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Palhoto
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PostPosted: Sat May 18, 2013 6:36 pm    Post subject: Text Mode mixed with X.org ATI Drivers Reply with quote

Hi,

I was wondering if it is possible to get an x86 to boot and stay in 80x25 hardware text mode and be able to switch to the xorg ati driver, only when startx is called upon. How can it be done? I'm currently lost coming previously from a NVidia proprietary driver setup which used to work in this manner. Now I'm using an ATI card with the X.org drivers using modeset. My modeset understanding is quite messed up.

Any pointers are appreciated. Thanks.
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eccerr0r
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PostPosted: Sat May 18, 2013 8:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The problem is that likely the OSS driver is written in a way to depend on KMS - where the kernel changes video modes (honestly this is the right way to do things - the video hardware is hardware, and the kernel should be the driver that changes video modes.)

The nvidia driver does the video mode change in userspace via requiring setuid root to change video modes. This I think is an ugly way to do things. This is the same for the ATI proprietary drivers, requiring root as well to change modes.

What is specifically the problem with it changing to a graphical "text" mode? Is it causing mode issues? is it too slow (it shouldn't be that slow...) You can select a graphical 80x25 mode if you want, too, using the usual fbcon driver I believe.

I didn't find it way too slow and since I have it start up in X11 anyway it's moot. The Intel driver also requires KMS as well and has the same issue.
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Palhoto
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PostPosted: Sun May 19, 2013 11:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

eccerr0r wrote:
The problem is that likely the OSS driver is written in a way to depend on KMS - where the kernel changes video modes (honestly this is the right way to do things - the video hardware is hardware, and the kernel should be the driver that changes video modes.)


Got it, eccerr0r. Thanks.

eccerr0r wrote:
You can select a graphical 80x25 mode if you want, too, using the usual fbcon driver I believe.


I'll try it, thanks.

eccerr0r wrote:
What is specifically the problem with it changing to a graphical "text" mode? Is it causing mode issues? is it too slow (it shouldn't be that slow...)


It is basically for ongoing console/curses application testing directly on PC hardware text mode to ensure my text work environment works correctly on one of the most common of video modes available. I'd also eventually like to get three text mode and three fb ttys simultaneously on one boot, but that is another issue entirely. This comes from a survivalist/preparedness perspective.
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eccerr0r
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PostPosted: Sun May 19, 2013 1:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Whoops, trying to be a bit more clear here: fbcon and kms are different drivers, but they use the same API/interface to select modes.

You can use fbset to change modes in the command like using sys-apps/fbset, or the usual console mode boot command line options work (or options if you load in the KMS driver post-boot).

I've found kms fbcon to work fairly well, most of them exceeded my expectations for speed, that I just use KMS for those machines that need it for X11. It works just fine for fixing things when X11 breaks... Not the usual 80x25 but good enough.
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Palhoto
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PostPosted: Thu May 30, 2013 10:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

eccerr0r wrote:
Whoops, trying to be a bit more clear here[...]

Thanks eccerr0r for the added information.
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