Linux support

A native linux version with full gpu support. It does already work with Wine, but Cpu only.

As far as I know, there is no WINE Implementation at the moment that is capable of running DX12 with DIRECtML Support, even Valves Proton does not do that.

So it probably would require a lot of rework to do that - but I wouldn´t mind if there is a chance to get it running :slight_smile:

Linux app and GPU support is currently not in the works. If there is a significant demand for this then we can make it work.
@reiner we use ONNXRuntime so porting to using CUDA, TensorRT or oneDNN is just compiling libraries. It comes down to number of prospective users on the platform.
If we see lots of demand here then definitely would happen in the future.

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Disappointing to hear that it isn’t currently in the works.

According to the ONNXRuntime project it looks like Linux is fully supported. Would a Linux build really be that difficult?

I’m currently running in VMWare with GPU support. However, it seems to only minimally use the GPU. I’m getting ~3 sec / frame rates and random crashes with this setup. It is pretty frustrating to run a multi day job and have it ruined at the end.

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The initial build is only a small part of the development, then you have testing, updates, customer support, etc. I’m sure a Linux version would be implemented if there was sufficient demand to make it profitable, which I am guessing doesn’t currently exist.

And here is the frustrating “chicken or the egg” situation. Would more people switch to Linux if the software they use existed on it? We’ll never know because developers don’t want to develop for Linux because not enough people use it…because developers don’t make their software available for it, lmao.

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Not for me. No use for linux at all. Sorry.

No need to say sorry. You do you.

I use Linux exclusively, except for the fact that VEAI is the only thing I’ve seen that does what it does like it does it. Current setup is a 3900x w/2 1080TI’s. I use QEMU/KVM, split 12 CPU threads, 32gb RAM and pass the 2nd GPU to the VM through VFIO and run VEAI on the Win10 VM. It works extremely well, I don’t think there is any performance penalty at all except for the fact that I have almost literally split the available hardware in half. So if the Linux host half isn’t really doing much at the moment it’s kind of a waste. When A GPU is passed through it’s no longer available to the host at all unless the passthrough is undone.

Bigger issue at the moment is that I just scored a 6900xt on a ridiculous deal. Assuming it’s not a mistake or a scam, I can’t easily come up with a reasonable hardware solution with what I have without just getting rid of the VM and building a Windows box and that makes me cringe a little bit. So yeah +1 for native linux

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I would love for this to be on linux, I would like to move away from windows, but when you have great software pulling you towards windows like topazlabs it makes it harder lol… So making this port over to Linux makes the switch much easier.

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I agree with this statement, if it was made available already on linux, then you could see a more fair comparison, then only offering it after the fact. I do think many people don’t switch to linux because developers tend to create software or games that only run on windows. If they gave people the option by creating a linux version, I think more people would switch. Especially since windows is highly invasive and acts like a spyware OS.

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Thanx :slight_smile:

I personally don´t need CUDA and I think its good to have the option now to use Intel/Nvidia/AMD cards…

And although I like Linux and would like to see a Linux Version, I sure know that the majority of creative users are on Win or MAC and that the effort of a Linux Version simply doesn´t pay off…

Well that’s a bit of a loaded assumption with software like this. This isn’t “creative” software, it’s computer heavy software. Most desktop users probably don’t know what Linux is…yet. If some professional company wanted to run this on a GPU server or a cloud server, they’d probably want to be running it on a Linux instance, when you take the average consumer out of the equation the roles are swapped, Linux runs the server world.

Mac’s have a legacy of graphic arts software just cuz that’s how they marketed their machines and it worked…there’s no good reason for it other than the fact that graphic artists bought Macs and companies made the commercial software for them. I’ll bet good money that a native version of VEAI will run faster on a Linux box if it’s done right, even Windows games sometimes run faster on Linux with Proton than they do on windows. Rather than running VEAI on a PC someone could be running it on an AWS instance, I’m sure people already do. I don’t know what the Google/AWS/cloud world is really like ATM but I do know that AWS ran Linux instances 2 years prior to running Windows instances.

Besides that, I really can’t see how it would much work to create a Linux version when a Mac version exists. Mac runs on BSD Unix with a bunch of proprietary mac libs and junk. Linux is “UNIX like” with mostly open source libs and drivers. I won’t pretend to know much about programming but since Topaz supports Windows and Mac and releases versions pretty frequently, the code is probably pretty portable and the UI is probably built with Qt. I’m willing to bet the reason they dropped CUDA was because Mac doesn’t do Nvidia and in order to have some portability they had to switch APIs

So while there’s probably very little interest from home users for a Linux version at the moment, there’s probably a huge market for professional/datacenter type stuff if those users exist.

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I agree with the server side part about commercial use cases being more Linux based and how that could be a huge demand.

