Creative Finally Open-Source their X-Fi Driver

Has anyone used the Sound Blaster X-Fi driver from Creative Labs? The driver was full of bugs and was always a step behind the Windows releases. Other open source drivers with support for the Creative X-Fi were also stagnant in development.

Finally, Creative saw it was going nowhere with this policy and open-sourced this driver’s code. The code is available under the GNU GPLv2 License now.

The first X-Fi driver for Linux was released in September 2007 but was for 64 bit only. No 32 bit driver came out for a long time after that. This April saw another beta release which comes almost after a year and a half. With the code being open-sourced, we now expect to see a more regular release cycle. The driver is 13,000 lines in size and has a big limitation of external I/O modules. The driver is capable of ALSA PCM playback, ALSA recording and mixing.

The Linux version of the X-Fi driver has been named Creative XFiDrv 1.00. Though, far from perfect this time as well ( The driver causes a problem in the Fedora 9 Kernel) , the driver is open to open-source developers which comes as a big relief.

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Chinmoy Kanjilal

Chinmoy Kanjilal is a FOSS enthusiast and evangelist. He is passionate about Android. Security exploits turn him on and he loves to tinker with computer networks. He rants occasionally at You can connect with him on Twitter @ckandroid.

  • this is a great news, now finally we can tweak the driver, which is crappy on Windows 7. I use my Creative Xfi 5.1 USB with my Z5500 for an amazing sound. checkout my review of this soundcard.

    • Nice review there. I have not tried the driver on Windows 7. Do not have that hardware with any friends or myself.