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"NVIDIA is the Single Worst Company We've Ever Dealt With:" Linus Torvalds

What could have been Linus' thought-process?

  • His comment is backed by reason.

    Votes: 52 62.7%
  • His comment is backed by emotion.

    Votes: 31 37.3%

  • Total voters
    83

btarunr

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#1
Linux creator and Millennium Technology Prize laureate Linus Torvalds called NVIDIA the "single worst company" he and his associates dealt with. Torvalds made these comments in an interactive session with students, developers, and entrepreneurs, at the Aalto Center for Entrepreneurship in Otaniemi, Finland. The session was conducted in English.

Responding to a question by one of his audience complaining how NVIDIA was extremely stubborn in sharing technologies such as Optimus (dynamic switching between integrated and discrete GPUs) with the Linux community, and seeking his comments on the matter, Torvalds called NVIDIA "one of the worst trouble spots [they've] had with hardware manufacturers." He continued "...and that is really sad [for NVIDIA], because NVIDIA tries to sell a lot of chips into the Android market." With this comment, Torvalds reminded NVIDIA that its business with Linux isn't confined to client computing platforms such as PCs, but also the Android-driven portable computing market (of smartphones and tablets), which is growing at a breakneck pace.

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btarunr

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#3
I hope this wont make nvidia remove Linux support. :/
Linux (as Android), driven by Tegra, could soon become a bigger revenue source than PC graphics for NVIDIA. So I don't think it will do anything stupid.
 
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#5
wow he's so mature... :rolleyes:
 
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#6
It takes a lot of frustration for a professional to react like this in public, looks like Nvidia did piss him badly.
 
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#7
It takes a lot of frustration for a professional to react like this in public, looks like Nvidia did piss him badly.
stallman ate crud off his toe and he's "one of them"....
 

zlobster

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#8
This is the real world, not a playground. Torvalds does not represent Linux as a whole.
Nope, just a major figure in the kernel development...

And hats off, for his bold statement!:nutkick: It was about time s.o. put nvidia on the ground.:shadedshu
 
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#9
I think being emotional and making statements like that in public is bad for business. If you are amongst your friends and not having a camera directly on you its fine but not on record. He has nothing to gain from doing that and only something to lose. It is always best to think of what you say and how it effects your business than just going with feelings. I hope it doesn't negatively affect the linux community and their relations with Nvidia. Good luck getting as much help from AMD as you did from Nvidia over the years. :(
 
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#10
Well if you look at nVidia's track record and business deals over the years...yeah they aren't that super. May make darn good GPUs but some bonehead stuff elsewhere. Course so was 3Dfx but their management just finally tipped the scale. nVidia has been at that tipping point before but hasn't fallen over yet. Course they are much bigger company than 3Dfx was.
 
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#11
I think being emotional and making statements like that in public is bad for business. If you are amongst your friends and not having a camera directly on you its fine but not on record. He has nothing to gain from doing that and only something to lose. It is always best to think of what you say and how it effects your business than just going with feelings. I hope it doesn't negatively affect the linux community and their relations with Nvidia. Good luck getting as much help from AMD as you did from Nvidia over the years. :(
What an absolute load of nonsense. You clearly do NOT know the open community and the behaviour of companies it has to tolerate. Linus Torvalds does NOT run a business. He is a project leader for the Linux Kernel. He actually gets paid by other companies in terms of salary and shares. He doesn't lose anything by telling Nvidia to go f**k themselves.

(1) Nvidia has always been difficult. We've had to tolerate them in order to use their hardware. They simply refuse to work with the community. They expect things done their way, under their development control. We've had to reverse engineer drivers to make our own open drivers. See Nouveau project.
=> http://nouveau.freedesktop.org/wiki/
(The goal is to give out-of-the-box experience for the end-user. Nvidia wants no part in it.)

The sad part is, they would sell more hardware if they just take part in the open source process. (See below for AMD and Intel).

(2) VIA is similar. Except they announce their ambitions, but end up doing nothing because they don't have the money or engineering manpower to do anything. It's a a shame, because VIA has a potential market here. (Linux enthusiasts using their embedded boards to DIY projects. It's free advertising for their hardware.)

(3) Both AMD and Intel know there's hardware sales to be made by supporting Linux in a pro-active manner. AMD Graphics and Intel Open Source Centre (China) have employed full time people to actively take part and develop open source drivers for their respective hardware. AMD releases code samples and technical documentation. Intel outright contributes to things by actively trying to stabilise their Sandy and Ivy Bridge IGP open driver code. There's already initialisation code for the 2013 Haswell chip.

