First Panfrost enabled desktop builds


Igor
 Share

4 4

Recommended Posts

After several months of development, we finally bring desktop development to the daily driver state. Our desktop builds follow KISS philosophy. They are build around proven technology, we are not touching things that are done well. Just fixing things here and there and removing most / hopefully all bloatware that is added upstream. We are preparing a wide selection of desktop variants

 

 

while we will officially only support a few of them but anyone is welcome to join and tweak / support its desktop of choice. We will support you in best possible manner! And this way things starts the voyage to become officially supported one day. Only if you join. We can't take more load.

 

Screenshot 2021-03-04 11:51:14.png   Screenshot 2021-03-04 11:50:00.png  Screenshot 2021-03-04 11:49:47.png   


We support XFCE since early days and that will remain primary desktop since it represent a best combination between functionality, speed and beauty. Second desktop, which we are adding now is Gnome because its clean and most stable among advanced / bulky desktops. It can ran fairly smooth as low as on Allwinner H5 / 1Gb memory, while it runs very well on some RK3399 hardware. In both cases it uses open source 3D acceleration - Lima and Panfrost. New desktop option will be added gradually, but for now:

Orange pi 4: Budgie, Gnome, Cinnamon, Gnome, Mate
https://www.armbian.com/orange-pi-4/

 

Pinebook PRO: Gnome
https://www.armbian.com/pinebook-pro/

 

Nanopi T4: Budgie, Gnome, Cinnamon, Gnome, Mate
https://www.armbian.com/nanopc-t4/

 

Nanopi M4V2: Budgie, Gnome, Cinnamon, Gnome, Mate
https://www.armbian.com/nanopi-m4-v2/

 

What about others?

- ASAP. Those are semi manual builds, some are manually tested and it takes a lot of time. On top of that we are having some infrastructure troubles ATM ...

- we still need to fix few minor bugs, before we put on stamp as "supported" even those builds are IMO generally in a better shape then other images on the market

- you can help by testing and enabling specific builds by sending a PR to this file. https://github.com/armbian/build/blob/master/config/targets.conf It will help to get things up faster.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Armbian is a community driven open source project. Do you like to contribute your code?

Thanks to everyone who have been working on this!  :beer:

 

I think XFCE and Gnome are good initial choices!

 

XFCE is my go to when installing for other people, and was my own daily driver for some time.  Just the right balance of light weight while not dumbing it down too much.

 

I have not been a huge fan of some of Gnome choices in the past (v3 in particular) however recently I been reading up again on GNU/Linux phone scene (Librem 5 and PinePhone, the latter I actually purchased recently) and all the development that Purism are doing on the phosh library is being upstreamed into Gnome.  So I guess this will allow some interesting possibilities going forward for Armbian on smaller screens, should a phone/tablet interface be preferred to regular desktop for whatever reason.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Awesome image! I've encountered a really strange issue however - I am unable to change the background or theme in settings. Perhaps other settings are affected too - haven't checked.

edit: Ah, perhaps I also ought to specify this is on the GNOME version of the image

Link to post
Share on other sites

Great news. I guess it is decided for me what'll be my next video. I just finished a video about Manjaro on RPi4. Many people choose that just because it looked better out of the box.
Good I just bought a bunch of sd-cards.
I never tried Cinnamon and Budgie to my knowledge. I'm curious.

Link to post
Share on other sites

4 minutes ago, NicoD said:

I never tried Cinnamon and Budgie to my knowledge. I'm curious.


Cinnamon is more on the conservative side. For elderly people :D (that DE is my daily driver). Budgie for visually impaired since there are large icons OOB. Best looking is DDE, which is sadly not in a good enough state to be shipped ...

 

6 minutes ago, NicoD said:

I just finished a video about Manjaro on RPi4. Many people choose that just because it looked better out of the box.

 

Looked better is subjective. I can agree their UI is well polished. After all this is all what most of the distros do - polish their appearance to sell. But I don't like Saint Patrick's day 356 days in a year :lol: Also whenever I tried how is Manjaro doing, it doesn't boot or doesn't survive first run. Ofc I don't try it on mainstream devices which might even work to some degree with a kernel from the trunk.

