I have enjoyed learning to program 3d graphics using OpenGL -it’s a great API. Unfortunately I have had endless problems getting hardware acceleration of OpenGL on my ATI Rage Mobility graphics controller running under Windows 98SE. An ICD is supplied by ATI - atoglrp9.dll which I naively believed would do what ICDs are supposed to do and provide a reliable openGL API to their hardware. Nothing could be further from the truth. Some of the openGL API seems to work others parts don’t and routinely my machine fatally crashes. You might say it’s my program thats at fault … on Windows you can test it by forcing software accleration using opengl32.dll. My programs work fine in software - the ICD is the problem.
I have wasted loads of time with this stuff and my experience of opengl is to say the least a bit jaded now. I see opengl being blamed (on this board and many others) for problems with hardware which has nothing to do with opengl itself. It is therefore ironic to me that ATI is ‘up there’ on the ARB and yet it seems can’t produce a reliable opengl driver for their product!
Is there a quality test you can do on an opengl implementation to see that it really works? Should we be advocating a ‘Designed for OpenGL’ sticker on the box as a guarantee that what you buy will do what it says on the tin?
I’ll get nvidia next time, atleast then I can call that clever Mr. Kilgard.