trouble getting radeon to work

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trouble getting radeon to work

Postby debinst » 2009-09-19 05:57

I have a mainboard with onboard AMD Radeon graphics and I don't get it to work properly. All I get is the vesa driver. The xorg.conf file is pretty empty by default ("Configured Device", "Configured Monitor") and when I force the actual content to be there, then I can see the vesa configuration. Replacing the string "vesa" with "radeon" or "radeonhd" or "ati" does not work (X does not start then). Is there any package to get the (free) Radeon driver to work?
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Re: trouble getting radeon to work

Postby Soul Singin' » 2009-09-19 07:05

Post the output of:

Code: Select all
lspci | grep -i radeon


Mine is pretty old:

Code: Select all
[ Sat 19-Sep-2009  2.56 xxxx ] ~ $ lspci | grep -i radeon
01:00.0 VGA compatible controller: ATI Technologies Inc Radeon Mobility M6 LY


but it works with the default /etc/X11/xorg.conf configuration:

Code: Select all
Section "Device"
        Identifier      "Configured Video Device"
EndSection
.
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Re: trouble getting radeon to work

Postby debinst » 2009-09-19 12:48

Soul Singin' wrote:Post the output of:

Code: Select all
lspci | grep -i radeon

The output of that command is precisely nothing (empty string, if you will).

The output of
Code: Select all
lspci | grep -i radeonhd
is also empty. But the output of
Code: Select all
lspci | grep -i ati
includes the line
Code: Select all
01:05.0 VGA compatible controller: ATI Technologies Inc Device 9710


The mainboard has a AMD 785G chipset, which means it has a ATI Radeon HD 4200 graphics device onboard. And as I can see at http://developer.amd.com/drivers/pc_ven ... fault.aspx this graphics device indeed is called "9710" by AMD.

Mine is pretty old:

Code: Select all
[ Sat 19-Sep-2009  2.56 xxxx ] ~ $ lspci | grep -i radeon
01:00.0 VGA compatible controller: ATI Technologies Inc Radeon Mobility M6 LY


but it works with the default /etc/X11/xorg.conf configuration:

Code: Select all
Section "Device"
        Identifier      "Configured Video Device"
EndSection
.


I had such xorg.conf too, and I don't like it much. Mainly because it does not run the ati/radeon/radeonhd driver for me, it runs vesa.
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Re: trouble getting radeon to work

Postby Bulkley » 2009-09-19 14:13

First, have you checked your BIOS configuration? With onboard hardware, you never know unless you look.

To get ATI acceleration you need to add mesa and dri.

What does glxinfo tell you?
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Re: trouble getting radeon to work

Postby Soul Singin' » 2009-09-19 14:21

I'm sorry. I made a mistake. I should have told you to check the output of:
Code: Select all
lspci -nn | grep ATI

The -nn flag also prints the vendor and device IDs, which can then be checked against Debian's Device Database.

debinst wrote:Replacing the string "vesa" with "radeon" or "radeonhd" or "ati" does not work (X does not start then). Is there any package to get the (free) Radeon driver to work?

How are you adding the driver to your /etc/X11/xorg.conf file?

Here's mine on a different machine:
Code: Select all
Section "Device"
        Identifier      "Generic Video Card"
        Driver          "ati"
##      Driver          "vesa"                ## stable ol' "vesa"
        BusID           "PCI:1:0:0"
        Option          "XAANoOffscreenPixmaps"  ## https://help.ubuntu.com/community/RadeonDriver
        Option          "BusType" "PCI"          ## Ubuntu community help
        Option          "AGPMode" "1"            ## Ubuntu community help
EndSection
.
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Re: trouble getting radeon to work

Postby debinst » 2009-09-19 15:27

Soul Singin' wrote:I'm sorry. I made a mistake. I should have told you to check the output of:
Code: Select all
lspci -nn | grep ATI

The -nn flag also prints the vendor and device IDs, which can then be checked against Debian's Device Database.


Code: Select all
#lspci -nn | grep ATI
01:05.0 VGA compatible controller [0300]: ATI Technologies Inc Device [1002:9710]


Debian's Device Database does not list "1002:9710" at all. It lists the number 9710 several times but these are all completely unrelated things by a company called "NetMos". There is nothing with "9710" after the ":". There are many entries that start with "1002:" and they are indeed all AMD graphics cards (mostly listed with the radeon and radeonhd drivers) but mine is not there. The last one on the list is "1002:9613". Also, the list seems to have onboard graphics only up to approximately "Radeon HD 3200 Graphics", whereas I have HD 4200.

Does that mean that my graphics chip is not supported yet?

Do I have to use the proprietary AMD driver (fglrx)?

Soul Singin' wrote:
debinst wrote:Replacing the string "vesa" with "radeon" or "radeonhd" or "ati" does not work (X does not start then). Is there any package to get the (free) Radeon driver to work?

How are you adding the driver to your /etc/X11/xorg.conf file?

Here's mine on a different machine:
Code: Select all
Section "Device"
        Identifier      "Generic Video Card"
        Driver          "ati"
##      Driver          "vesa"                ## stable ol' "vesa"
        BusID           "PCI:1:0:0"
        Option          "XAANoOffscreenPixmaps"  ## https://help.ubuntu.com/community/RadeonDriver
        Option          "BusType" "PCI"          ## Ubuntu community help
        Option          "AGPMode" "1"            ## Ubuntu community help
EndSection
.