Link to post
Share on other sites

18 minutes ago, Igor said:

Looked better is subjective.

Indeed. Many think the DE and look are the main thing in an OS. Like many think Ubuntu is Unity. While there are so many flavors, and you can make it look how you want it to.
 

 

21 minutes ago, Igor said:

Also whenever I tried how is Manjaro doing, it doesn't boot or doesn't survive first run. Ofc I don't try it on mainstream devices which might even work to some degree with a kernel from the trunk.

It has become better. I also used to try it and many things didn't work, so I had never made a video about it before. But now mainline is getting smoothed out, Manjaro ARM is improving too. Manjaro does benefit a lot from the work done by Armbian. And they also help out a lot in the community. Even on armbian problems on other forums I often see them helping out. (khadas, radxa...)
And since Armbian doesn't support the RPi4, Manjaro is a good choice for it. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

I am working to figure out the dde issue if i can fix 15.xfor unbuntu 20.04 I will get it out the new deepin 20 will come out when they finish porting pkgs for hirsute. I will put in some time this week to see what I can do with dde and give feed back

 

Please do us a big favor. make a check list of whats working and whats not working. but keep it pointed at the issue .

 

Like:

issue 1:press icon nothing launches. (icon name ) > so that then we can review the issue.

 

make a liost after 2 to 3 days of testing. Thaanks alot..

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

A few other issues I encountered when testing on the Pinebook Pro:

1) Natural scrolling setting doesn't work

2) WiFi doesn't come back up after suspend. Restarting network-manager brings it back up.

3) Video out via USB-C doesn't appear to work on any of my docks

 

One other thing I noticed: in settings 'About' panel, under graphics, it doesn't list Mali T-860 (Panfrost) but rather Unknown

Link to post
Share on other sites

6 hours ago, lukasz said:

A few other issues I encountered when testing on the Pinebook Pro:

1) Natural scrolling setting doesn't work

2) WiFi doesn't come back up after suspend. Restarting network-manager brings it back up.

3) Video out via USB-C doesn't appear to work on any of my docks

 

One other thing I noticed: in settings 'About' panel, under graphics, it doesn't list Mali T-860 (Panfrost) but rather Unknown

@lukasz  are you running on X11

For me ,  using self built hirsute/gnome (as opposed to just downloading)  ,  using gnome on Wayland shows proper " mali T860 (Panfrost)"  where gnome on Xorg shows " unknown,  but in in either case glxinfo  extended renderer section shows panfrost is used.  Perhaps there is a bug in the settings program?  

Desktop sort of works for me on my 4k monitor (usbc dock-hdmi connection--same as on other distributions--the  geometry is wrong and that also effects the display on the pinebook itself,  but it has worked that way on any distribution I have tried)  Natural scrolling setting seems to work on Wayland...

Link to post
Share on other sites

3 hours ago, belfastraven said:

@lukasz  are you running on X11

For me ,  using self built hirsute/gnome (as opposed to just downloading)  ,  using gnome on Wayland shows proper " mali T860 (Panfrost)"  where gnome on Xorg shows " unknown,  but in in either case glxinfo  extended renderer section shows panfrost is used.  Perhaps there is a bug in the settings program?  

Desktop sort of works for me on my 4k monitor (usbc dock-hdmi connection--same as on other distributions--the  geometry is wrong and that also effects the display on the pinebook itself,  but it has worked that way on any distribution I have tried)  Natural scrolling setting seems to work on Wayland...

 

Strange, I fetched the GNOME OS image, figured they all come with GPU accelerated desktops now? Stable branch, daily build with GNOME desktop from yesterday.

Link to post
Share on other sites

The GPU accelerated trend with the SBC community will depend on the Panfrost driver development. After some testing on current version of Mesa (20.2.6) on Armbian, only the Midgard series (Mali-T###) will work. Mali-G30, Mali-G50 and Mali-G70 series (Bifrost) is not included in Mesa (20.2.6) without tweeking. At the current time the Mesa project version 21.1, the Panfrost driver is unstable/broken and several commits behind the target branch (master).

 

Might be worth waiting until the official release is available!

