In part of this question and request from Intel.
First off, we know you don't want to spend time providing driver support of making these GPUs found in the Intel Atom D2700. You guys know as well as I do that the graphic processor technology will run on Windows 8. Windows metro is the same basic metro technology used on the Xbox 360. It runs on the crappiest driver you can possibly have running on a Windows 8 OS which is the Microsoft Basic Display driver. It is very basic and bare bones as you would find on Vista, Windows 7 and so it is on Windows 8.
The intel GMA 3650 is by far above those minimum specifications. Forget b.s. like "Cedar Trail" or "Clover Trail". Those names are just names and meaningless in and of itself. Lets look at the technical hardware. It is all still the same IP architecture platform. The CloverTrail GPU uses the same PowerVX 545 based GPU architecture with maybe a subtle changes but drivers are just sub routines that feeds OS/applications/etc. data and instructions and values to tell a video chip to do a number of functions, display pixels along a raster line and values for changing the resister values which impacts the color of a pixel, frequency, resolution, and many other information. It is the interface between the abstraction layer to the real hardware. It generally consists of three layers, the Direct X/Open GL interface which is the abstraction layer. This only needs to roughly equate to what is down below in the real hardware. The "glue" software logic and the actual code that is part of the driver system that interfaces to actual hardware as mapped. We know without the driver system itself, you don't communicate to components and external hardware.
Intel, what is the issues you guys are facing with actually developing the drivers? How can we help you make the drivers work? Be forthcoming with us on technical information and process of developing a driver and testing as well as quality control and input to make this work. You got the technical documentation on he drivers and the chips up to Windows 7. For crying out loud, Windows 8 is Windows 7 with a new GUI layer in large respect.
The persistent issue isn't display generation or any of the basic stuff that worked with Windows 7 (largely). The issue is with Metro. Any degree of a respectable driver that runs on Windows 8 desktop and Metro that is even reasonable as it would on Windows Vista and 7 should work out.
I heard sort of these excuses about XPDM and WDDM 1.1/1.2. Come on, you just need a driver that is compliant logically and if something isn't really performing up to standard, it just run slow not crash but seriously, it isn't that big a deal. You were dealing with that in Vista with WDDM 1.0.
You got things working with Intel Atom z2760 which is not much in any technical way different than an intel Atom D2700. So what is the hold up? Most of your issues should be cleaned up by making only line by line tweaks to the source before you compile them out between the two chips. In fact, it is just a downgraded version of the D2700 in that the CPU of the z2760 is 32-bit (x86) vs. (x64) and the drivers code end that would be processed by the processor would just need to be recompiled for 64-bit x64 for optimal capability. In addition, it uses the same video architecture.... Intel GMA 3650 which is a PowerVR 545 GPU. So a working driver for the z270 tablet would only be a tweak or two here and there.
What is the issue at hand, Intel?
You don't need the Cedar Trail team per se. You have the people and they are employees of your company and you just have them involved in producing the drivers for Clover Trail and because they are involved in Cedar Trail, they would cover the driver issues on that. Just cut the b.s. and produce the drivers.
I doubt it's because they can't produce Windows 8 drivers due to any technical issue, it's more the fact that they won't.
Why?, I have no idea, why it would harm their business having working current desktop generation products running Windows 8 (and or Windows 64bit), maybe they genuinely want to phase these out from the market as quick as possible.
Yes, I think it's very, very unlikely to be a technical issue to be honest. Intel have an army of driver experts they could put on this if they chose to.
In another thread here, it was mentioned that Intel disbanded the cedar trail team very early, effectively ending all but the most basic product support. The larger manufacturers realised this and scrapped any plans they had for cedar trail-powered windows 8 tablets/netbooks, but the smaller OEMs missed it (as well as one or two larger companies - IIRC Gigabyte still have an "upgrade to windows 8" logo on the product page for one of their cedar trail tablets). Basically, Intel made a decision about what they thought Atom customers were "worth" and decided that they did not merit the same level of product support that Core i3/5/7 do.
I think they've made it very clear that we simply won't be getting an x64 driver or Metro-compatible windows 8 driver as they don't want to devote any resources to supporting cedar trail. I suspect clover trail will get the same treatment down the line if an issue like this arises with that system. Imagination Technologies are also keeping very quiet on the topic and just direct all queries back to Intel, so they won't be doing anything to help the situation either.
The only thing we, the customers who have been let down, can really do is vote with our feet. In the short term, buy AMD. In the future, I think it's very likely we'll see a full ("professional") version of windows for ARM rather than just RT, and given how Intel has responded to this issue they really only have themselves to blame if they are then wiped out in the tablet/netbook market.
Thank you for taking this to the proper department. In general, Intel should have a general policy to support drivers for driver updates to OSs where they have existing drivers for and for new OSs for as long as the core IP is basically used in current versions or iterations of the same products or 5 to 10 years (whichever is longer and comparable to what others like ATI, NVidia, etc. does). Drivers for any and all systems that Windows 8 was targeted and the minimum specification calls for. I would expect the same driver and graphics capability of the video drivers using the same video modes and functions as it has on any other OS.
Metro is based on the technology used in Xbox 360. I'm pretty sure it really isn't that intensive if it works on the generic Microsoft driver. I don't expect a driver for GMA3650 to be perfect in the first round but bugs can be fixed over time. If they are batched in with work done to make existing products using the same tech work, it would be great.
It is very important for Intel to have a good policy on drivers and have a post-EOI support that allows equipment built within the time frame Microsoft intended for systems to use Windows 8. Microsoft probably doesn't intend a low end computer from 10-15 years ago to work but it would be good policy to support Microsoft's new OS with hardware that wasn't that old. Lets not get the "microwave"-length memory syndrome.
It isn't a world where everyone can just go out and buy a new computer every 3 months. I like to have better handling of hardware rendering than what the basic Microsoft driver is doing. The GPU here is capable of some and should be able to do it with some adequate capability of it. It would also not cause stupid errors that have caused me to not be able to play DVDs with copy-protection. Think about that one.
That is also a part of my concern about it.