software. That said if you don't support
>> proprietary driver you basically cut out people from using Fedora. The
>> only and main reason I don't suggest Fedora to my friends starting
>> with Linux is it misses NVIDIA proprietary drivers support and
>> bumblebee packages [1]. Granted there is rpmfusion for the drivers....
>> but bumblebee is another story. The repo mentioned in the fedora wiki
>> is not really up to quality standard, at all. But I digress.
> RPM Fusion support for Nvidia seems OK, but support for Catalyst/fglrx has
> been nonexistent in Fedora 20-22.
> My hardware (2013 HP laptop) eventually "aged out" of needing
> fglrx/Catalyst, and running the open Radeon is less trouble, for sure. But
> for new hardware, it's sure nice to have Catalyst (and I presume Nvidia)
> around and packaged.
> But I've accepted that the Fedora Project doesn't want proprietary graphics
> drivers in its archive, and would really (really, really) prefer that its
> users refrain from using them.
> Even when packaged by RPM Fusion, the Catalyst driver is a pain to use in
> Fedora because the kernel is updating so frequently. Installing it from
> upstream is even worse.
> Luckily Radeon driver and Linux kernel development moves so fast that after
> a year I was able to successfully run w/o Catalyst. But that first year was
> hell.
> I've been running Fedora on this laptop since F18 because it was the best on
> this hardware at the time, and I love Fedora. But if Catalyst was important
> to me, I'd be looking elsewhere (CentOS, Debian, Ubuntu ...).
> While Fedora is plenty stable overall, it's not so stable when running
> Catalyst because AMD is so far behind and Fedora is moving so quickly, so
> for those reasons -- plus Radeon's great strides in recent years -- I don't
> miss it.
> But there is no love for Catalyst among Fedora contributors, or somebody
> would be packaging it for RPM Fusion.
> --
> Steven Rosenberg
> --
> desktop mailing list
> desktop at

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