NVIDIA 555.58 Display Driver with Explicit Sync Support Is Here

The NVIDIA 555.58 video driver with explicit sync support is officially released, promising a new era in the Wayland experience for Linux users.

The wait is finally over! NVIDIA has rolled out its latest display driver update, version 555.58, introducing a range of fixes and enhancements that promise to elevate the Linux computing experience.

Among the most noteworthy additions is the explicit sync support for Wayland, a feature poised to significantly impact Linux users who favor the Wayland display server protocol over the traditional Xorg.

Why Explicit Sync Is So Important?

Wayland aims to be simpler and more efficient than Xorg, but its different handling of graphic buffers has necessitated new methods for synchronization.

Wayland inherently does not handle drawing operations directly; it relies on the client to handle rendering, which means synchronization is crucial in ensuring smooth, flicker-free graphics.

NVIDIA’s explicit sync support through the linux-drm-syncobj-v1 protocol is a game-changer in this regard. It provides a mechanism for applications to explicitly manage the timing of rendering commands’ execution.

This is especially important in multi-threaded applications, where managing the order and timing of graphics rendering can become complex.

The addition of this feature in NVIDIA’s 555.58 display driver means that applications running on Linux systems with NVIDIA graphics can now synchronize more effectively with Wayland. As a result, users can expect:

  • Reduced Latency: Systems can reduce input lag by controlling when a frame is ready to be sent to the display, enhancing the responsiveness of interactive applications and games.
  • Improved Frame Pacing: Ensures frames are rendered and displayed consistently, providing a smoother visual experience. In other words, no more flickering and artifacts on the screen.
  • Enhanced Stability: By managing how and when different parts of the system access graphics resources, the risk of crashes and graphical corruption can be minimized.

Other NVIDIA 555.58 Display Driver Highlights

NVIDIA 555.58 tackles a critical segmentation fault observed in multi-threaded NvFBC applications, significantly bolstering the stability of video capture workflows.

To mitigate graphical corruption, NVIDIA has temporarily disabled the “GLX_EXT_buffer_age” extension on Xwayland and rectified problems with this extension when used on X.org with PRIME render offloading.

The release also addresses a potential kernel panic triggered by improper spinlock handling under certain conditions, as well as rectifying issues that could crash the X server when applications request single-buffered drawables.

Furthermore, a race condition that could cause system crashes when concurrent Xid errors occurred across multiple GPUs has been resolved, reinforcing system robustness.

It is also important to mention that the driver now supports HDMI 10-bit per component by default and addresses issues related to color display on some kernels when specific module parameters are used, ensuring more accurate color reproduction and display performance.

NVIDIA 555.58 also enhances its integration with Vulkan and Wayland through the immediate presentation mode in Vulkan Wayland WSI. This mode allows applications to update surfaces without waiting for vertical blanking, which can quicken display times at the risk of introducing screen tearing.

Lastly, to accommodate various user needs and system setups, NVIDIA has introduced an interactive prompt in the nvidia-installer, allowing users to select between proprietary and open kernel modules based on their system’s capabilities.

NVIDIA 555.58 display driver increases the minimum required Linux kernel version to 4.15, ensuring compatibility and enhanced security. For a complete list of changes, visit the release notes.

Bobby Borisov

Bobby Borisov

Bobby, an editor-in-chief at Linuxiac, is a Linux professional with over 20 years of experience. With a strong focus on Linux and open-source software, he has worked as a Senior Linux System Administrator, Software Developer, and DevOps Engineer for small and large multinational companies.

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