- 1 Selecting the right driver
- 2 Installation
- 3 Loading
- 4 Xorg configuration
- 5 Features
- 6 Troubleshooting
- 6.1 Xorg or applications will not start
- 6.2 Screen artifacts and frequency problem
- 6.3 R9 390 series poor performance and/or instability
- 6.4 Freezes with "[drm] IP block:gmc_v8_0 is hung!" kernel error
- 6.5 Cursor corruption
- 6.6 System freeze or crash when gaming on Vega cards
- 6.7 Navi power consumption
- 6.8 WebRenderer (Firefox) corruption
Selecting the right driver
Depending on the card you have, find the right driver in Xorg#AMD. This page has instructions for AMDGPU and AMDGPU PRO. At the moment there is Xorg radeon driver support for Southern Islands (SI) through Arctic Islands (AI) cards. AMD has no plans to support pre-GCN GPUs. Owners of unsupported GPUs may use the open source radeon or the AMD Catalyst driver .
Install the package, which provides the DRI driver for 3D acceleration.
- For 32-bit application support, also install the multilib repostory. package from the
- For the DDX driver (which provides 2D acceleration in Xorg), install the package.
- For Vulkan support, install the package. Optionally install the package for 32-bit application support.
Support for accelerated video decoding is provided by and for VA-API and and packages for VDPAU.
It may be worthwhile for some users to use the upstream experimental build of mesa, to enable features such as AMD Navi improvements that have not landed in the standard mesa packages.
Install theAUR package, which provides the DRI driver for 3D acceleration.
- For 32-bit application support, also install the AUR. AUR package from the mesa-git repository or the
- For the DDX driver (which provides 2D acceleration in Xorg), install the AUR package.
- For Vulkan support using the mesa-git repository below, install the vulkan-radeon-git package. Optionally install the lib32-vulkan-radeon-git package for 32-bit application support. This should not be required if building AUR from the AUR.
ln -s /usr/lib/libLLVM-10git.so /usr/lib/libLLVM-10svn.so
Enable Southern Islands (SI) and Sea Islands (CIK) support
CONFIG_DRM_AMDGPU_CIK=Y should be be set in the config.
Specify the correct module order
Even when AMDGPU support for SI/CIK has been enabled by the kernel, the radeon driver may be loaded before the
amdgpu has been set as first module in the Mkinitcpio#MODULES array, e.g.
Set required module parameters
The module parameters of both
radeon modules are
They need to be set as kernel parameters or in a modprobe configuration file, and depend on the cards GCN version.
[..] amdgpu 0000:01:00.0: Use radeon.cik_support=0 amdgpu.cik_support=1 to override.
Set module parameters in kernel command line
Set one of the following kernel parameters:
- Southern Islands (SI):
- Sea Islands (CIK):
Set module parameters in modprobe.d
Create the configuration modprobe files in
/etc/modprobe.d/, see for syntax details.
For Southern Islands (SI) use option
si_support=1, for Sea Islands (CIK) use option
options amdgpu si_support=1 options amdgpu cik_support=0
options radeon si_support=0 options radeon cik_support=0
modconf is in the the
HOOKS array in
/etc/mkinitcpio.conf and regenerate the initramfs.
AMD provides a proprietary, binary userland driver called AMDGPU PRO, which works on top of the open-source AMDGPU kernel driver.
From Radeon Software 18.50 vs Mesa 19 benchmarks article: When it comes to OpenGL games, the RadeonSI Gallium3D driver simply dominates the proprietary AMD OpenGL driver.
Install theAUR. Optionally install the AUR package for 32-bit application support.
The ACO compiler is an open source shader compiler created and developed by Valve Corporation to directly compete with the LLVM compiler, the AMDVLK drivers, as well as Windows 10. It offers lesser compilation time and also performs better while gaming than LLVM and AMDVLK.
RADV_PERFTEST=aco before starting an application.
amdgpu kernel module should load fine automatically on system boot.
If it does not happen, then:
- Make sure to #Enable Southern Islands (SI) and Sea Islands (CIK) support when needed.
- Make sure you have the latest package installed. This driver requires the latest firmware for each model to successfully boot.
- Make sure you do not have
vga=as a kernel parameter, since
- Check that you have not disabled
amdgpuby using any kernel module blacklisting.
Enable early KMS
Xorg will automatically load the driver and it will use your monitor's EDID to set the native resolution. Configuration is only required for tuning the driver.
