Chromium on Fedora finally gets video acceleration support. 


Chromium with vaapi patch was already available on other distributions. But this was not the case with Fedora. I really want hardware acceleration. But my love for Fedora was holding me back. Then with sheer willpower, I joined Fedora and started maintaining a package in COPR.

I am not really a distro hopper but a DE hopper. I usually jump from Gnome to KDE and vice versa depending upon my mood. Then I started maintaining Chromium with vaapi patch on COPR. I was using the official patch which was submitted upstream for code review. I had very little hope that it will get merge. The patch was outdated and and try jobs were failing.

Google’s decision:

After 6 months, Google officially said that “safe and secure” browser is  their first priority. So they don’t want to invest in maintaining in vaapi on Chromium. After that I started working on my own patch with referenced from the official patch. My patch is about using the existing flags that other operating system uses instead of creating a new flag just for experimentation.

Effects of VAAPI patch:

Chromium with this patch was extremely stable on both of my machines. They both have AMD GPU. My only concern was with Nvidia GPUs which I do not own. Chromium will simply fall into software decoding if it doesn’t find the required drivers.

Chromium uses AMD UVD engine while playing a YouTube video

The CPU usage is drastically reduced. It went down from 120% to 10%.

Merge to Fedora:

It was it then when this patch is finally got recognized by the Fedora’s Engineering Manager @ Red Hat and Chromium maintainer, Tom Callaway.
The patch is now merged in devel.

Future plans:

I am now working on an ozone build with wayland and vaapi support. The build is failing for some reason now. I hope to get a working build in future.