First results from the 4.9.0 survey

Here, developers communicate stuff that does not go onto the main News section or the front page of the site.
[Dev Blog] [Development Builds] [Git Change Log] [GZDoom Github Repo]

Moderator: GZDoom Developers

User avatar
Graf Zahl
Lead GZDoom+Raze Developer
Lead GZDoom+Raze Developer
Posts: 48336
Joined: Sat Jul 19, 2003 10:19 am
Location: Germany

Re: First results from the 4.9.0 survey

Post by Graf Zahl »

Now that we got a more meaningful amount of reports I can finally post comprehensive numbers on non-Windows systems.

With 4655 reports we got
12.7% on Linux, when only using the reports from last week it is 11%.
1.9% on macOS ARM
1.5% on macOS x64.
3.7% on Windows 7+8 combined.

Linux has shrunk just as expected and the 11% from the last week seem more reasonable.

What's really interesting here is the Mac numbers. The rise in ARM Macs is a lot more than the decline in Intel Macs. Apparently the poor specs of these systems really hurt their numbers.
What surprised me is that the Windows 7 numbers shrank after the official download page got updated. It looks like this aging system really is on the way out now.
User avatar
wildweasel
Moderator Team Lead
Posts: 21504
Joined: Tue Jul 15, 2003 7:33 pm
Preferred Pronouns: He/Him
Operating System Version (Optional): Windows 10, 21H1
Graphics Processor: nVidia with Vulkan support

Re: First results from the 4.9.0 survey

Post by wildweasel »

Graf Zahl wrote:What surprised me is that the Windows 7 numbers shrank after the official download page got updated. It looks like this aging system really is on the way out now.
Which reminds me: the forum index's download link needs to be updated as well, under "Important Threads." I'd do that myself but I'm not sure how to do that. :?
User avatar
Rachael
Admin
Posts: 13090
Joined: Tue Jan 13, 2004 1:31 pm
Preferred Pronouns: She/Her

Re: First results from the 4.9.0 survey

Post by Rachael »

Edit BBCodes. It's the "latestversion" BBCode.
Doge
Posts: 11
Joined: Wed Aug 18, 2021 8:45 pm

Re: First results from the 4.9.0 survey

Post by Doge »

Graf Zahl wrote: Wed Nov 09, 2022 1:22 am We now have 1000 survey reports so I think it is time for a first summary.

Here's the most interesting numbers, in parentheses the numbers from 4.7.0 with roughly 1300 users:

90% (85%) use Vulkan compatible hardware. This can be further divided into 65% on modern upper mid range to high end hardware and 25% low end to mid range.
4% (5.6%) use hardware which can run OpenGL with all features enabled but cannot run Vulkan. Note that this only considers theoretical support. Only 0.5% have hardware that is actually capable performance wise.
6% (9.1%) use legacy hardware which requires fallback solutions in the renderer and only has limited support for some features.


85% (75%) use a system with 4 CPU cores and more - among the Vulkan compatible systems this is 90% (82 %).

Currently Linux sits at 19%, macOS at 3.6%. The numbers were even higher before the download page was updated, so I expect them to shrink further. Over half of the reported Macs are ARM models already.

The numbers here are a bit weird in the low end segment. The lower mid range which includes all high end hardware of the last pre-Vulkan generation of hardware virtually imploded - the mentioned 0.5% is a mere 5 users reporting such hardware. 4 of these 5 users were early reporters so in the last two days only one single person reported such a system. Oddly enough the extreme low end has seen virtually no decline at all - the drop in OpenGL-only hardware almost exclusively came from the better hardware of this segment being on decline.
The same could also be witnessed at the lower end of Vulkan hardware. The vast majority of users these days uses a Geforce 960 or better (including AMD equivalents.)
So the trend that was already observable with 4.7 has continued with the user base getting ever more divided into two very distinct groups whose hardware has little to nothing in common.

User share of Windows 7/8 has dropped to 4.5% (18%), roughly 50/50 between owners of Vulkan compatible hardware and older setups.