If you want manual configuration, create
/etc/X11/xorg.conf.d/20-amdgpu.conf, and add the following:
Section "Device" Identifier "AMD" Driver "amdgpu" EndSection
Using this section, you can enable features and tweak the driver settings, seefirst before setting driver options.
Tear free rendering
TearFree controls tearing prevention using the hardware page flipping mechanism. If this option is set, the default value of the property is 'on' or 'off' accordingly. If this option is not set, the default value of the property is auto, which means that TearFree is on for rotated outputs, outputs with RandR transforms applied and for RandR 1.4 slave outputs, otherwise off:
Option "TearFree" "true"
You can also enable TearFree temporarily with xrandr:
$ xrandr --output output --set TearFree on
output should look like
HDMI-A-0 and can be acquired by running
DRI sets the maximum level of DRI to enable. Valid values are 2 for DRI2 or 3 for DRI3. The default is 3 for DRI3 if the Xorg version is >= 1.18.3, otherwise DRI2 is used:
Option "DRI" "3"
Variable refresh rate
Newer AMD cards support 10bpc color, but the default is 24-bit color and 30-bit color must be explicitly enabled. Enabling it can reduce visible banding/artifacts in gradients, if the applications support this too. To check if your monitor supports it search for "EDID" in your Xorg log file (e.g.
[ 336.695] (II) AMDGPU(0): EDID for output DisplayPort-0 [ 336.695] (II) AMDGPU(0): EDID for output DisplayPort-1 [ 336.695] (II) AMDGPU(0): Manufacturer: DEL Model: a0ec Serial#: 123456789 [ 336.695] (II) AMDGPU(0): Year: 2018 Week: 23 [ 336.695] (II) AMDGPU(0): EDID Version: 1.4 [ 336.695] (II) AMDGPU(0): Digital Display Input [ 336.695] (II) AMDGPU(0): 10 bits per channel
To check whether it is currently enabled search for "Depth"):
[ 336.618] (**) AMDGPU(0): Depth 30, (--) framebuffer bpp 32 [ 336.618] (II) AMDGPU(0): Pixel depth = 30 bits stored in 4 bytes (32 bpp pixmaps)
With the default configuration it will instead say the depth is 24, with 24 bits stored in 4 bytes.
To check whether 10-bit works, exit Xorg if you have it running and run
Xorg -retro which will display a black and white grid, then press
Ctrl-C to exit X, and run
Xorg -depth 30 -retro. If this works fine, then 10-bit is working.
To launch in 10-bit via
startx -- -depth 30. To permanently enable it, create or add to:
Section "Screen" Identifier "asdf" DefaultDepth 30 EndSection
Various software may have graphical artifacts or crash with 10-bpc color.
Monitoring your GPU is often used to check the temperature and also the P-states of your GPU.
To check your GPU's P-states, execute:
$ cat /sys/class/drm/card0/device/pp_od_clk_voltage
To monitor your GPU, execute:
$ watch -n 0.5 cat /sys/kernel/debug/dri/0/amdgpu_pm_info
With radeontop utility you can view your GPU utilization, both for the total activity percent and individual blocks. Install it with AUR package.
- WattmanGTK — A GTK GUI tool to monitor your GPU's temperatures P-states
- TuxClocker — A Qt5 monitoring and overclocking tool.
- https://github.com/Lurkki14/tuxclocker || AUR AUR
Since Linux 4.17, it is possible to adjust clocks and voltages of the graphics card via
It is required to unlock access to adjust clocks and voltages in sysfs by appending the Kernel parameter
/sys/class/drm/...are just symlinks and may change between reboots. Persistent locations can be found in
/sys/devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:01.0/0000:01:00.0/. Adjust the commands accordingly for a reliable result.
To set the GPU clock for the maximum P-state 7 on e.g. a Polaris GPU to 1209MHz and 900mV voltage, run:
# echo "s 7 1209 900" > /sys/class/drm/card0/device/pp_od_clk_voltage
The same procedure can be applied to the VRAM, e.g. maximum P-state 2 on Polaris 5xx series cards:
# echo "m 2 1850 850" > /sys/class/drm/card0/device/pp_od_clk_voltage
To apply, run
# echo "c" > /sys/class/drm/card0/device/pp_od_clk_voltage
To check if it worked out, read out clocks and voltage under 3D load:
# watch -n 0.5 cat /sys/kernel/debug/dri/0/amdgpu_pm_info
You can reset to the default values using this:
# echo "r" > /sys/class/drm/card0/device/pp_od_clk_voltage
It is also possible to forbid the driver so switch to certain P-states, e.g. to workaround problems with deep powersaving P-states like flickering artifacts or stutter. To force the highest VRAM P-state on a Polaris RX 5xx card, while still allowing the GPU itself to run with lower clocks, run:
# echo "manual" > /sys/class/drm/card0/device/power_dpm_force_performance_level # echo "2" > /sys/class/drm/card0/device/pp_dpm_mclk
Allow only the three highest GPU P-states:
# echo "5 6 7" > /sys/class/drm/card0/device/pp_dpm_sclk
To set the allowed maximum power consumption of the GPU to e.g. 50 Watts, run
# echo 50000000 > /sys/class/drm/card0/device/hwmon/hwmon0/power1_cap
Until Linux kernel 4.20, it will only be possible to decrease the value, not increase.
