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Old 12-24-2007, 12:51 AM
Dave Stevens
 
Default ATI graphics in F7

Hi,

I have a F7 box using an ATI 1600 board. I am happy with the board but
confused about drivers. When I set up F7 I added Livna as a repository. I
currently have the ATI catalyst 8.42.3 driver. I would like to be able to use
the hardware on the video card to get smooth graphics in normal desktop use.

When F7 was first set up the default desktop graphics stank. No fancy stuff,
either, just moving and resizing windows routinely did not give smooth
motion. Scrolling text worked better, but not what I hoped. I basically think
a modern computer (a dual core opteron with 2G RAM) should be able to do
better than a 386 DOS box and maybe it did but it was a close thing.

Using the instructions at http://www.fedorafaq.org/f7/#radeon I made some
headway. I don't know any good simple test suite for measuring graphics
capability in Fedora, so for lack of some better metric I used glxgears to
see how many frames I'd get. Well, after initial install I got about 600 fps.
Then I used the ATI driver and got about 5000 fps. The subjective view more
or less corresponds to what you'd expect from this ratio. I have not been
able to enable desktop effects. I don't know why, when I click on the
deceptively labelled button that says, "enable desktop effects" what I get
instead is a lot of screen wiggling and a highly informative error message
that says, "desktop effects could not be enabled." True no doubt, but less
useful than I would have wished.

Yesterday I downloaded and burned an iso of mandriva 2008 one (a live cd),
just to see. After figuring out that the terminal was called Konsole I ran
glxgears and got a figure of about 10,000 fps. The desktop came up with
desktop effects enabled by default and everything was pretty smooth.

I have in the past tried quite hard to figure out what is the best free driver
setup to use and to actually install and use one. But the performance of what
I could achieve was pathetic and the process was painful. Do people have
opinions about

1 a good simple test of graphics capabilities for a Fedora install?
2 the likelihood that Fedora will have comparable performance to Mandriva (or
any other similar distribution) any time soon?
3 Is the ATI disclosure of their software internals going to result in the
RadeonHD driver getting better? or when?

Many thanks.

Dave


--
There is no single government agency that views sustainability through a broad
lens, taking into account the values of the people affected by government
decisions. Any model of sustainability that is driven solely by an economi
engine is deficient if it is incapable of taking into account social values.

Mr. Justice David Vickers, BC Supreme Court in Tsilhqot'in Nation v. British
Columbia,2007

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Old 12-24-2007, 01:29 AM
Jim Cornette
 
Default ATI graphics in F7

Dave Stevens wrote:
Yesterday I downloaded and burned an iso of mandriva 2008 one (a live cd),
just to see. After figuring out that the terminal was called Konsole I ran
glxgears and got a figure of about 10,000 fps. The desktop came up with
desktop effects enabled by default and everything was pretty smooth.


I have in the past tried quite hard to figure out what is the best free driver
setup to use and to actually install and use one. But the performance of what
I could achieve was pathetic and the process was painful. Do people have
opinions about


1 a good simple test of graphics capabilities for a Fedora install?
2 the likelihood that Fedora will have comparable performance to Mandriva (or
any other similar distribution) any time soon?
3 Is the ATI disclosure of their software internals going to result in the
RadeonHD driver getting better? or when?


Many thanks.

Dave





Since both distributions are rpm based, some sort of mixed system could
be possible. You might check to see what packages Mandriva are using and
grab the source rpms and rebuild for a Fedora system. Also there might
be ready made repositories that have the components needed for better
video.
Also a warning: Do not attempt the rawhide versions now though. The
builds are using a different version of X and would crash. I tried the
updates-testing on a rawhide system and can confirm they are
incompatible builds.
You are right that the desktop effects for the F8 ati driver are pretty
useless. I disabled the effects because of the problems and use
metacity, then and now with rawhide.


