Bug 8898 - 2D rendering is slow but 3D is fine on radeon driver
Summary: 2D rendering is slow but 3D is fine on radeon driver
Alias: None
Product: xorg
Classification: Unclassified
Component: Driver/Radeon (show other bugs)
Version: 7.1 (2006.05)
Hardware: x86 (IA32) Linux (All)
: high normal
Assignee: xf86-video-ati maintainers
QA Contact: Xorg Project Team
Depends on:
Reported: 2006-11-05 08:57 UTC by Ben Hodgetts
Modified: 2018-06-12 19:10 UTC (History)
3 users (show)

See Also:
i915 platform:
i915 features:

XOrg Log File. (47.20 KB, text/plain)
2007-05-15 08:22 UTC, Ben Hodgetts
no flags Details
Xorg log (76.86 KB, text/plain)
2009-10-19 08:32 UTC, Sebastian Redl
no flags Details
Xorg conf (1.93 KB, text/plain)
2009-10-19 08:34 UTC, Sebastian Redl
no flags Details

Description Ben Hodgetts 2006-11-05 08:57:46 UTC
I am currently using the XOrg 'radeon' driver with DRI and such all set up but
rendering with it is quite slow and tends to be very CPU intensive. There is
normally a stall with high CPU usage before windows are redrawn when bringing
things to front, other issues are such as maximising a gnome-terminal. If you do
this then try and switch to another tab then it will stall on 100% CPU usage for
3 seconds or so, then the tab itself will switch and then another second later
the terminal will switch. Also scrolling on pages of anything other than plain
text in Firefox will be slow (not quite as bad as the VESA driver, but it's

Oddly enough 3D performance is good and it gets nearly 3000fps on GLXGears (and
glxinfo says Direct Rendering is on, which is obvious from that speed). The Xorg
log doesn't show any issues that I can see. Someone else has mentioned they are
having this same issue though so it is either that the driver isn't that good in
2D or there is a bug slowing it down.

This is using a Radeon Mobility 9000 on Gentoo. Configs and logs available on
Comment 1 Michel Dänzer 2006-11-12 05:08:42 UTC
If this still happens with current git (ati-6.6-branch or master), please attach
(as opposed to paste) full X config and log files.
Comment 2 Michel Dänzer 2007-05-15 08:12:38 UTC
Requested information not provided in half a year. Feel free to reopen with the needed information.
Comment 3 Ben Hodgetts 2007-05-15 08:22:16 UTC
Created attachment 9972 [details]
XOrg Log File.

Whoops, sorry, I don't think I ever got the notification of the request and forgot all about this. The issue still stands although the laptop is being replaced this week.

I currently don't have an xorg.conf (XOrg is just running with auto-detected defaults which works just as well as all the previous configurations I've been through with an actual xorg.conf file).

XOrg.0.log attached.
Comment 4 Ben Hodgetts 2007-05-15 08:23:46 UTC
Re-opening now that info is attached. Just shout if you need any other details (fyi I did also try the GIT version a month or two back with no noticeable improvements).
Comment 5 Michel Dänzer 2007-05-15 08:42:06 UTC
The last line of the log file indicates you're using a GLX compositing manager such as compiz or beryl. Is that correct? If so, this is probably a duplicate of bug 8476.
Comment 6 Ben Hodgetts 2007-05-15 08:55:36 UTC
Ah, ignore that. I am RIGHT NOW, but wasn't before. The reason I'm using it now is it actually seems to speed things up slightly (I assume because it's using the 3D engine to do some of the tasks now instead). The issue is present with or without compositing.
Comment 7 Michel Dänzer 2007-05-15 15:58:46 UTC
(In reply to comment #6)
> The issue is present with or without compositing.

Even before starting a GLX compositing manager for the first time? That hack used by your distribution effectively mostly disables 2D acceleration for the rest of the session when doing that (to make compositing usable with the deficiencies of XAA).
Comment 8 Ben Hodgetts 2007-05-15 16:03:37 UTC
Yes, even before that. This distro has been through Gentoo, Debian and Ubuntu and the poor 2D performance has been present throughout.
Comment 9 Michel Dänzer 2007-05-15 16:08:16 UTC
Well, as there are no obvious problems in the log file, I'm not sure what to suggest except maybe to try xserver 1.3 with EXA and AccelDFS. For comparison, what kind of setup did you get adeuqate 2D performance with?
Comment 10 Ben Hodgetts 2007-05-15 16:35:52 UTC
My desktop is the only other thing I have to compare it to and the desktop is an Athlon64 X2 3800+ with an nVidia GeForce 7900GTO.
Comment 11 Dr. Tilmann Bubeck 2007-05-15 22:31:29 UTC
I can confirm the exact same problem as mentioned in the first entry. 

I normally use a xinerama setup with two graphics card (ATI Radeon+Nvidia). The problem arises in Xinerama mode and also if I use a single head setup with ATI. It has not yet shown, when using a single mode setup with "nv". I have never used "compiz" or any other 3d hack. I'm not interested in 3d performance but 2d.

This system runs dual boot of "Fedora 4" and "Fedora 7test4". FC4 work flawlessly.

More information can be found at 

as I'm not sure where to post this bug. Probably here is the better place?

Comment 12 Sebastian Redl 2009-10-19 08:30:52 UTC
This sounds exactly like the problem I'm experiencing on my system. Kubuntu 9.10 pre-release, 1.6.4-2ubuntu3 xserver, driver reports:
(II) RADEON(0): Built from git commit 7968e1fb89f6b59d1654df48249bf4b81990c008
EXA is enabled and claims to be active, same for DRI.

The video card reports itself as
ATI Technologies Inc RV516 [Radeon X1300/X1550 Series]
This is a cheap 256MB X1550 AGP card. Not particularly reliable.

The system is an Athlon64 2GHz, 3GB RAM, running a 64-bit kernel and userland.

While glxgears chugs along with 11000 frames every 5 seconds, 2d rendering is absurdly slow, and the Xorg process eats up all the CPU. Most affected seems to be Thunderbird, which takes up to four seconds just to repaint after being covered.

I'll attach the conf and log in a moment. 
Comment 13 Sebastian Redl 2009-10-19 08:32:31 UTC
Created attachment 30559 [details]
Xorg log
Comment 14 Sebastian Redl 2009-10-19 08:34:17 UTC
Created attachment 30560 [details]
Xorg conf
Comment 15 Peter Schwindt 2010-09-17 03:59:14 UTC
I'm having the same problem (glxgears running at about 840 fps), but sometimes redrawing hangs when I switch desktops.

Hardware is a RV630 (Radeon HD 2600), X is 1:6.13.1-2 on AMD64. If needed, I can supply xorg.conf and Xorg.log
Comment 16 Michel Dänzer 2010-09-17 05:45:34 UTC
(In reply to comment #15)
> I'm having the same problem [...]

(In reply to comment #12)
> This sounds exactly like the problem I'm experiencing on my system. [...]

Peter and Sebastian, it's not clear that your problems are the same as the one reported here originally, as your setups are quite different and a lot of time passed in the meantime. Please file your own reports each with the full Xorg.0.log and dmesg output (assuming you're running with KMS enabled). As you mention high CPU usage, profiles obtained with sysprof or oprofile might be interesting as well.
Comment 17 Adam Jackson 2018-06-12 19:10:47 UTC
Mass closure: This bug has been untouched for more than six years, and is not
obviously still valid. Please reopen this bug or file a new report if you continue to experience issues with current releases.

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