Here's the section of my xorg.conf:
Code: Select all
Section "Device"
        #Option "ShadowFB" # [<bool>]
        #Option "DefaultRefresh"  #[<bool>]
        #Option "ModeSetClearScreen" # [<bool>]
        Identifier "Card0"
#        Driver "ati"         #does not work
#        Driver "radeon"         #does not work
#        Driver "radeonhd"         #does not work
        Driver "vesa"     #works
        VendorName  "ATI Technologies Inc"
        BoardName  "Unknown Board"
        BusID   "PCI:1:5:0"
EndSection


I'm a bit worried about the "Unknown Board" thing. But at least the OS knows it's an ATI graphics device.
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Re: trouble getting radeon to work

Postby Soul Singin' » 2009-09-19 15:42

Wow! You're really in uncharted territory. I googled:
Code: Select all
ATI  "1002 9710"

and only got two results.

debinst wrote:Do I have to use the proprietary AMD driver (fglrx)?

Give it a shot. Here are some tips from the Debian Wiki and from the Unofficial ATI Linux Driver Wiki.

debinst wrote:I'm a bit worried about the "Unknown Board" thing.

I wouldn't worry about it.
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Re: trouble getting radeon to work

Postby debinst » 2009-10-05 22:34

OK, I tried to install the proprietary ATI driver (fglrx). But no luck so far either.

First I tried the download version from the amd.com website (Catalyst version 9.9, which is the most current one at the time of this posting). I had a hard time with it:

I tried the "automatic install" option, followed by "aticonfig --initial" which works but badly so: it gives a running X server, but many programs (glxgears and maybe everything that tries to use OpenGL) don't run at all and just dump error messages.

Then I tried the option to generate distribution-specific packages (with the Catalyst 9.9 installer). I get 4 .debs. They don't install due to a conflict of fglrx-driver_8.85-1_amd64.deb with xserver-xorg-core. I can force the installation but there's clearly something wrong. And I don't get a properly running X server either.

Then I gave up on the Catalyst 9.9 that I got from AMD's web site and tried the fglrx stuff in the "non-free" section of the debian packages. It installs kinda OK, but the X server now doesn't run at all (nothing, just black screen). When I manually run "aticonfig --initial" I get "Segmentation fault".

So what can I do?
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Re: trouble getting radeon to work

Postby BioTube » 2009-10-05 23:19

What version of Debian are you running? The 4200 is newer than Lenny AFAIK, so you'll need at least a newer DDX(3D acceleration requires a whole slew of new things and even then isn't fully stable); you can find instructions for (all)that here. As for fglrx, it's probably built against newer software.
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Re: trouble getting radeon to work

Postby debinst » 2009-10-06 00:01

I'm running Debian lenny (5.0.3). I would have loved to run the free driver (radoen, radeonhd) but it does not work because it does not recognize my hardware at all. You are quite right that the 4200 is new.
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Re: trouble getting radeon to work

Postby Bulkley » 2009-10-06 00:31

debinst wrote:I'm running Debian lenny (5.0.3). I would have loved to run the free driver (radoen, radeonhd) but it does not work because it does not recognize my hardware at all. You are quite right that the 4200 is new.


I'm running Squeeze and the open-source ati driver includes the 4200. You nave to have the mesa libraries.

libgl1-mesa-dri
libgl1-mesa-glx
libgl1-mesa-dev
libglu1-mesa
mesa-utils
All version 7.5.1-1
xserver-xorg-video-radeon version 1:6.12.3-1

If you don't want these, you have to get the proprietary driver. That's your choice, upgrade to Squeeze or proprietary.
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Re: trouble getting radeon to work

Postby debinst » 2009-10-06 02:33

Bulkley wrote:I'm running Squeeze and the open-source ati driver includes the 4200.

Hey, great! I want to try that but not do a distro upgrade. Is there a way to just use the 4200 driver, mesa, and all that's required from squeeze and keep the rest from lenny?

By the way, how come squeeze supports the 4200 but it's not listed in the PCI DevicaDatabase http://wiki.debian.org/DeviceDatabase/PCI?
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Re: trouble getting radeon to work

Postby Bulkley » 2009-10-06 02:59

debinst wrote:Is there a way to just use the 4200 driver, mesa, and all that's required from squeeze and keep the rest from lenny?


Yes, it's called a mixed system. This forum has lots of threads on it. Browse through "Docs, Howtos, Tips & Tricks" or do a search. Be cautioned that mixing can induce problems.

You might try Lenny backport sources. These sort of bridge the gap between Lenny and Squeeze.
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Re: trouble getting radeon to work

Postby BioTube » 2009-10-06 22:18

Xorg isn't in backports; to get the new driver, you'll need to build it yourself(see radeonBuildHowTo; you should be able to build against the X in Lenny). You shouldn't have to build anything else unless you want KMS or 3D support, which require a whole new stack.
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Re: trouble getting radeon to work

Postby debinst » 2009-10-09 01:02

Now that I think about it, I see no reason to believe that a mixed system will overcome the installation problems. It cannot possibly give me a better or newer driver than the one from the AMD web site (Catalyst 9.9).

Fortunately, I found a way to use the latter (Catalyst 9.9) and get it to work. The solution was to get rid of absolutely everything on the system that came from the debian repo and had fglrx* in the name, whether conflicting with the Catalyst 9.9 version or not. After that, the 9.9-generated .debs (which then had versionn numbers 8.51-1, how idiotic) did install without errors.

I still have no OpenGL (glxgears and so), no games and of course no 3D, but at least something. I welcome any other suggestions to improve this, short of reinstalling half the operating system.

Does anyone else have a Radeon HD4200 onboard graphics (Chipset: AMD 785G / SB710) and ever got it to work under linux (any distribution)?
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