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AMD Graphics Software Upgrades Games

AMD's 'Crimson' Driver Software Released (anandtech.com) 50

An anonymous reader writes: Yesterday marked the launch of AMD's 'Crimson' driver software. It replaces the old Catalyst driver software, and represents a change in how AMD develops bug fixes, improves performance, and adds features. AnandTech took a detailed look at the new driver software. They say, "By focusing feature releases around the end of the year driver, AMD is able to cut down on what parts of the driver they change (and thereby can possibly break) at other times of the year, and try to knock out all of their feature-related bugs at once. At the same time it makes the annual driver release a significant event, as AMD releases a number of new features all at once. However on the other hand this means that AMD has few features launching any other time of the year, which can make it look like they're not heavily invested in feature development at those points." On a more positive note, the article adds, "Looking under the hood there's no single feature that's going to blow every Radeon user away at once, but overall there are a number of neat features here that should be welcomed by various user groups. ... Meanwhile AMD's radical overhaul of their control panel via the new Radeon Settings application will be quickly noticed by everyone."
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AMD's 'Crimson' Driver Software Released

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  • by Meneth ( 872868 ) on Wednesday November 25, 2015 @08:23AM (#51000603)
    Maybe this is why Windows 10 removed the old Catalyst Control Center a few days ago? A bit early, sure, but still...
    • by Mashiki ( 184564 )

      Maybe, but the only reason I can think of is because people have it set to automatically install drivers. That's easy enough to turn off.

      • You'd think that, wouldn't you? But have you actually tried it?

        Windows 10 just does whatever it feels like with driver upgrades, regardless of what the settings are. I have problems with older intel graphics chips because of that all the time, old chips won't run new drivers without bios upgrades, the manufacturers won't release bios fixes, so no matter how many times you boot safe mode, blacklist the driver update, tell windows not to download drivers from windows update, etc. Windows 10 still just down
        • by KGIII ( 973947 )

          Caveat: I don't own a Windows computer and haven't used Windows 10 for more than five minutes. However, I read that you could install the drivers in safe mode and change the settings from within safe mode and that they'd stick. The person that mentioned it, here on this site, is a fairly reputable person.

    • That would just be Windows 10 being a dick about "incompatibility issues"

  • by Sycraft-fu ( 314770 ) on Wednesday November 25, 2015 @08:41AM (#51000693)

    Not the driver, that's out, but that they are going to change how they do drivers. They've said that numerous times before, and always the situation is the same. They are very slow at getting actual release drivers out (they are forever beta versions) and their OpenGL performance and support is garbage (to the point that HFSS would fail to run on systems with AMD cards).

    So AMD: Less talk, more good drivers. I want to support you, I really do, but I've been burned too many times.

    • by Billly Gates ( 198444 ) on Wednesday November 25, 2015 @09:44AM (#51001005) Journal

      You say that as a bad thing.

      Read a game developer comment on here and they will say AMD hardware is a joy to use. Especially on the XBOXONE... but on Windows it is hell due to bugs and workarounds due to optimizations from 15 years worth of games loading up.

      Consider it like IE 6 where you need work arounds on work arounds and each new release adds more changes to make some new game cheat on benchmarks. Nvidia is now falling under this trap too. The great thing about FirePro and Quadro cards is the hardware is almost identical to the gaming cards except with ECC ram. It is the drivers that make them pro.

      • And yet for all your misdirected Windows whining DirectX for Windows is the only area that AMD cards perform well. Their Linux drivers blow, as noted by other posts here, and that is because AMD can't write OpenGL drivers to save their life.

        nVidia, on the other hand, has extremely fast and solid drivers for Linux.

        • Not really.

          Arstechnica.com just a few days ago posted some benchmarks with Steam. With nvidia hardware even it is about 40% slower than Windows.

          I am not an AMD fanboy at all. I have an nvidia 770 on my system at home and an ATI 7850 before then. I hate both companies actually but for different reasons. Alot has to do with games too. Even if you had a solid driver for Linux the game is designed and only tested with Windows and they use some 3rd rate outsourcer overseas to port it to Linux ... or even WIndows

  • Radeon drivers were shit for decades, before they morphed into AMD shit drivers. If you have generation-old GPU, you won't get any support for modern titles.

    While I understand there are a lot of cloak and dagger going on with standards and implementations, AMD is consistently on the losing end.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    what does it really bring? Every generaiton of video card driver seems to be development in an even bloatier control panel. Same goes for Nvidia.

    I'd love it if AMD went back to those simple tabbed panels with the big round blue buttons.
  • Especially with older games. I've yet to hear anyone say AMD has ever returned to the glory days of my 1650X where I could boot up any old game and have a reasonable expectation it wouldn't crash. I tried the 4000 series years ago. Worked fine with Call of Duty, crash city with Psychonauts. I switched to nVidia, but I can't say I haven't looked back...
    • I have games from Win9X through 2015 and I have no issues playing them on my R9 280, in fact the only issues I have playing older games is I often have to bypass the shitastic DRM they used them like Starfuck and SecuSUC which will if you aren't careful try to shoehorn a 32bit kernel driver into a 64bit kernel and fuck the OS. Luckily most of the companies making that shit were so damned cheap they kept their piss poor 16bit installers way into the 32bit era and thus won't be able to run the installer.


  • >> AMD's 'Crimson' Driver Software Released

    Because it will make you SEE RED. Heh heh hee. Thank you I'll be here all week.

  • What a terrible clusterfuck this 'revamp' is.
    1. Only half of the settings are 'ported'. The other half (including Crossfire) can only be found when pressing 'additional settings', which opens (a stripped version of) the old AMD Catalyst Control Center. Shit, I get that some projects require having legacy code and new code next to each other, but for a tool that does fuck-all and is produced by a multinational company it is inexcusable.
    2. The UI is a classic 'looks shiny, works like crap' with a myriad of 10

    • Take a look at the Windows event log, you should have a section where the driver puts events caused by .NET. Each time I open the CCC (I plan to test the Crimson today) I see dozens and dozens of error warnings suggesting how crap and poorly programmed is the CCC. I do not understand how AMD can not find better developers to do something as important as a device driver.
      • Corretion: Where the driver puts events caused by CCC (On reading them becomes clear that the driver or at least the interface is done in .NET)
        • According to the article it's written in Qt. Maybe it's just the legacy part that's done in .NET

  • by ledow ( 319597 )

    What with this, nVidia Shield (rubbish but still in the market) and Steamboxes being virtually all nVidia, I can't help but carry on doing what I've done for many years now.

    ATI for 2D graphics on servers, if it's pre-integrated.
    Intel for 2D graphics for clients, if it's pre-integrated.

    Everything else (i.e. the whole point of having a 3D graphics card) has to be nVidia.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 25, 2015 @12:56PM (#51002785)

    AMD gets knocked for their drivers, but you have to wonder how much is due to intervention from the competition? I still remember Unreal Tournament 2003 would start the game with a character breaking through an nVidia logo. If games are optimized for nVidia hardware, can we really tell if performance of AMD is that much worse? Is there a test that is guaranteed not to favor any card?

The number of UNIX installations has grown to 10, with more expected. -- The Unix Programmer's Manual, 2nd Edition, June 1972