Grässlin, maintainer of KWin, has published an article raising the possibility remove support OpenGL 1.x , and thus lighten the window manager code and optimize it for newer hardware. In other words, KWin, the change being implemented, will support OpenGL 2 and up.
At first, the holder (“The cost of maintaining old hardware”) made me think that the change could be more negative than positive because I disagree with having to keep up with the hardware, especially with regard to graphs. However, progress in reading, begins to reasons why this change is not as risky . It is then clear that any support would be removed prior to OpenGL 2 to simplify code.
First, to keep old hardware can be a hassle having to deal with compatibility which, after all, may only be used by a minority in exchange for lower performance on modern computers. But … this is really as old hardware? OpenGL 2 was launched in September 2004, ie the computer in question should be about 8 years old about .
Given the recent progress of KDE and the complaints of many users for being “heavy”, I doubt anyone dares running the latest version of the environment under these conditions . Particularly, I was testing it a few days with a computer probably 5 or 6 years and it works perfectly, except for some details of performance that surely with the NVIDIA proprietary driver would be solved.
Second, being older hardware, even more difficult test or not they are compatible with a computer today or not achieved. The author names the case of Intel, whose plates are integrated, thus requiring a separate computer to test and obsolescence AGP port which is connected to graphics boards.
Finally, mentioned as a problem, the support we provide companies with the proprietary driver. For example, in the case of ATI, perhaps the most problematic, is given support OpenGL 1.x, thus removing that supports the OpenGL version, it would indirectly support removing the controller. However, as Mesa supports OpenGL 2, would be no problem using free drivers .
In summary, removing the support in no way affect the average user of KDE . In fact, the environment, not noted for being assigned to computers with low incomes, but focuses much on the graphic details, which, for good performance, requires relatively new hardware. Moreover, to realize that change would benefit more than it hurt.
Do not ignore the fact that not yet occurred or that change has been confirmed to happen from which version , but a test being conducted by the Development Manager KWin that in his own words, says: “If I meet the performance, I’ll be tempted to remove the code related to OpenGL 1.x”.