Link to post
Share on other sites

22 hours ago, lukasz said:

 

Strange, I fetched the GNOME OS image, figured they all come with GPU accelerated desktops now? Stable branch, daily build with GNOME desktop from yesterday.

@lukaszDid you try running glxinfo?  I was just trying to indicate that there seems to be a difference in gnome settings in terms of what is reported for X rather than Wayland,  but in both cases glxinfo shows panfrost as the extended renderer.   

Link to post
Share on other sites

Wow, this a big success for Armbian. Kudos to everyone involved. ;) Wonder can H3 run MATE desktop since it's at pair or maybe even lighter than Xfce regarding resource consumption. Gnome and Budgie are probably to heavy for it.

Link to post
Share on other sites

On 3/6/2021 at 10:22 PM, belfastraven said:

@lukaszDid you try running glxinfo?  I was just trying to indicate that there seems to be a difference in gnome settings in terms of what is reported for X rather than Wayland,  but in both cases glxinfo shows panfrost as the extended renderer.   

 

Yep, I did. And sure enough, it reports Panfrost. And KODI as well as other programs also report Panfrost. So at this point the only thing I'm unsure about is whether the desktop itself is accelerated or not.

Link to post
Share on other sites

@Igor

run glmark2 on default compositor mode (auto is GLX)

we get glmark results 5-6 times lower than on xpresent mode.

 

to test it:

xfwm4 --vblank=xpresent --replace

 

to replace it by default (this will work after reboot)

xfconf-query -c xfwm4 -p /general/vblank_mode -t string -s "xpresent" --create

 

rerun glmark2... you will see the differences. 

at this point it's quite ridiculous that xfce4 compositor defaults to GLX... mesa devs hate it... his drivers too.  

 

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

I am running the latest Armbian 21.02.3 on two NanoPCT4s.

Thanks to everyone for this. I didnt think I would see this performance on this device.

But here it is and I see Armbian is getting good notice for this.

I dont know how they did it but these devices are running very well.

I am a little tired this week so I dont have any technical details.

I want to just ramble (opinionate) on how nice this is and what I like about it.

I am running standard Focal Gnome Desktop from Armbian Download.

I just disable the pwm-fan module and run hot.

As long as I dont make -j6 I can avoid meltdowns.

I run Firefox and Microsoft VSCode. I run a complex desktop and my

standard install involves a day of burnin compilation.

I can run Firefox videos and Microsoft Code.

By the way Code can now be downloaded direct from Microsoft.

I run a lot of Python and JavaScript and C++ [avoid Java and C# at the moment

but really I dont have much time considering I do more and more C/C++]

and use Python as scripting language for C. I compile Sage Math 9.2

and that will halt this machine at make -j6 and no fan.

with fan, no problem. but make -j3 works OK with no fan.

After compiling these little ARM devices run SageManifolds doing complex

Jupyter Lab interactions. Pretty slick.

So I think this is a wonderful desktop.

 

I know the Gnome people own GItHub and Microsoft

TypeScript backended on GitHub integrated with the wonderful

Microsoft Code is a great desktop that Armbian is Smart to invest in.

 

more later.

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm running the Gnome  image on my Pinebook Pro and I have to say its pretty good. Ive noticed that the battery life is much more! maybe is due to the GPU work. Everything seems well indeed except that like a previous user said; the changing of the desktop background. I also cannot select any background other than what is specified in /usr/share/backgrounds which dont change anyway. Also, when plugging in a headphone the audio playback wont auto-mute the speakers, ill have to open alsamixer and mute the speakers and bring up the headphone volume; every time i restart the computer. Aside from these everything is much better in terms of fluidity, like its actually more pleasant to use this device now. Great work; Also, I have 0 coding knowledge, i wish i can contribute that's why Im writing this here..

Link to post
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, The 15 Cents said:

Also, when plugging in a headphone the audio playback wont auto-mute the speakers, ill have to open alsamixer and mute the speakers and bring up the headphone volume; every time i restart the computer.

 

no coding needed.. this is just configuration stuff... If you're able to figure out what config files on the desktop need to be fixed and what settings need to be placed in them, that's a huge help... and honestly 80% of the work needed... I can help get the configs into the build after that  :) 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
 Share

4 4