While there is Intel VA-API video acceleration support under Linux for Clarkdale/Arrandale hardware and the newest Sandy Bridge CPUs (assuming you are running the very latest code), there is no video playback acceleration support for the Intel G45 / GMA 4500M HD hardware. It was previously promised by Intel engineers with a target delivery date of Q2'2010, but that has long since passed without any further information from Intel.
This week though, Intel's Gordon Jin, who largely works on QA for the Linux driver, wrote to a user on the mailing list
. "If you do want to use libva on GM45, please wait. It’s not implemented yet. Nanhai and Haihao are working on that. If you don’t care about libva (with GPU decoding), then you should play H264 video on Ubuntu 10.10 out of box. If it doesn’t work, please file bugs."
Evidently it looks like it's still being worked on, but there's no revised delivery date. Any G45 VA-API video acceleration support is already too late for the kernel DRM bits to land in the first round of 2011 Linux distributions like Ubuntu 11.04 and Fedora 15, so we would now be looking at H2'2011. With no patches yet seen for the said support, it may not hit during the next merge window that will be coming up in a few weeks (the Linux 2.6.39 kernel), so it could be with the Linux 2.6.40 kernel. It may also require updates to libva, the VA-API library.
This is nice to see Intel is actually working on support still for these older-generations of Intel graphics processors, but it's already long overdue. This quarter we do know Intel is expected to deliver VA-API accelerated video encoding support for Sandy Bridge, which should be quite interesting, if it is delivered on time.