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PowerXpress Support Notebooks Under Linux

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  • PowerXpress Support Notebooks Under Linux

    Phoronix: PowerXpress Support Notebooks Under Linux

    As mentioned this morning when AMD provided Canonical with a Catalyst 11.4 driver pre-release for proprietary Radeon / FirePro support under Ubuntu 11.04, there's more than just support for Linux 2.6.38 kernel and X.Org Server 1.10. This Linux driver update also provides support for AMD PowerXpress with dual-GPU notebooks...

    http://www.phoronix.com/vr.php?view=OTI3Mg

  • #2
    Sounds interesting. I honestly have no clue how it will respond to switching with virtual terminals, but unless there's more that we haven't learned yet, it sounds like the libraries being switched are all X-related. Maybe the virtual terminal always runs off the integrated chip or something? I guess there could be something in place in the kernel drivers to handle multiplexing/demuxing the console stuff.

    It'd be interesting to hear some more about how this works, but first we need to track down someone with a system that does this. Would one of the new Macbooks be an appropriate test bed for this software? I only ask because my wife may pick one of these up later this spring/summer.

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    • #3
      Those scripts just disable or enable the files that fglrx replaced with the standard installer. I am not sure if that's something i have to like or not, for a distro like U >= 10.04 it is useless as
      Code:
      update-alternatives --config gl_conf
      update-initramfs -utk all
      ldconfig
      and changeing/removeing the xorg.conf would even allow to switch to nvidia driver. Basically those things should be done with update-alternatives on a debian/ubuntu system, it is just a hack that you don't need to remove the complete driver in order to use the onboard chip.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by phoronix View Post
        Phoronix: PowerXpress Support Notebooks Under Linux

        As mentioned this morning when AMD provided Canonical with a Catalyst 11.4 driver pre-release for proprietary Radeon / FirePro support under Ubuntu 11.04, there's more than just support for Linux 2.6.38 kernel and X.Org Server 1.10. This Linux driver update also provides support for AMD PowerXpress with dual-GPU notebooks...

        http://www.phoronix.com/vr.php?view=OTI3Mg
        I just came across this message on Ubuntu Forums:

        Hi all,

        A new fglrx driver (2:8.840-0ubuntu1) is now available in Natty and it
        finally works with the new xserver. There are still a few issues whose
        fixes should land after Beta 1 is released:

        [...]

        Note: despite what the relevant article from Phoronix claims, the driver
        doesn't support AMD's PowerXpress.
        LOL

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        • #5
          Originally posted by monraaf View Post
          I just came across this message on Ubuntu Forums:



          LOL
          Then it's broken in that particular build, but it's there in the fglrx 8.84 stream.
          Michael Larabel
          http://www.michaellarabel.com/

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          • #6
            Those are just tiny mesa vs fglrx switch tools. It is impossible that they do something usefull when you have got amd igp + dedicated. They could be used to switch between intel + amd gfx. But most likely you have to select the card you want to use in the bios.

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            • #7
              I must say after trying Catalyst on my desktop (HD 5850) and then r600g on my laptop (HD 5650) I'd like to claim that r600g is way superior to Catalyst.
              Sure, r600g xv is broken (Debian Sid), but the X11 output (in MPlayer) of r600g is way faster than Catalyst xv anyway so why bother until this gets fixed the right way.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Djhg2000 View Post
                I must say after trying Catalyst on my desktop (HD 5850) and then r600g on my laptop (HD 5650) I'd like to claim that r600g is way superior to Catalyst.
                Sure, r600g xv is broken (Debian Sid), but the X11 output (in MPlayer) of r600g is way faster than Catalyst xv anyway so why bother until this gets fixed the right way.
                I had an issue playing 1080p files with Xv for a while - it's fixed in Master now, I'm struggling to remember if it was a kernel, libdrm, xf86-video-ati fix

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by FireBurn View Post
                  I had an issue playing 1080p files with Xv for a while - it's fixed in Master now, I'm struggling to remember if it was a kernel, libdrm, xf86-video-ati fix
                  You're right, all I had to do was restart X.
                  Thanks!

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                  • #10
                    If they ever implement switching between fglrx and mesa without restarting X it would be interesting even with a computer with just one Radeon card, to use the r600g driver for most of the time and only switch to fglrx when running an app that the mesa driver can not handle.

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                    • #11
                      In one way it seems to be possible. Like unloading the fglrx module is usally no big deal when X is down. But my attempts to switch from oss kms to fglrx where never successfull. I had the code in my script but disabled it (it works for nouveau -> nvidia). From oss without kms to fglrx the success rate was a bit better but not great. Just stop X, rmmod fglrx, switch those libs, run maybe ldconfig and move the xorg.conf away, then start X again.

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                      • #12
                        Has there been any improvement with latest Catalyst driver (11.5)?

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