I concluded the 4.7 survey with the following statement:
"Interestingly, the situation with CPU cores has not changed much at the low end. At the high end we are starting to see that many systems now come with 8 or even 16 cores, but the low end is virtually unchanged. So essentially we have the same situation as with graphics hardware - a large, fast moving group that frequently updates their systems and a slowly declining group of holdouts with old systems.
All this combined looks like there is a certain group of users which desperately holds on to their extremely outdated systems while everybody around them is updating their computers.
If this trend continues we may soon have a situation where the overwhelming majority of users has a system supporting modern render APIs but the remaining part of the user base cannot even use the OpenGL renderer with all features enabled. I am not sure yet how such a situation may play out - hopefully it gets mitigated by Windows 11 forcing a lot of users to upgrade and flood the second hand market with their Windows-11-incompatible systems, which then in return may drive out more of the truly ancient ones."

So here we are, one year later. I was actually hoping that Windows 11 and the drop in graphics hardware prices would bring some change - but apparently it did not. What we see instead is an increasing vacation of the middle ground while the size of the lowest end has only marginally declined over the last 3 years. This is actually becoming a serious problem by now because the need to support this segment is impeding the future development of the engine for modern hardware as most of our users own. We need two totally incompatible graphics APIs and two totally incompatible ways to use the APIs to serve both sides well - essentially meaning we need two different engines. Yes, there will be changes, we are currently evaluating our options.
I think the survey was manipulated a little bit,i think this mostly by the fact that in the PB server,there was announcement where one of the admins tell to the high-end people to not sign up to the survey
imagen_2022-11-21_194637446.png
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
Last edited by Doge on Mon Nov 21, 2022 5:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.
dpJudas
 
 
Posts: 2890
Joined: Sat May 28, 2016 1:01 pm

Re: First results from the 4.9.0 survey

Post by dpJudas »

According to your screenshot he told the high-end people not to sign up, not the low-end people.

Not that it matters for me personally what the stats say. My optimization efforts aren't really driven by what users use, but rather what I find interesting to work on. At best it could only convince me to stop working on GZDoom altogether if it was only used by 10+ year old hardware. :)

Also, maybe we should make GZDoom a little bit slower. Hopefully that will make the BD authors work a little harder on optimization! That joke works both ways! :D
Last edited by dpJudas on Mon Nov 21, 2022 5:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Doge
Posts: 11
Joined: Wed Aug 18, 2021 8:45 pm

Re: First results from the 4.9.0 survey

Post by Doge »

dpJudas wrote: Mon Nov 21, 2022 5:00 pm According to your screenshot he told the high-end people not to sign up, not the low-end people.

Not that it matters for me personally what the stats say. My optimization efforts aren't really driven by what users use, but rather what I find interesting to work on. At best it could only convince me to stop working on GZDoom altogether if it was only used by 10+ year old hardware. :)
ok,i edit my error,sorry for the confusion
User avatar
Chris
Posts: 2868
Joined: Thu Jul 17, 2003 12:07 am
Graphics Processor: ATI/AMD with Vulkan/Metal Support

Re: First results from the 4.9.0 survey

Post by Chris »

Doge wrote: Mon Nov 21, 2022 4:47 pm I think the survey was manipulated a little bit,i think this mostly by the fact that in the PB server,there was announcement where one of the admins tell to the high-end people to not sign up to the survey imagen_2022-11-21_194637446.png
Someone seems to be under the misconception that optimizing for low-end hardware will also optimize the same for high-end hardware. Especially for graphics cards, optimization for low-end hardware can actually be a de-optimization for high-end hardware. For instance, it used to be that the number of draw calls to the GPU weren't terribly important, and you more had to watch for triangle count and overdraw, whereas nowadays triangle count is practically irrelevant (and overdraw isn't as big of a deal) while the number of draw calls is a real bottleneck. CPUs had a similar issue, where it used to be that you wanted to reduce the number of operations and using more memory was just fine, but then CPUs got to the point of being faster than memory, so now you want to avoid extraneous memory access and focus more on utilizing cache (even if that means doing more operations, since the CPU has time to spare compared to pulling from RAM). Not to mention pipelining and out-of-order execution means the way to optimize is completely different, and to say nothing of how to optimize for core count (one or two threads running at 3-4GHz, vs several cores/threads running at 2-3Ghz).
User avatar
Rachael
Admin
Posts: 13090
Joined: Tue Jan 13, 2004 1:31 pm
Preferred Pronouns: She/Her

Re: First results from the 4.9.0 survey

Post by Rachael »

If they want "optimization" they can start by cleaning house internally. Most of their problems are in their own code.