AMD's Open Source Zone
=> http://developer.amd.com/zones/opensource/Pages/default.aspx

Linux Graphics Drivers from Intel
=> http://intellinuxgraphics.org/
Open Source at Intel
=> http://software.intel.com/sites/oss/

(4) Hewlett Packard is also another fantastic open source player. You will never have an issue with HP printer, scanner, fax device under Linux; because they pro-actively develop, update, and maintain their drivers.

HP Linux Imaging and Printing
=> http://hplipopensource.com/hplip-web/index.html


(5) Even Microsoft makes contributions to make sure their Hyper-V solution works with Linux. (Open source kernel drivers to support Hyper-V paravirtualization).


...In the end, its come to a point where one just ignores companies that don't support Linux. That's unfortunate, because there is money to be made if they provide open driver support for their hardware! (I'm typing this on an Intel "Sandy Bridge" notebook with Linux installed.)
 
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#12
I always thought nvidia was operating so questionable

ATI seemed more friendly when it was not with AMD
 
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#13
If you think NVIDIA+linux could be bad... oh just wait to try AMD+linux...
 

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#14
Kind of ironic when in the past, ATi is considered a bad match for Linux (and yes it was, experienced one many distro simply not booting because of ATi myself).

It seem to got better these days.
 

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#15
If you think NVIDIA+linux could be bad... oh just wait to try AMD+linux...
What's the issue specifically? I was running Ubuntu on an AMD system and didn't have any problems... other than my initial Linux n00biness.
 
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#16
What's the issue specifically? I was running Ubuntu on an AMD system and didn't have any problems... other than my initial Linux n00biness.
Come on, you know us, we read few threads where few people have faced issues and form a mindset, needless to say we stick with it and misguide other people as well. The lack of protectiveness to check the issue on our is own always missing, so yes, you can ignore us. /sarcasm... (i feel silly giving it a sarcasm tag even :shadedshu )


EDIT: Ubuntu noob user here, facing no issues what's so ever on AMD HD 5770 with FX-8120
 

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#17
AMD's linux drivers are pretty solid. They may not be as mature as nvidia's but they still work just fine on the most popular hardware configurations.

back on topic, this is Linus's personality. nobody should be surprised he did this.
 
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#18
What Linus is bitching about is that nVIDIA refuses to release their drivers as open source. Instead of doing this, they release their drivers as a binary blob. The upside of this? Their drivers don't suck, as opposed to the open-source AMD drivers, which do.

Torvalds needs to shut the fuck up and realise that nVIDIA cares about their customers, and that means giving said customers a binary driver that WORKS and not an open-source POS that doesn't. 99% of people who use nVIDIA devices under Linux (i.e. Android) don't give a shit whether the driver is open-source or not, they want something that doesn't break or have to be updated every week. And that's what nVIDIA delivers, and has always delivered: quality.
 

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#19
Come on, you know us, we read few threads where few people have faced issues and form a mindset, needless to say we stick with it and misguide other people as well. The lack of protectiveness to check the issue on our is own always missing, so yes, you can ignore us. /sarcasm... (i feel silly giving it a sarcasm tag even :shadedshu )


EDIT: Ubuntu noob user here, facing no issues what's so ever on AMD HD 5770 with FX-8120
It was simply horrid back in the days (2007-2009), it's not usual for users to not be able to even boot the damn live cd/dvd.

And btw, the same can be said to you, just because you don't have problem doesn't mean there aren't any countless other who do (not to mention Linux doesn't automatically mean Ubuntu). Or did you think all those threads was made by a bot?
 

Fourstaff

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#20
What Linus is bitching about is that nVIDIA refuses to release their drivers as open source. Instead of doing this, they release their drivers as a binary blob. The upside of this? Their drivers don't suck, as opposed to the open-source AMD drivers, which do.

Torvalds needs to shut the fuck up and realise that nVIDIA cares about their customers, and that means giving said customers a binary driver that WORKS and not an open-source POS that doesn't. 99% of people who use nVIDIA devices under Linux (i.e. Android) don't give a shit whether the driver is open-source or not, they want something that doesn't break or have to be updated every week. And that's what nVIDIA delivers, and has always delivered: quality.
You are missing the point here. Nvidia might be an angel to everyone else, but as long as they don't help Linux they will be regarded as absolute filth, lower than scum by the Linux community. It doesn't take much to release their code to the public and annotate a bit. That will hardly make their drivers suck, and if anything the open community will improve on their code.

Its also worth noting that I am still waiting for my compensation for the Nvidia mobile graphics problem. I have had more problems with my 2 Nvidia cards than all my AMD/ATI stuff from Rage. Not sure about the rest, but Nvidia sure have lots of QUALITY when it comes to my experience.
 

