GNOME 43 Misses Window to Merge Ubuntu’s Triple Buffering Patch

Upcoming GNOME 43 will not feature Ubuntu’s patch related to Triple buffering.

Among other stunning features of GNOME 43, heartbreaking news for those who aim for performance in GNOME rather than fancy items.

Ubuntu developed the dynamic double & triple buffering and implemented it on Ubuntu 22.04 LTS when released on April 2022. Hence, you may feel that the GNOME performance is very smooth and there is no “lag”. The overall GNOME animation, window movements, and cursors – all seem very smooth, and there is less stutter.

The primary reason is the dynamic switching between double and triple buffering, which enables the GPU not to become idle until it gives the full-frame rater back to mutter. The smoothness is achieved by pre-rendering two frames instead of one in double buffering.

If you want to learn more about the algorithm, read this lovely post outlining the entire inner working.

GNOME 43 & Mutter won’t feature Triple Buffering Patch

The code was supposed to be merged upstream in GNOME 43 (via Mutter MR#1441). But it didn’t.

Hence, the Ubuntu team rebased the Ubuntu 22.10 Kinetic Kudu with this patch to enjoy a better framerate on your GNOME desktop.

So, unfortunately, Fedora and other distros that ship GNOME 43 separately will not receive this feature.

There are some “debates” ongoing on this particular Mutter merge request between GNOME and Ubuntu devs which does not look good (in my opinion).

Conversations on the GNOME 43 tripple buffering patch to mutter
Conversations on the GNOME 43 Triple buffering patch to mutter

So, at this stage, it’s completely unknown when this patch will land in GNOME and which future version. Until then, enjoy the lag-free experience only on Ubuntu.

Honestly, it would have been an excellent addition to the list of cool features that GNOME 43 brings to the table.


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