One thing to add though is that Linux users (consumers) are increasing, there are more brands coming out selling laptops with Linux on it now. Even with the introduction of Linux Ubuntu through windows makes Linux more popular.

For example: System 76 is producing laptops with POPOS (a user friendly OS) and you can opt in for Nvidia graphics to game.

There are other companies I have come across as well doing this. Plus, you have to remember the entire raspberry pi community (a device originally intended to make computers cheap for users in 3rd world countries became one of the biggest hobbyist devices for all kinds of things - tons of kids are learning how to use Linux by raspberry pi alone and how to program)

So, I think if the consumers were given the option rather than ask for it, and since the developer mentioned its not very complicated to do up above, I think this would make it easier for windows users to fully switch over to Linux if more and more developers opted into make linux based games and software. Windows needs developers, developers don’t need windows.

Thanx for getting in the discussion :slight_smile:

Topaz is creative software. It just happens to be computational intensive - think of Photoshop/qark Xpress/pagemaker/etc… years ago - all used by creatives for art/publishing/foto/vide/etc… and at the time needing big machines to do the chores… Photo Editing no longer is an issue, the compute power is there nowadays.

And thats the current state of the user base Topaz is aiming for: Desktop users doing creative stuff (Photo Editing, Video, Denoising of Photos, etc…)… From Hobyyists to preofessionals - all Desktop users.

You are completely right that the market for bigger players with warehouses of servers exist. Amazon, Netflix, Huawei, youtube, etc… all are into the “video encoding, editing, converting, etc…” game and have very big server farms and tons of GPUs to use - and most of them run departments where neural networks are trained and used for all kinds of stuff. They have a ton of people working in these departments.

Almost all of the research in the “field of AI” is done in Linux, I know not of one research department that hasn´t got theyr ONXX/Tensorflow/CUDA/Pytporch/whatever stuff running on mostly Ubuntu… The stuff Topaz is using under the hood mostly originates from these researches.

The job they are doing is “baking it into a desktop app for creative users”…

The bigger companies already have “stuff like this” - and its all out there already.

Of course, There is a linux-based market where Topaz could tap into, but its not like “topaz has invented the wheel and now everybody is waiting for them to port it into the linux world”… It already is in the linux world :slight_smile:

There is a niche for Companies like Topaz: Adress Companies that have to deal with content, but are not into the technical side already… For example smaller studios which want to do restauration of Movies - or museums/archives, etc… They have a use for a “clustered, custom tailored solution” which is implemented in a automated workflow or integrated into the internal systems they are already using…

So there are different markets with different demands.

But I doubt that discussion about enterprise solutions or Topaz thoughts of calling Paramount to sell them something is discussed here in this group :slight_smile: We are here to discuss end-user products like the ones we all see on the Topaz website - desktop Apps for creative use (no, its not computational use - Topaz isnt selling a Matlab clone…)

And here the argument is closing: The amount of work needed to get a desktop app running, maintaining it, etc… is much more than simply “compile it, then run it”… And this has to pay off for Topaz. I have been working in creative departments for decades, ranging from print, foto, video, publishing to restauration, etc… and I always encountered the mindset: “we need to solve task XYZ, so lets buy the machine and OS that does that”… And since the MACs and Windows Machines dominate this market - the market for linux simply is too small at the moment to put too much effort into it…

But of course, its possible. Use a cross-plattform capable GUI System, library, etc… and a desktop Linux version could be made. My impression is that most people simply don´t have the insight on how much work it is to maintain a software like this. Its much more work than one thinks.

While I totaly agree that Linux is becoming more and more important on the desktop and that there is far more linux in the world than the average user might anticipate (all smartphone OS are linux, all IOT is Linux, almost every server, webserver, cluster management, etc.)…

We are still talking about desktop environments here :slight_smile:
Have you actually used POP OS intensively?

The argument they use to have a “dedicated NVIDIA” Install actually is more or less a clever marketing stunt - picking up the thinking of people not knowing better that it is a big problem ot get a GPU running in Linux .

In fact, since PopOS (which I used and like, don´t want to bash on it), which is based on Ubuntu (BTW: New release of POPOs is out since a few days, new kernel…), simply enables the open source driver for NVIdia by default :slight_smile: So the “hope” that everything is running instantly falls appart, as soon as one wants to actually make use of nvidia specific stuff like nvenc, full CUDA, etc… So one has to manualy switch over to the proprietary nvidia driver - and after a reboot - all done…
Looking over at a simple Ubuntu Install: Its all the same… Ubuntu in its current state simply detects an Nvidia card and enables it, installs the drivers (and then you have to move over to the nvidia, not trhe open source one)…

So System76 doesn´t actually add something very meaningfull here - I never had any difference in usage of any NVIDIA GPU from Ubuntu compared to POP OS - its a good marketing thing they pulled of…

(Don´t get me wrong, POPOs is good and has a lot of other advantages)

And to avoid misunderstanding: I personally would like to have a Linux Version - but I totoally see the amount of work that is needed to put into a LINUX version and - for the moment - that doesn´t pay off for Topaz…

But no one knows, maybe there are enough Linux Fans at Topaz and they want to go the extra mile some day and be the pioneers of bringing more creative commercial software to Linux - maybe they change theyr minds…

The statement “its easy” is not correct, though. Just because it CAN be done and from a technical viewpoint its easy to compile it for another plattform, doesn´t mean that the whole process is effortless.