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#21
Torvalds is right. The Linux market represents extra sales for nvidia, so isn't it strange that they won't support it properly? While it's around 1% of the total market, that's still a lot of sales and they could help grow that market, too. Many other major product vendors are strangely reluctant to support Linux too. Now, isn't that strange?

I reckon the only reason that Linux still hasn't gone mainstream is because of the continuing driver issues. Without that crucial piece of software between the OS and the hardware (any hardware, not just graphics) the OS is useless. At the most, it's fit only for a technology demo.

Every hardware manufacturer writes drivers for Windows, but you have to be lucky to find a Linux version and when they do, they often don't work properly and don't have all the features of their Windows counterparts.

You get these homebrew efforts at reverse engineering a driver, but this approach is fatally flawed and they tend not to work too well at all - a manufacture provided driver is critical for success.

I really suspect the hand of Microsoft in all this, making backroom deals with the major manufacturers to stunt Linux driver development by restricting driver availability, among possibly other things. Yeah, exactly, go prove it. :rolleyes:
 
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#22
Well, at least you was able to use linux with Nvidia, so I don't really get whats his problem. Blaming a whole company just because some subpar performance from one of the departments is simply immature.

The nature of the market is changed a lot (consoles will go with AMD, and they also slowly eating up the IGP market on the desktops with a big share of Intel).
So, besides the desktop discrete battle, their only option now is to be successful with ARM and Apple, because those are the segments where they can shell a lot of chips.

I also agree with qubit... it's a really Microsoft-ish to handle things this way. (it's the same story how they slowing down the progression of the graphics in PC games for years with secret agreements, just to keep their console in the battle, or the things they did (or attempted to do) with the other browsers to make IE more successful, etc). They do not care about the development of computer science on the planet if they are not involved, and they are willing to slow down and harm anything which only makes money for others.

But I understand them tbh, because you can't except the alpha male to be nice with the competition, predators doesn't work that way:)
 
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#23
What Linus is bitching about is that nVIDIA refuses to release their drivers as open source. Instead of doing this, they release their drivers as a binary blob. The upside of this? Their drivers don't suck, as opposed to the open-source AMD drivers, which do.

Torvalds needs to shut the fuck up and realise that nVIDIA cares about their customers, and that means giving said customers a binary driver that WORKS and not an open-source POS that doesn't. 99% of people who use nVIDIA devices under Linux (i.e. Android) don't give a shit whether the driver is open-source or not, they want something that doesn't break or have to be updated every week. And that's what nVIDIA delivers, and has always delivered: quality.
This is a fanboy statement if i've ever seen one :laugh: :rolleyes:
 

qubit

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#24
What Linus is bitching about is that nVIDIA refuses to release their drivers as open source. Instead of doing this, they release their drivers as a binary blob. The upside of this? Their drivers don't suck, as opposed to the open-source AMD drivers, which do.

Torvalds needs to shut the fuck up and realise that nVIDIA cares about their customers, and that means giving said customers a binary driver that WORKS and not an open-source POS that doesn't. 99% of people who use nVIDIA devices under Linux (i.e. Android) don't give a shit whether the driver is open-source or not, they want something that doesn't break or have to be updated every week. And that's what nVIDIA delivers, and has always delivered: quality.
This is a fanboy statement if i've ever seen one :laugh: :rolleyes:
Agreed, creepingdeath. Total fanboi.

Since when does the GPL, which Linux is licenced under, state that all software running on Linux must be open source too? What a load of tosh. Linux applications and drivers can be as closed-source as you like and even include obnoxious DRM schemes such as Ubisoft's always-on DRM and product activation. Linux users are simply not dumb enough to buy into this crap, that's all.
 

btarunr

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#25
What Linus is bitching about is that nVIDIA refuses to release their drivers as open source. Instead of doing this, they release their drivers as a binary blob. The upside of this? Their drivers don't suck, as opposed to the open-source AMD drivers, which do.
No, Linus is angry that the feature set isn't consistent between Windows and Linux. DirectX really is the only difference between the two platforms (which nobody can do anything about). There's no reason why NVIDIA Optimus, 3D Vision Surround, CUDA, or even PhysX don't work (/well) on Linux, and that has nothing to do with the driver being open-source or proprietary. NVIDIA at first did not release Optimus support for Linux, and didn't support them in their efforts to somehow get it to work with whatever open resources are available. That's where NVIDIA deserved the f***-you. There are plenty of proprietary Linux drivers by other hardware vendors that give end-users their hardware's advertised feature-sets.

Advocating Linux doesn't necessarily make one an open-source purist. At least not in case of someone concerned with its propagation (Torvalds). There's plenty of proprietary software (applications and drivers) for Linux.
 
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