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Does the X1550 work with Linux yet?

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  • Does the X1550 work with Linux yet?

    Some time ago I tried 3 (or maybe 4) times, all separate occasions, to get my X1550 graphics card working with Linux... it was a nightmare. I completely disabled my onboard video for a week on one occasion, heh. I completely recompiled X on one of my attempts too... a lot of it was over my head, not fun, and in general a terrible experience. I managed to reinstall xorg via my package manager (pacman, I'm using Arch Linux) and reassociate everything again - mostly. I have some unassociated files in my filesystem such as 'Xephyr' and 'Xvesa' (I know what they are, but don't use them :P).

    So I don't want to repeat that again.

    But I do want to know if the X1550 works with Linux now? I don't really mind what driver I end up using, as long as I keep the features of my current Intel integrated video that would apply to the X1550 as well, such as:

    - If X is running, it won't randomly crash if it feels like it
    - If the chipset encounters something it can't handle (eg, OpenGL), it just slows the PC down by humongous proportions until I fix it, instead of dying and taking X with it

    So, notwithstanding random issues that might need fixing, should I expect a fight without doing much else beyond simply installing an appropriate driver and reconfiguring xorg.conf? I'm fine with waiting, but I don't want any more nightmares.

    Thanks in advance.

    -dav7
    Last edited by dav7; 12-09-2008, 03:05 AM.

  • #2
    I have an X1550 and it works fine.

    Best results are using the radeon driver in its latest form, you can download a current good build from Tormod Volden's PPA if you're using Ubuntu. Click the ati drivers link near the top of the page, you'll need the video-ati and video-radeon packages. Otherwise, check out the latest version from git.

    Once you have the drivers installed, specify the radeon driver in xorg.conf and specify EXA as the accel method. I also specify the dri and glx modules to load, but I believe they will load by default when the driver is in EXA mode. Works very well.

    Comment


    • #3
      The X1550 has been working just fine in Linux for a long time(at least with fglrx). Are you using a recent version of X.Org/XServer?

      Comment


      • #4
        This sounds interesting.

        I've never been able to figure out which XServer version I have, but I have Xorg 1.5.1.

        The problems I can remember I experienced in the past were (in no particular order):
        • Compiz Fusion's cube was slow (IIRC, this might have been with my integrated video)
        • Compiz would start up with a white screen
        • I couldn't convince the card to start up at my desired resolution - it'd always boot up at something insane
        • The refresh rate was completely messed up - the card wouldn't detect that my 19" CRT could run at 1400x1050@85Hz and only run it at like 60Hz or something - 83Hz with help (at the most), and I could feel my eyes straining because of it. My integrated video can't run at 1400x1050 unfortunately, only 1280x1024 (which I think the X1550 also failed to detect properly) - 1400x1050 is asking for the integrated display hardware to crash.
        • Not exactly related to the card, but if I booted up my system with "Integrated" selected in the BIOS and attempted to start X using the X1550, the system would hard-lock. No ssh, no caps lock light flashing, nada. Same if I selected "PCI" and tried to start X with the integrated video selected. This worked absolutely fine in windows allowing me to connect displays to both my integrated video and both DVI heads of the X1550 (with a VGA converter), giving me a tri-display setup which I never forgot.

        I don't remember much else, heh.

        But I don't want to check anything out from git. No compiling; like I stated clearly before I'm using Arch Linux, a binary-based distro, and although there is a compile-oriented user package repository I don't want to do any of this on my own - I just want it to work, without hassle, and want everything handled by the package manager.

        -dav7
        Last edited by dav7; 12-09-2008, 09:36 PM.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by dav7 View Post
          The problems I can remember I experienced in the past were (in no particular order):
          • Compiz Fusion's cube was slow (IIRC, this might have been with my integrated video)
          • Compiz would start up with a white screen
          • I couldn't convince the card to start up at my desired resolution - it'd always boot up at something insane
          • The refresh rate was completely messed up - the card wouldn't detect that my 19" CRT could run at 1400x1050@85Hz and only run it at like 60Hz or something - 83Hz with help (at the most), and I could feel my eyes straining because of it. My integrated video can't run at 1400x1050 unfortunately, only 1280x1024 (which I think the X1550 also failed to detect properly) - 1400x1050 is asking for the integrated display hardware to crash.
          • Not exactly related to the card, but if I booted up my system with "Integrated" selected in the BIOS and attempted to start X using the X1550, the system would hard-lock. No ssh, no caps lock light flashing, nada. Same if I selected "PCI" and tried to start X with the integrated video selected. This worked absolutely fine in windows allowing me to connect displays to both my integrated video and both DVI heads of the X1550 (with a VGA converter), giving me a tri-display setup which I never forgot.
          Sounds like:
          1. You had some issues using your integrated card instead of your dedicated card.
          2. You were using the opensource radeon driver when this driver did not support x1550. I'm not sure if it supports it now.
          You should have been using the closed source fglrx driver from ATI.

