"Linux customers affected will be encouraged to use
their open-source driver stack (xf86-video-ati or
xf86-video-radeonhd and Mesa) or stay with the Catalyst 9.3 driver.
"Catalyst 9.3 is due out later this month and it will be the
last unified release that supports the all Radeon GPUs going back
to the R300 series. After that point, only the Catalyst driver that
is updated monthly will only support the R600/700 series (and
future ASICs). This move is beneficial to AMD by having their
Catalyst developers focus primarily on their newer products and by
stripping out the support for older cards so there is less code to
maintain and hopefully better quality code as a result. Ideally we
will see speedier and more reliable adoption of graphics processors
to be released in the future. To the customer, this is a good move,
permitting you are an owner of a Radeon HD 2000 graphics card or
later (or an RS690/RS740 IGP, but the RS780 will remain supported).
With developers being able to just focus on the newer hardware, you
should see new features faster and greater reliability. If you are
bound to R500 hardware or older, well, you have vintage hardware
and hopefully the current Catalyst driver is good enough or you can
use ATI's open-source stack. This move is similar to what happened
to the R200 series support back with the fglrx 8.28.8 driver, but
at that time the hardware was three generations old and the R600
series was nearing its introduction."