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AMD 690G, Ubuntu 8.04 and RadeonHD: massive screen corruption

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  • AMD 690G, Ubuntu 8.04 and RadeonHD: massive screen corruption

    My mothers' box runs on Ubuntu 8.04 Hardy Heron (she mostly doesn't need the latest and greatest and I don't want her software to change all the time, so I've given her LTS).

    Now I've upgraded her hardware, and part of that is a mainboard with 690G chipset. So I've installed the xorg-xserver-video-radeonhd and xserver-xorg-video-radeonhd-dbg packages from tormodvolden (https://launchpad.net/~tormodvolden/+archive/ppa).

    I also ran the update-manager just to be sure. Unfortunately what I end up with is massive screen corruption. When I click, for example, the Gnome menu (Applications/Places/System), menu's can be seen building up from little pieces put into place at random. If you wait a few seconds the entire menu eventually gets completed. Like rain falling down, eventually making the entire surface wet. You also see corruption when scrolling with a browser.

    Disabling acceleration doesn't help, I've disabled it all. No difference at all. The memory is also ok.

    I ended up selecting the vesa driver. That doesn't show any corruption but that can't be the reason AMD opened up all those docs and specs, and I'm missing "some" features.

    How do I install the radeonhd driver (or anything that supports 2D acceleration and putting the monitor in standby) without corruption?

  • #2
    Are you saying that you get corruption even when acceleration is set to shadowfb ?
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    • #3
      I even get corruption when acceleration is set to none. (also tried shadowfb, again no difference).

      Mainboard is an MSI K9AG Neo2 Digital btw. Using D-sub/VGA output (monitor supports nothing better).
      Last edited by W3ird_N3rd; 11 June 2009, 05:20 PM.

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      • #4
        Something sounds wrong here. Can you pastebin your xorg log when running with radeonhd ?

        This actually sounds like it might be a display priority / watermark issue where the memory is not keeping up with the display pipe while drawing is happening. Does the corruption go away if you run at a much lower resolution ?

        If the problem persists even at low resolutions, and there isn't anything obvious in the log, it might be worth trying a current copy of the radeon driver to see if the results are any different. Sometimes that gives good clues.
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        • #5
          MSI K9AG Neo2 Digital btw
          I ran the radeonhd driver on this exact board and it worked fairly well (until the north bridge overheated and went south). IIRC, I was using Hardy as well. Just make sure you monitor the temp of the north bridge and check that the DVI/VGA connector's not loose.

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          • #6
            @W3ird_N3rd

            I get bad video with radeonhd when no EXA is used. The default for radeonhd seems disable accelleration in most cases, the default for radeon is accellerated. So if you want to use radeonhd be sure you have got

            Option "AccelMethod" "EXA"
            Option "DRI"

            in your Device section and use a new enough kernel (or updated drm modules) to be able to use dri.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by bridgman View Post
              Something sounds wrong here. Can you pastebin your xorg log when running with radeonhd ?
              http://pastebin.com/m351d0850
              This actually sounds like it might be a display priority / watermark issue where the memory is not keeping up with the display pipe while drawing is happening. Does the corruption go away if you run at a much lower resolution ?
              No. Same amount at 640x480.
              If the problem persists even at low resolutions, and there isn't anything obvious in the log, it might be worth trying a current copy of the radeon driver to see if the results are any different. Sometimes that gives good clues.
              I'll see, but I hope I can make a .deb package out of that, I don't want to mess up the packaging manager.
              Originally posted by DanL View Post
              I ran the radeonhd driver on this exact board and it worked fairly well (until the north bridge overheated and went south). IIRC, I was using Hardy as well. Just make sure you monitor the temp of the north bridge and check that the DVI/VGA connector's not loose.
              Corruption is even there right after booting it up, so temperature should not be the problem. I checked the VGA connector, but a loose VGA connector would not cause corruption like this.
              Originally posted by Kano View Post
              @W3ird_N3rd

              I get bad video with radeonhd when no EXA is used. The default for radeonhd seems disable accelleration in most cases, the default for radeon is accellerated. So if you want to use radeonhd be sure you have got

              Option "AccelMethod" "EXA"
              Option "DRI"

              in your Device section and use a new enough kernel (or updated drm modules) to be able to use dri.
              I guess they are not new enough, when I enable EXA all I see is garbage, 100% unusable. (most texts invisible, strange corruption, a menu is just a rectangle)

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              • #8
                I forget the name of the option, but there's one called something like "unsupported features"... whatever it is, try turning that off. I'll see if I can find it...

                EDIT - try Option "UnverifiedFeatures" "Off" in the device section of your conf file.
                Last edited by bridgman; 14 June 2009, 09:38 PM.
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                • #9
                  Originally posted by W3ird_N3rd View Post
                  I'll see, but I hope I can make a .deb package out of that, I don't want to mess up the packaging manager.
                  Why don't you just install the xorg-xserver-video-ati and xorg-xserver-video-radeon packages from the same PPA? If you remove the -radeonhd packages, X will use the -ati/-radeon driver.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by bridgman View Post
                    I forget the name of the option, but there's one called something like "unsupported features"... whatever it is, try turning that off. I'll see if I can find it...

                    EDIT - try Option "UnverifiedFeatures" "Off" in the device section of your conf file.
                    I don't know what features that disables, but it does take the corruption away.
                    Originally posted by tormod View Post
                    Why don't you just install the xorg-xserver-video-ati and xorg-xserver-video-radeon packages from the same PPA? If you remove the -radeonhd packages, X will use the -ati/-radeon driver.
                    That also worked.

                    At least the display can now go into standby again. But I am a little sad to find out the xv acceleration does not work yet. No huge deal for my mother luckily, but still. The open "nv" driver is often mocked at, but at least offers the NV video blitter for XV. I guess it would be possible to somehow compile DRM/DRI modules or something, but that doesn't seem as simple as selecting "nv" for a driver. Hopefully this will get better in the future.

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