          Comment


          • #6
            Oh, sorry, I forgot to mention that those results were WITH the fglrx driver.

            In one of the "sessions" I mentioned above I managed to get the card to half-work by recompiling X and using the latest radeon driver, but OpenGL didn't work properly and in the end I just gave up.

            I'm thinking this card is a lost cause, heh.

            -dav7

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by dav7 View Post
              Oh, sorry, I forgot to mention that those results were WITH the fglrx driver.

              In one of the "sessions" I mentioned above I managed to get the card to half-work by recompiling X and using the latest radeon driver, but OpenGL didn't work properly and in the end I just gave up.

              I'm thinking this card is a lost cause, heh.
              It should work fine. you will, however, need mesa 7.2 for the 3D driver. Not all distros are shipping that at the moment. so you may need mesa and xserver bits from testing/experimental/rawhide/etc.

              Alex

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by dav7 View Post
                Oh, sorry, I forgot to mention that those results were WITH the fglrx driver.

                In one of the "sessions" I mentioned above I managed to get the card to half-work by recompiling X and using the latest radeon driver, but OpenGL didn't work properly and in the end I just gave up.

                I'm thinking this card is a lost cause, heh.

                -dav7
                That's odd, it should definitely work on fglrx and has worked for quite some time.

                The white screen you mentioned is because it didn't detect compositing. Maybe your xorg.conf wasn't set up? This would explain every point you mentioned as well.

                Edit: I should also mention that some time ago ATI didn't support AIGLX and you had to use XGL to achieve compositing effects otherwise you'd get that white screen too.
                Last edited by Sacha; 12-10-2008, 04:35 AM.

                Comment


                • #9
                  The white screen you mentioned is because it didn't detect compositing. Maybe your xorg.conf wasn't set up? This would explain every point you mentioned as well.

                  Edit: I should also mention that some time ago ATI didn't support AIGLX and you had to use XGL to achieve compositing effects otherwise you'd get that white screen too.
                  #1, how do I configure xorg.conf to enable compositing? Add 'Section "DRI' ..."?
                  #2, that rings possible bells.

                  Also...

                  Code:
                  /Users/dav7/ + pacman -S mesa
                  resolving dependencies...
                  looking for inter-conflicts...
                  
                  Targets (1): mesa-7.2-1  
                  
                  Total Download Size:    0.71 MB
                  Total Installed Size:   3.59 MB
                  
                  Proceed with installation? [Y/n] 
                  :: Retrieving packages from extra...
                   mesa-7.2-1-i686          725.0K  345.8K/s 00:00:02 [#####################] 100%
                  checking package integrity...
                  (1/1) checking for file conflicts                   [#####################] 100%
                  (1/1) upgrading mesa                                [#####################] 100%
                  /Users/dav7/ +
                  Looking interesting...

                  -dav7
                  Last edited by dav7; 12-10-2008, 05:27 AM.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    You will need functioning acceleration in order to do basic things like Xv video on the X1550.

                    The latest builds of the radeon driver work fine for this, you'll need a recent build though. The last release was several months ago (6.9.0) and I don't believe that build supports the R500 chips fully, the newer builds do much better in that regard including EXA support which gives you TexturedVideo and Xv, etc.

                    That's why I suggested Tormod Volden's PPA... unfortunately those are Debian/Ubuntu (.deb) packages, I don't believe you can use them in Arch. There may be someone doing packages for your distribution, check with the Arch forums and you may find what you need.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I see.

                      How long should it take for this stuff to become mainstream for most distros? If it's less than 6 months, I might wait until then.

                      -dav7

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Ubuntu 8.10 seems to have a pretty decent set of driver versions already for someone with a 5xx card.

                        I haven't tried it on an X1550 but it works well out of the box on the 5xx cards I do have.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I don't know what Milyardo's smoking. I also have an R500 (X1300), and it NEVER worked well with fglrx. Under any distro, with any version of Xorg, with any release of fglrx. Something was always busted.

                          Anyways, I have an R500. Until about a month ago, I was running Arch Linux. R500's work with FOSS stuff. You need Mesa 7.2, Xorg 7.4, Xserver 1.5, and kernel 2.6.26 (or better, for all three). Last I used it, the stuff was in the "testing" repo, but it was all there, supplied by Arch, a mere "pacman -S" away.