If you are not inclined to fully manually overclock your GPU, there are some overclocking tools that are offered by the community to assist you to overclock and monitor your AMD GPU.
- amdgpu-clocks — A script that can be used to monitor and set custom power states for AMD GPUs. It also offers a Systemd service to apply the settings automatically upon boot.
- TuxClocker — A Qt5 monitoring and overclocking tool.
- https://github.com/Lurkki14/tuxclocker || AUR AUR
- CoreCtrl — A GUI overclocking tool with a WattMan-like UI that supports per-application profiles.
- https://gitlab.com/corectrl/corectrl || AUR AUR
Startup on boot
If you want your settings to apply automatically upon boot, consider looking at this Reddit thread to configure and apply your settings on boot.
Enable GPU display scaling
To avoid the usage of the scaler which is built in the display, and use the GPU own scaler instead, when not using the native resolution of the monitor, execute:
$ xrandr --output output --set "scaling mode" scaling_mode
Possible values for
"scaling mode" are:
- To show the available outputs and settings, execute:
$ xrandr --prop
- To set
scaling mode = Full aspectfor just every available output, execute:
$ for output in $(xrandr --prop | grep -E -o -i "^[A-Z\-]+-[0-9]+"); do xrandr --output "$output" --set "scaling mode" "Full aspect"; done
Xorg or applications will not start
- "(EE) AMDGPU(0): [DRI2] DRI2SwapBuffers: drawable has no back or front?" error after opening glxgears, can open Xorg server but OpenGL apps crash.
- "(EE) AMDGPU(0): Given depth (32) is not supported by amdgpu driver" error, Xorg will not start.
Setting the screen's depth under Xorg to 16 or 32 will cause problems/crash. To avoid that, you should use a standard screen depth of 24 by adding this to your "screen" section:
Section "Screen" Identifier "Screen" DefaultDepth 24 SubSection "Display" Depth 24 EndSubSection EndSection
Screen artifacts and frequency problem
A workaround  is saving
There is also a GUI solution  where you can manage the "power_dpm" with AUR and AUR.
R9 390 series poor performance and/or instability
If you experience issues  with a AMD R9 390 series graphics card, set
radeon.cik_support=0 radeon.si_support=0 amdgpu.cik_support=1 amdgpu.si_support=1 amdgpu.dc=1 as kernel parameters to force the use of amdgpu driver instead of radeon.
If it still does not work, try disabling DPM, by setting the kernel parameters to:
radeon.cik_support=0 radeon.si_support=0 amdgpu.cik_support=1 amdgpu.si_support=1
Freezes with "[drm] IP block:gmc_v8_0 is hung!" kernel error
If you experience freezes and kernel crashes during a GPU intensive task with the kernel error " [drm] IP block:gmc_v8_0 is hung!" , a workaround is to set
amdgpu.vm_update_mode=3 as kernel parameters to force the GPUVM page tables update to be done using the CPU. Downsides are listed here .
If you experience issues with the mouse cursor sometimes not rendering properly, set
Option "SWCursor" "True" in the
"Device" section of the
/etc/X11/xorg.conf.d/20-amdgpu.conf configuration file.
If you are using
xrandr for scaling and the cursor is flickering or disappearing, you may be able to fix it by setting the
xrandr --output HDMI-A-0 --set TearFree on.
System freeze or crash when gaming on Vega cards
Dynamic power management may cause a complete system freeze whilst gaming due to issues in the way GPU clock speeds are managed.  A workaround is to disable dynamic power management, see ATI#Dynamic power management for details.
Some users have reported higher than usual idle power consumption when using kernel 5.3. There is a patch set available for kernel 5.4 that appears to fix the issues.
WebRenderer (Firefox) corruption
Artifacts and other anomalies may present themselves (e.g. inability to select extension options) when WebRenderer is force enabled by the user. Workaround is to fall back to OpenGL compositing.