Linux Gaming ATI Catalyst drivers

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Posted on: Tue, 07/14/2015 - 11:36 By: Fratm

ATI RadeonInstalling the ATI catalyst drivers for my video card cleared up so my any issues.  I can now run steam games with the steam overlay, which means I was able to turn on the framerate feature so I could get real numbers on performance.  I was unable to do that before.

So far on the two games that I have tested in steam and on linux (L4Dead 2 and Borderlands 2) I am getting solid 60 FPS in normal game play.   Sometimes it drops down to 36FPS when the action gets real crazy, for example when you have 50+ zombies trying to chew on your butt all at once, my frame rate drops to 36.   

I did also notice that with the old drivers the textures in Left4Dead 2 were messed up, the bald guy had a strange looking graphical glitch that made him look like he had a mowhawk; One of the other characters had a glitch that gave her a big black blotch on her chest.  Those issues cleared up too.  Nice to know these were driver issues and not defective hardware, which is always my worry when I see glitches. 

I also started monitoring load and cpu temps, my load will spike up to 3 in L4D2, but the temps stay low at around 56c.  I've been reading that 80c+ is when you need to worry about it.  So that's good news.   The system load hovers aroun 1 and 1.4 during normal game play.  That I think is acceptable.   Using htop I can see that it is spreading the load across both cores and both hyper threads pretty evenly.

Over all, I am happy with results I am getting with a system that was never really meant for gaming.

Will this be my main gaming rig?  No, but I will play on it when I just feel like playing a quick game or two. Will I convert my Windows gaming rig to Linux?  Not just yet.  We are almos there, but there are still some games that are windows only that I like, and I don't want to deal with WINE.   I think when we start seeing linux ports as a common/normal part of pubishing new games, then it will become my primary OS for gaming, until then I will use both, Linux for the games that are support and Windows for when I want to play games that are Win only.

I'll post updates on other games as I install and play them, maybe I can encourage others to start gaming in linux.