Haha, yeah I get it, windows does dominate the desktop environment still as well as MacOS. I think this mostly has to do with the fact manufactures put it on their laptops in the first place and got people familiar with it. Btw, I disklike MacOS more than windows lol… If linux was shipped out as much as windows and mac os it wouldn’t be so foreign. I guess that was the point I was making regarding system 76, that it’s normalizing putting a Linux based operating system on laptops being shipped out. I wasn’t so much emphasizing POPos. More so saying hey, it’s a pretty easy linux distro to get started on. But, like how you mentioned Ubuntu and drivers etc. I think Ubuntu is the easiest distro to use, I just don’t like it as much because they do a lot proprietary stuff by comparison, but they support drivers really well unlike some other distros.

As for using PopOs intensivley, I have used it quite a bit, but honestly not really anything for a GPU. I use an older laptop for linux (doesnt have a dedicated GPU) and my newer laptop (with a dedicated GPU) for windows because developers keep making windows exclusive applications and games. Which is why I think windows needs developers more than developers need windows. Everyone follows suit and because of that windows does really well.

As for system 76 specifically, good point. I was more so hoping with their dedicated Nvidia install that they would more widely support applications and games and normalize linux for creators and gamers. Not so much in saying that they are bringing something new to the table. Like, I can easily install PopOS on my newer laptop with a dedicated GPU and not have to buy their laptop. Although they do have coreboot which is nice.

Yeah, it might very well be more work to create a Linux version, I understand it’s about making more profit overall. I just noticed the statement above and it made it sound like it wasn’t so difficult:

Particularly the part when he said that, “it’s just compiling libraries.”

Hopefully, there is enough demand for them to consider doing this and isn’t all that difficult. I mean it doesn’t seem like are writing it from scratch to make it available on Linux.

I get it, I am not saying it’s easy, I said it wasn’t very complicated. Easy for windows users to switch but basically not as complex as writing and entirely new code for Linux from scratch. But, anyway, yeah, the maintenance part like I noticed you mentioned in another post would be a lot of the extra work that may or may not pay off for them.

So I get it if they don’t do it for financial reasons and time, but if they did do it, it opens up a market of users who are diehard Linux. But then I recall what you mentioned above, there is still the whole issues with drivers regarding Nvidia on Linux, but at least the operating system overall isn’t basically spyware.

Windows has a lot of telemetry and Cortana is highely invasive and I caught microsoft’s software products attempting to send, “non-confidential, non-personal info to their servers.” When I viewed the stuff they were about to send, it had text from files I didnt even save on my computer but to an external drive that wasn’t connected to my computer… Names, images, passwords (when I used word for passwords… lol)… It was all highly sensitive info, like if I had to scan a drivers license it would have uploaded that… I am like… So, I really dont like windows, it is a spyware OS and microsoft creates spyware like software products as well. Even disabling a lot of the privacy invasive things they do, they still do it, to a degree… I guess that’s why I am hoping topazlabs still comes out with a topazlab Linux version. As their are distros on Linux that respect one’s privacy or can be configured to do such.

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yeah, popos has some nice tweaks for gaming and creativity workflows - which make it slightly easier to install - but on Ubuntu. the same stuff or similar is “just a click away”… I like the “appstore” version of popos :slight_smile:

I really admire System76 to put together a “all in one package” for Linux users - and personally I would love to see more companies jump in.

But we have to be realistic - although linux on Desktop has come a long way, it still isn´t there where windows is - for the unexperienced “normal” customer… While MOST stuff works right out of the box, getting a webcam, a streaming client, a printer, etc… not always is as easy as “going to the store, buying it, installing it and… done”… (I admit that windows also has its troubles and its not always working as expected and that a lot of extra gear also runs well instantly on Linux - but taking a broad look and take the whole market into account - Linux is not there yet.)

