AMD Drops Vulkan Driver Support for Polaris and Vega on Linux: A Blow to Open-Source Gaming

October 25, 2023 by our News Team

AMD has officially discontinued support for the RX 500 and Vega series in their AMDVLK open source driver on Linux, suggesting that future drivers for these graphics cards may lack game optimizations and support for new software on Windows as well.

  • AMD still supports the Radeon RX 590
  • NVIDIA continues to support its Maxwell architecture dating back to February 2014
  • AMDVLK open source driver on Linux is still supported

Linux AMDVLK drivers have bid farewell to the RX 500 and Vega series, leaving gamers using AMD RX Vega and RX 500 Graphics Cards uncertain about future driver support. These cards were moved to a separate package in the Windows driver release back in September, and despite subsequent updates, drivers for Polaris and Vega have remained unchanged. AMD has now officially confirmed that support for these architectures has been discontinued in their AMDVLK open source driver on Linux. While there has been no explicit announcement regarding Windows support, the lack of updates for these graphics cards over the past month suggests that future drivers may lack game optimizations and support for new software. It is worth noting that AMD still supports the Radeon RX 590, but even this card, released in November 2018, is no longer receiving updates. In comparison, nVidia continues to support its Maxwell architecture dating back to February 2014.

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Background Information

About AMD: AMD, a large player in the semiconductor industry is known for its powerful processors and graphic solutions, AMD has consistently pushed the boundaries of performance, efficiency, and user experience. With a customer-centric approach, the company has cultivated a reputation for delivering high-performance solutions that cater to the needs of gamers, professionals, and general users. AMD's Ryzen series of processors have redefined the landscape of desktop and laptop computing, offering impressive multi-core performance and competitive pricing that has challenged the dominance of its competitors. Complementing its processor expertise, AMD's Radeon graphics cards have also earned accolades for their efficiency and exceptional graphical capabilities, making them a favored choice among gamers and content creators. The company's commitment to innovation and technology continues to shape the client computing landscape, providing users with powerful tools to fuel their digital endeavors.

AMD website  AMD LinkedIn

About nVidia: NVIDIA has firmly established itself as a leader in the realm of client computing, continuously pushing the boundaries of innovation in graphics and AI technologies. With a deep commitment to enhancing user experiences, NVIDIA's client computing business focuses on delivering solutions that power everything from gaming and creative workloads to enterprise applications. for its GeForce graphics cards, the company has redefined high-performance gaming, setting industry standards for realistic visuals, fluid frame rates, and immersive experiences. Complementing its gaming expertise, NVIDIA's Quadro and NVIDIA RTX graphics cards cater to professionals in design, content creation, and scientific fields, enabling real-time ray tracing and AI-driven workflows that elevate productivity and creativity to unprecedented heights. By seamlessly integrating graphics, AI, and software, NVIDIA continues to shape the landscape of client computing, fostering innovation and immersive interactions in a rapidly evolving digital world.

nVidia website  nVidia LinkedIn

Technology Explained

Radeon: AMD Radeon, a product line by Advanced Micro Devices (AMD), consists of graphics processing units (GPUs) recognized for their strong performance in gaming, content creation, and professional applications. Powered by innovative technologies like the RDNA architecture, Radeon GPUs deliver efficient and powerful graphics processing. The brand also supports features like FreeSync, enhancing visual fluidity and reducing screen tearing during gaming. Moreover, AMD Radeon GPUs embrace real-time ray tracing for heightened realism in lighting and reflections. With a balance between price and performance, Radeon competes with NVIDIA's GeForce graphics cards and remains a popular choice for a wide range of users.

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