State of Wayland in 2021?

With Fedora running Wayland by default with Gnome for awhile now, and KDE as of Fedora 34, I’m wondering what the state of it and it’s stability is like as it pertains to AMDGPU particularly, as I run a RX 580.

I have stuck with X as I have been using Cinnamon, but I am considering options.

Thanks in advance

1 Like

From my personal experience, stick with xorg if you want your nvidia card with the proprietary drivers to work properly.

AMD has worked well on Wayland for a while now, probably thanks to their open source drivers.

Wayland is by design more efficient and slim (code wise) compared to xorg (and newer), xorg has had years of patches and code rewrites resulting in a jumbled mess that barely works.


My AMD Vega 56 and now a 6900 seem to work very well with Wayland.


On Intel HD Graphics and the RPi 4 GPU, Sway works great and stutter-free. However, I don’t know if there is any program for VNC or RDP (servers) in Wayland (I think GNOME Shell has something) and if you want to share your screen, you can’t, you only can individual windows. The first was a non-issue for me, as I only use SSH if I need remote access, while the later was slightly annoying when I had to present my screen (I was presenting one window, stopped sharing, presented another window).

I have been a KDE Wayland user since 2018 if my mind serves me right and I think early last year I switched to Sway due to some KWin_Wayland regressions (it used to be stable, then it wasn’t, it was crashing after long uptimes, ie more than 2 weeks w/o restart, had no such issue with Sway).


Hardware wise, Nvidia + Wayland still remains a buggy mess that can’t be fixed unless Nvidia starts to work with the community. All other graphic paths are mostly fine. Maybe the GL-Over-Vulkan layer Zink will fix Nvidia, but do not hold your breath for it.

Software wise, Gnome is a stellar experience (Gnome Desktop being horrible is a different matter). KDE is hit-or-miss, all other desktops offer basic support and slowly crawling over, one API feature at a time.

1 Like

Exactly, I’ve been running on Wayland on Gnome for some years now and it’s really really good. The smoothness is just amazing, no stutters and perfect frame pacing. With pipewire now, there’s no better time to switch to F34. Their Firefox is even starting with MOZ_ENABLE_WAYLAND by default and works with pipewire. The only problem you’ll have is Chrome. It can be made to run with ozone, which is needed to work on Wayland and not xWayland, but the implementation is still lackluster. Same can be said for electron apps since they run on the chrome engine. But now the the beta version of the obs flatpack supports pipewire I think it won’t take long until everything at least works with pipewire albeit not running natively on Wayland.

Quick question: I have an old laptop with dual GPU (Intel HD4000 + Nvidia GT635M) and I wanted to try Wayland. Is anyone aware of reasons why I should not do that? I tried Wayland in a VM and it’s really a step above X11. Also I’d like to use a rolling release and those mostly come with Wayland by default.


If you won’t use the nvidia GPU, I see no reason why not.

1 Like

I was planning to keep that enabled and use it when needed. Optimus is available on Linux if I’m not mistaken.

My question would then be, “when is it really needed?” I had a Dell Latitude E5440 at my workplace and I did a lot on on the Intel HD 4400 (i5 4200U) on both KDE (albeit on Xorg) and on Sway, including 1080p video playback in the browser (4K and even QHD wasn’t doable though). Is it something more demanding that you want to do? If so, you may want to switch between Xorg when doing demanding stuff and Wayland when you just want a stutter-free experience. :man_shrugging:

1 Like

I use Matlab from time to time and I’m getting into image processing way deeper than I used to and having that GPU is a nice touch.

Anyway, I guess it’s a journey into the unknown and it’s not my main machine so it’s worth a try. If it doesen’t work I’ll switch to Xorg and wait. Thanks for the kind and swiftly answer! I’ll see you around.

1 Like