Regarding suraj`s comment: Yes, compiling the stuff isn´t that big of a deal - in most cases the original frameworks/networks even originated from the linux domain… What makes it “more work than expected” is “the rest”… Building a GUI around it, getting all the dependencies right, maintaining another branch of “how to adress the GPU”, getting I/O correct, bugtracking, not being able to offload or ask MS or APPLE if some DirectML/Metal stuff does not work, etc… It adds up…

I think we are on the same page all in all :slight_smile:

Yeah, I agree with ya. That was all well said. Yeah, I wish linux was more user friendly then it is now. There are some distros that are better, but it’s definitely not plug in play or ready to go.

Windows does have an advantage with installing applications, it’s pretty straightforward. However, I have ran into some uses cases where it was easier to install applications on linux then windows. Like there are times where I have do a lot more manual configurations at times with windows for open source software in order to get it to work or find additional software that pairs with it and install it properly and linux pretty much recognizes everything I need and just gets it and install it for me. The one part that lacks the most with linux though is the GUI. Many applications stick to the terminal and that can be a huge shock for newcomers as it was too me when I first started learning how to use Linux. Like setting up a VPN on windows is easier then setting up a VPN on Linux and you get the GUI. Although, I do think the kill-switch works better on Linux then Windows, I have noticed. Anyway, getting off topic lol…

Honestly, I haven’t been using popos lately because a lot of my stuff is on windows. It has probably been almost a full year since I was really on it, I have been tempted to put PopOS or another distro on my newer laptop for a while now… So, I can’t really remember how the application store compares to other distros app stores. (I usually use snap) But, I do have games and software that only works on Windows or may not work on Linux (would have to try like wine or crossover), so it holds me back some…

So anyway, yeah we are on the same page and thanks for your input. It was nice talking to ya. :+1:

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You can call it what you want I don’t see how it’s in the same category as photoshop or Adobe Premier or whatever the Windows/Mac professionals use. You don’t have extensive creative input that effects the output. You tick a couple boxes, maybe move a slider, click a couple buttons, wait a couple hours. And that’s fine, but I don’t think this type of software requires a graphic arts degree to use. It may be part of a suite of something that Topaz sells that has alot of creative uses, but VEAI itself does not.

That’s not really what I mean. I didn’t mean large companies will use it specifically…though they may. I meant …people will use it on large computers… some of which may not exist inside their house. Not everyone wants to try to buy a $2000-3000 GPU right now and watercool the thing and have it heat up the computer room 10 degrees. I just looked at an article that said AWS sells Windows instances @ 2x the cost of an equal Linux instance. I don’t know the details of setting up one of those containers, I just know if I didn’t wanna deal with the hardware stuff that’s exactly what I’d be looking to do and if I can get the instance for 1/2 the cost, well…

Again, I never said anything about a big company doing anything. I didn’t see anything on the Topaz sales page about commercial licensing or anything like that. When I mention server farms and cloud instances, I’m talking about you or me using that as a VEAI hardware platform. They sell instances to the public right? You don’t have to be Paramount to purchase a slot in a server farm.

Well, the difficulty of building each version lies solely on how much forethought went into portability from the start, or if it were refactored at some point to add it. Being that there are active Mac and Windows versions, and assuming they drop new versions for each at the same time suggests they are already well setup for this. If they aren’t already using a cross platform UI toolkit for example then their current system is already painful for new releases, but I’d assume that is not the case. Testing and QA on another platform is probably the biggest expense they’d incur.

Now Linux obviously has nuance but hardware vendors are already heavily vested in Linux, the days of fighting with GPU drivers is pretty much over. I don’t really understand the talk of PopOS and Ubuntu, nothing about Nvidia drivers makes either of them special. I run Manjaro/Arch on alot of machines that do alot of different things. I’m preferable to AMD GPUs but I haven’t even thought for more than 10 seconds about GPU drivers on AMD/Nvidia/Intel GPU drivers. It’s easier to deal with than Windows because you literally load up Pamac/Pacman and grab the latest proprietary or open source driver then forget about it for the next 5 years as it will update whenever a new one is released. I don’t even have to navigate to AMD or Nvidias site for a DL as you would in Windows so I don’t understand that discussion.

Linux has always been a chicken and egg thing. “Linux sucks as a desktop cuz XYZ doesn’t run on it”, then it’s “Well why would we make XYZ run on Linux when not enough people use it”. Those 2 cases are starting to become obsolete. Rpi’s and soon to be the Steamdeck are a couple pieces of hardware that people really want to use and they trojan horse desktop Linux into peoples houses and at least familiarizes them with a Linux build that’s not running on their refrigerator. Commercial businesses always take risks, at some point Topaz might want to look at it and say “is it worth the investment to support Linux now and be ready for the boom of Linux desktop users that is imminent” or is it worth it to let that walk away when a group of Linux guys gets together and realizes exactly what you suggested…That all of this stuff is already available on Linux in some form and creates an OS project that does what VEAI does, is probably cross platform so it’ll work in Windows too, and there goes a share of the market to some Github repo.