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Intel® Embedded Media and Graphics Driver FAQ


1.  Can I get the source code for the Linux* driver?


Yes and no. The complete source for the driver is not available. However, we do provide the entire kernel component of the Linux* driver in source format under the open source GNU General Public License, v2 (http://www.gnu.org/licenses/old-licenses/gpl-2.0.html). This kernel code includes the full hardware abstraction layer (HAL) used for programming the display adapter and performing operations such as modesetting and memory management. This kernel code can be found inside the IEMGD_HEAD_LINUX/{linux version}/driver/emgd_drm.tgz archive of the installation package generated by CED.


Unfortunately, the source for the userspace part of the Linux* driver, including the X driver and 3D stack implementation, is not available. While we understand the importance that the Linux community places on open drivers, much of our userspace driver code derives from technology licensed from third parties that Intel is not legally permitted to distribute in source code format. With ntel® Embedded Media and Graphics Driver (Intel® EMGD) we have instead focused on opening the source for the parts of our driver that we legally can. Moving our HAL implementation into the kernel for Intel® EMGD is a large step forward compared to our Intel® Embedded Graphics Drivers (Intel® EGD) Linux driver releases (Intel EGD implemented the HAL in closed-source userspace code).


2.  What are some of the high-level differences between the Intel® open source Linux* graphics driver and Intel EMGD?


Linux* Embedded Graphics Drivers from Intel have several differences from the open source Linux graphics driver:


  • Intel EMGD supports hardware not covered by the open source driver: Intel® System Controller Hub US15W chipset and Intel® Atom™ processor E6xx series.


  • Intel EMGD provides mature support out of the box for embedded 3D API’s (OpenGL-ES 1.1 and 2.0, and OpenVG 1.1) and also provides similar desktop OpenGL 2.1 support to the open source drivers.


  • Customers who use both Windows* and Linux can use a single configuration tool (CED) to quickly generate configuration setups for both operating systems. Intel EMGD releases are supported by Intel through the Questions and Answer Database (QUAD) for an extended life cycle.


3.  What are the currently supported Linux* distribution with Intel® EMGD 1.16?


The Intel Embedded Media and Graphics Driver and video BIOS support the following Linux operating systems and APIs:


  • Fedora 14 (Timesys Fedora Remix* image), kernel version 2.6.35, Xorg 1.9, Libva 1.0.12, Mesa 7.9. The source is distributed by Timesys.
  • MeeGo* IVI 1.2, kernel version 2.6.37, Xorg 1.9, Libva 1.0.12, Mesa 7.9


For further information, download the user guide and feature matrix.



4.  Now that I have installed Linux and Intel EMGD, how do I clone the HDD before installing other software and applications?


Download or request the white paper called Cloning Linux* Drives Using MondoArchive. It's available as document number 449300 via the Intel® Business Portal.


5.  What’s a good benchmark test for OpenGL* on Linux?


To verify that OpenGL* is working in general, ‘glxgears’ is often used as a quick sanity test since it comes pre-installed by most Linux* distributions. Unfortunately, despite displaying a frames per second score, glxgears is actually a very poor tool to use as a benchmark. The 3D load generated by glxgears is so trivial that a large portion of the execution time is spent simply flipping back and forth between the back buffer and the front buffer. Thus the fps presented by glxgears is more an indication of how quickly you can switch between buffers, rather than the true 3D performance of the hardware. Instead, most of the Linux community relies on applications that perform real-world 3D rendering. A set of recommended apps that can be used for testing (primarily game demos) and instructions on how to put them into “benchmark mode” is available on the freedesktop.org web site here: http://dri.freedesktop.org/wiki/Benchmarking