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[HOWTO] Quickly switch between open Radeon driver and fglrx
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Chewi
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Joined: 01 Sep 2003
Posts: 769
Location: Edinburgh, Scotland

PostPosted: Wed Dec 26, 2012 6:21 pm    Post subject: [HOWTO] Quickly switch between open Radeon driver and fglrx Reply with quote

I left fglrx behind for the open Radeon driver nearly three years ago. I couldn't get shot of it fast enough, it was buggy and unstable, and I swore I'd never install it again. I even stared at the xorg-server source for an entire weekend just so I could fix a nasty bug that was preventing me from switching.

With a heavy heart, I've just gone back on my word. With all these cool games coming out lately, I just couldn't resist it any more. r600g is really taking shape but it's been a long time coming and I think it'll be at least another year before the performance will be adequate for many of these games. I can't fault its stability though and I didn't want to sacrifice that.

Unlike other distributions, Gentoo can install the fglrx and open Radeon drivers alongside each other, thanks to eselect opengl, but obviously you can only use one at a time. To make matters worse, fglrx can't be used while the open kernel modules are loaded, and older devices only support older versions of xorg-server.

I didn't want to be forced to downgrade xorg-server and as I'm usually short on time, if it was too fiddly to switch between the two, I knew I'd never bother doing it in practise. I set out to find an optimal way and wrote up the results on the wiki. Hope this helps someone!
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