GZDoom only does what it is told to do. And if it's told to do things terribly by the mod author, it will do things exactly as terribly as the mod author tells it to.

All a message like that does is solidify my stance that moving forward is the best option and leaving such subpar hardware behind is a necessary evil.

Also - until they work out their own internal issues rather than "passing the buck" to the GZDoom authors, I've decided to remove their Discord server from our #the-hub channel. If they want to play sleezy blame games like this I want no part of it. Clean up your own fucking shit, first, and quit treating us like we're fucking robots (we *ARE* actual people you know, and you CAN actually talk to us). You can earn it back by learning how to *talk* to us, instead of being quite blatantly disrespectful and spreading lies about GZDoom's performance issues when it runs perfectly smoothly without that mod.
User avatar
Kinsie
Posts: 7333
Joined: Fri Oct 22, 2004 9:22 am
Graphics Processor: nVidia with Vulkan support
Location: MAP33

Re: First results from the 4.9.0 survey

Post by Kinsie »

Graf Zahl wrote: Sat Nov 12, 2022 1:48 pm Long term the route should be clear, though. It's only a matter of time until OpenGL will be dropped, the API is no longer being extended, so once a new hardware feature comes up that we want to support we might be forced to abandon it.
OpenGL is definitely on the outs. None of the major consoles support it (with the exception of the Switch, where it's merely discouraged - this is why Strife is on Switch, but not other platforms), which means it won't get much in the way of focus from other engine/game developers. Or drivers as a result, but AMD users are already familiar with that...

I know Valve have outright removed OpenGL from their own engine earlier this month, after giving their players about a year of advance warning, and the game primarily played on that engine has a lot of players on low-end systems, so that'll be an interesting litmus test to see how a much larger active playerbase than ours responds. I don't think too much trouble was stirred up by them killing 32-bit and DX9...
User avatar
Graf Zahl
Lead GZDoom+Raze Developer
Lead GZDoom+Raze Developer
Posts: 48336
Joined: Sat Jul 19, 2003 10:19 am
Location: Germany

Re: First results from the 4.9.0 survey

Post by Graf Zahl »

I can only judge from our survey numbers. OpenGL currently sits at a bit more than 10% - and the vast majority of these 10% is bottom of the barrel laptop systems that were already bottom of the barrel when they were purchased more than 7 years ago, which is around the time when the last of these non-Vulkan chipsets were dropped by their manufacturers.

The obvious problem here is that virtually all users with systems that can afford to upgrade have upgraded and the holdouts are possibly those whose financial situation does not allow it.
So the current situation is that we got 9+% of users who would best be serviced by the GLES renderer and 1% that needs the full GL renderer - disregarding those with broken Vulkan drivers which seem to exist for already discontinued early Intel chipsets.

So I think one thing is clear. If serious work on the renderer resumes it will most certainly focus on Vulkan - first making the backend code a bit more accessible and then restructuring it to take actual advantage of a modern API.


BTW, that guy seems to have had some effect - I noticed a slight uptake of low end numbers in the last 1.5 weeks.
User avatar
KynikossDragonn
Posts: 229
Joined: Sat Dec 12, 2020 10:59 am
Preferred Pronouns: He/Him
Operating System Version (Optional): Void Linux
Graphics Processor: Intel (Modern GZDoom)
Location: Independence, KS, USA

Re: First results from the 4.9.0 survey

Post by KynikossDragonn »

I look forward to the Vulkan renderer not being listed as "Experimental!" in the options menu, at the very least!
User avatar
Graf Zahl
Lead GZDoom+Raze Developer
Lead GZDoom+Raze Developer
Posts: 48336
Joined: Sat Jul 19, 2003 10:19 am
Location: Germany

Re: First results from the 4.9.0 survey

Post by Graf Zahl »

That's an oversight. That label should long have been removed.

Return to “Developer Blog”