VGA Arbitration Code Hits The X Server
Written by Michael Larabel in X.Org on 28 August 2009 at 07:34 AM EDT. 4 Comments
The Linux VGA Arbiter, which has long been talked about and gone through several revisions, is finally approaching the point of entering the mainline kernel and as of last night was committed to the X Server and PCI access library. The VGA Arbiter fixes the problem where multiple graphics cards with legacy VGA interfaces could get sent the wrong data if there are multiple X Servers in use. The arbiter on the other hand is able to control which one is accessed and when.

The VGA Arbiter is ready to enter the Linux 2.6.32 kernel in early September once the Linux 2.6.31 kernel is out the door and the merge window for 2.6.32 opens. As a result, David Airlie pushed the VGA arbitration code that resides in the X Server into its Git master branch (commit), which will be part of X Server 1.7 once released. The libpciaccess Git master code has also received its needed changes.

This is particularly good news for those interested in a proper multi-seat system but have been affected by the lack of VGA arbitration.

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Michael Larabel is the principal author of and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via

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