How good AMD GPU drivers on Zorin compared with Windows?

I kinda miss Zorin - I used it for a while before switching to Win10 because the lack of DX10/DX11 support in WINE was frustrating to me for the games I wanted to play. Now in windows 10/11 I'm nostalgic for the stability in games I had with WINE.

This was back around Zorin 10 or 11 I think, maybe right between the two, and reading up on things it looks like DXVK has come a long way since then. I've tried everything I can think of to fix these driver timeouts I keep getting in graphical applications (I have an R9 390X - she's old and now officially abandoned by AMD, but she's always been at stock speeds or lower, well cleaned, and in a case with excellent airflow), so I'm considering going back to an old favorite OS of mine if that has even the faintest hope of fixing the problem.

Because if I can't fix this problem it means either AMD or Microsoft remotely bricked my GPU literally days after AMD decided to abandon support for their entire R9, R7, and R5 GPU lineup. In the middle of historically the worst time in the history of GPUs to need a new one. Naturally I'm rather livid with both AMD and Microsoft right now (Windows 11 is awful BTW, it's like all the worst parts of macOS and Ubuntu fused into an unholy advertisement distribution platform masquerading as an OS).

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You can try it out using the Try Zorin option by burning a Bootable USB.

AMG Graphics are a thorn in Linux' paw. But maybe that older AMD is well covered by the kernel.

Bourne and I were just talking about this. AMD has classically shown a hug disregard towards Linux users, and as such, support for AMD cards on Linux has been like non existent.

This is why, when picking out my new computer at the beginning of this year, I specifically was searching for and Intel/Nvidia system instead. And I can see I made the right choice, as my system has been supported ever since.

You are so right about how pathetic it is too, that AMD chose this time, during a tech shortage, and GPU availability crisis, to drop support on their older GPU's. Nobody can get new video cards today unless they want to eat scalpers costs.

I couldn't believe how many 3090 owners that there are. I sure found out when that Amazon New Worlds BETA came out, and then that whole fiasco with EVGA 3090 cards happened. A lot of rich people is all I can say.

3090 cards are like 2000 dollars cards that scalpers sell for 3000 on Ebay. Well, lets just say people weren't too happy when their extremely expensive and difficult to replace during a tech shortage 3090's went fried.

Truth is, a lot of companies are having QC issues. NZXT riser cable famous fire, where it took Steve Burke to put in a professional report to the CPSC, to get the freaking government involved to finally get change out of them!

And then following after that disaster, we got Gygabyte, who's power supplies were literally going up in flames. Thankfully Steve didn't have to involve the CPSC to switch Gigabytes tune, but it did take a solid 3-video's of press coverage to finally get Gigabyte to admit wrong doing.

So ya, I get it, nearly impossible to get video cards during a tech shortage. But the answer is, since you have AMD, no, your totally screwed. Thats the reality, and thats not going to change anytime soon the way AMD is running things. I think your going to have to switch to Nvidia.

At least Nvidia supports Linux, has been for years, and I have had quite a bit of success with Nvidia.

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I think a big part of this is tech companies especially have way, way too little respect for QC and QA employees, and those get cut first and rarely expanded until you have something truly disastrous happening.

Maybe it's bleed over from the software dev, especially game dev, idea that QA testers are paid to "play" too much and therefore have to be given ridiculous documentation requirements to make their work more like "real" work - meanwhile gaming QA testers arguably have their hands in every functioning system within a game you have ever touched, while getting credit for none of it.

Given how broken huge budget studio titles, software projects, and even hardware often are these days I think it's more than safe to say nobody is giving QA/QC the respect it deserves and ultimately getting burned by it. I just wish in software they weren't also burning the end user by forcing the QA job onto their own customers and acting like it's a privilege and not a sign of staggering mismanagement - luckily that's less doable in hardware but they're sure as hell trying.

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Fun fact: I was running Zorin 10 on an R9 280 back then, and it was genuinely very stable. Unless the open source AMD drivers have regressed precipitously... I'm not sure how Zorin 16 would be worse on another, newer, more robust GCN card but it's always possible.

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It IS possible... Stuff gets dropped from the Linux kernel all the time. At over a million lines of code, I imagine they like to trim it.
But really, the only way to be sure is to test it. And keep your fingers crossed...

Apparently my issue with driver timeouts is not only not isolated... it's not even restricted to GCN. Or a driver version. At this point... I'm almost impressed. How is it even possible to mess up this many completely different combinations of hardware and software? On the plus side, seems it's not as much an issue on the Linux drivers, which I find hilarious given their history.

I think it might finally be time to ditch windows for good.

I ditched Windows almost by accident... And I have no regrets.
At first, I installed WINE and such... But I ended up finding better Native Linux apps.
I haven't had anything to do with Windows long enough... That when Users dual booting ask questions, I find myself lost.

I was always worried about dual booting because I've read about windows installers trying to format over existing Linux drives if they can find them. I got around it by formatting my Zorin partition into a format that Windows couldn't read by default lol - and ended up having to use Zorin to save a drive that Windows made unusable after a power outage interrupted installation (rural infrastructure sucks).

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I think in years past, MS was more antagonistic toward Linux. Perhaps felt threatened by it. But slowly, there are observable changes in the last few years of MS becoming more supportive of Linux. Including Microsoft setting a strong stance on Manufacturer specs that are Linux Friendly.
I wonder if this is going to swing back to antagonistic again, with the New Leadership of MS taking things into interesting directions - outlandish Machine requirements for Win11 during a tech shortage included.

I edit the title to a more readable length. If you want to have any changes please ask.

If nothing else, these official proprietary AMD drivers (AMDGPU) do support R9 390 (as per their own release notes):
https://www.amd.com/en/support/kb/release-notes/rn-amdgpu-unified-linux-21-10
These have to be installed manually, but I guess it is worth a try :wink:

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