                          This gave me hardware 3D and basic ACPI (screen dimming on my laptop, etc.). I haven't used Compiz, but Kwin's composite effects worked fine with OpenGL and render.

                          It wasn't perfect, though. I run dual head (xrandr foo --left-of bar). the right edge of foo occasionally gets some horizontal "flicker" or "static" when scrolling (it stops when the scrolling stops). Every once in a great while, the cursor would get seriously messed up - it would look like the silhouette of the top half, copied and placed below the original, with about a dozen repetitions. Couldn't figure out what triggered it, and it didn't happen often, only happened with dual-head, but it was there.

                          Other than that, there is some occasional horizontal tearing in full-screen video playback (not nearly as bad as the diagonal tearing I always had with fglrx), and, unlike some cards out there, you need your xorg.conf to get it to work. It doesn't have to be anything elaborate, but it did need at least a couple things declared. Still have my xorg.conf from my arch install, if you want it as a starting point.

                          But yeah, good luck. And remember - the card isn't a lost cause. It's in good shape now, and it's best days on Linux are still ahead of it!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            bridgman: I see.

                            jeffro-tull: Ooh, thanks for your very interesting reply.

                            So... hm. I'll wait for the video tearing and dual-head issues to get fixed up and then put the X1550 in! :P

                            -dav7

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              dav7, you're on Arch Linux, right?
                              The packages in the main repos already DO support 3D, Xv, and all that pretty well.
                              Just do: (as root)
                              Code:
                              pacman -Rd catalyst catalyst-utils
                              pacman -S libgl libdrm xf86-video-ati
                              and here is the xorg.conf I use for my X1650:
                              Code:
                              Section "ServerLayout"
                              	Identifier     "X.org Configured"
                              	Screen      0  "Screen0" 0 0
                              	InputDevice    "Mouse0" "CorePointer"
                              	InputDevice    "Keyboard0" "CoreKeyboard"
                              EndSection
                              
                              Section "Files"
                              	ModulePath   "/usr/lib/xorg/modules"
                              	FontPath     "/usr/share/fonts/misc"
                              	FontPath     "/usr/share/fonts/100dpi:unscaled"
                              	FontPath     "/usr/share/fonts/75dpi:unscaled"
                              	FontPath     "/usr/share/fonts/TTF"
                              	FontPath     "/usr/share/fonts/Type1"
                              EndSection
                              
                              Section "Module"
                              	Load  "xtrap"
                              	Load  "dri"
                              	Load  "extmod"
                              	Load  "glx"
                              	Load  "dbe"
                              	Load  "freetype"
                              	Load  "synaptics"
                              EndSection
                              
                              Section "InputDevice"
                              	Identifier  "Keyboard0"
                              	Driver      "kbd"
                              EndSection
                              
                              Section "InputDevice"
                              	Identifier  "Mouse0"
                              	Driver      "mouse"
                              	Option	    "Protocol" "auto"
                              	Option	    "Device" "/dev/input/mice"
                              	Option	    "ZAxisMapping" "4 5 6 7"
                              EndSection
                              
                              Section "Monitor"
                              	Identifier   "Monitor0"
                              EndSection
                              
                              Section "Device"
                                      Option     "EnablePageFlip"     	"on"
                                      Option     "AccelDFS"           	"on"
                                      Option     "DisplayPriority"    	"high"
                                      Option     "ColorTiling"        	"on"
                                      Option     "AccelMethod"        	"EXA"
                                      Option     "DRI"                	"on"
                              	Identifier  "Card0"
                              	Driver      "radeon"
                              	VendorName  "ATI Technologies Inc"
                              	BoardName   "RC410 [Radeon Xpress 200M]"
                              	BusID       "PCI:1:5:0"
                              EndSection
                              
                              Section "Screen"
                              	Identifier "Screen0"
                              	Device     "Card0"
                              	Monitor    "Monitor0"
                              	SubSection "Display"
                              		Viewport   0 0
                              		Depth     1
                              	EndSubSection
                              	SubSection "Display"
                              		Viewport   0 0
                              		Depth     4
                              	EndSubSection
                              	SubSection "Display"
                              		Viewport   0 0
                              		Depth     8
                              	EndSubSection
                              	SubSection "Display"
                              		Viewport   0 0
                              		Depth     15
                              	EndSubSection
                              	SubSection "Display"
                              		Viewport   0 0
                              		Depth     16
                              	EndSubSection
                              	SubSection "Display"
                              		Viewport   0 0
                              		Depth     24
                              	EndSubSection
                              EndSection
                              Modify as you see fit for your needs
                              and I can change resolution just fine, with the KRandr applet in KDEmod 4. I'm sure there's something out there for GNOME users

                              Let us know how it goes.

                              Comment

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