Jim

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Old 12-24-2007, 01:29 AM
Craig White
 
Default ATI graphics in F7

On Sun, 2007-12-23 at 17:51 -0800, Dave Stevens wrote:
> Hi,
>
> I have a F7 box using an ATI 1600 board. I am happy with the board but
> confused about drivers. When I set up F7 I added Livna as a repository. I
> currently have the ATI catalyst 8.42.3 driver. I would like to be able to use
> the hardware on the video card to get smooth graphics in normal desktop use.
>
> When F7 was first set up the default desktop graphics stank. No fancy stuff,
> either, just moving and resizing windows routinely did not give smooth
> motion. Scrolling text worked better, but not what I hoped. I basically think
> a modern computer (a dual core opteron with 2G RAM) should be able to do
> better than a 386 DOS box and maybe it did but it was a close thing.
>
> Using the instructions at http://www.fedorafaq.org/f7/#radeon I made some
> headway. I don't know any good simple test suite for measuring graphics
> capability in Fedora, so for lack of some better metric I used glxgears to
> see how many frames I'd get. Well, after initial install I got about 600 fps.
> Then I used the ATI driver and got about 5000 fps. The subjective view more
> or less corresponds to what you'd expect from this ratio. I have not been
> able to enable desktop effects. I don't know why, when I click on the
> deceptively labelled button that says, "enable desktop effects" what I get
> instead is a lot of screen wiggling and a highly informative error message
> that says, "desktop effects could not be enabled." True no doubt, but less
> useful than I would have wished.
>
> Yesterday I downloaded and burned an iso of mandriva 2008 one (a live cd),
> just to see. After figuring out that the terminal was called Konsole I ran
> glxgears and got a figure of about 10,000 fps. The desktop came up with
> desktop effects enabled by default and everything was pretty smooth.
>
> I have in the past tried quite hard to figure out what is the best free driver
> setup to use and to actually install and use one. But the performance of what
> I could achieve was pathetic and the process was painful. Do people have
> opinions about
>
> 1 a good simple test of graphics capabilities for a Fedora install?
> 2 the likelihood that Fedora will have comparable performance to Mandriva (or
> any other similar distribution) any time soon?
> 3 Is the ATI disclosure of their software internals going to result in the
> RadeonHD driver getting better? or when?
----
1. I don't know...other than glxgears that you already know about.

2. It should have that now

3. I am unclear about your references. Xorg includes their own 'radeon'
driver which is not accelerated and not 3d. I struggled with F8's xorg
version of the radeon driver but it seemed to work reasonably well on F7
but perhaps there was an update in F7 that brought it on a par with F8.

ATi released their closed source, binary only driver which is what you
are referring to it appears but only they have control over that. I
would believe that you could use the same driver whether you were using
Mandriva, Fedora or whatever so it seems unlikely that there should be
any performance difference between distributions. You may find it useful
to examine the xorg.conf file in both setups to see what the differences
might be.

nVidia has definitely spent more energy on Linux drivers and sooner on
Linux than has ATi so they seem to lag behind. One would expect that as
they live up to previously unfulfilled commitments to integration with
the open source world that their drivers will improve.

Craig

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Old 12-24-2007, 02:11 AM
Konstantin Svist
 
Default ATI graphics in F7

Dave Stevens wrote:

1 a good simple test of graphics capabilities for a Fedora install?



glxgears is not a benchmark, but it will give you the general feel. You
should also check what your CPU usage is, while glxgears is running (if
doing rendering in software, you'll see 100% cpu usage - otherwise,
either no spike or the framerate will be very high, like you saw with fglrx)


2 the likelihood that Fedora will have comparable performance to Mandriva (or
any other similar distribution) any time soon?



Performance doesn't depend on the linux distro. You should get about the
same performance with any of them.
If you meant "when will `enable desktop effects` work?" then the answer
is that it works right now, with latest fglrx and manually-installed
compiz/etc. I don't remember the magic combination, but I got it running
once (though I haven't used it since).


3 Is the ATI disclosure of their software internals going to result in the
RadeonHD driver getting better? or when?



ATI is not planning to disclose its software internals. What they're
disclosing is the hardware specifications, so that software can be
written for it. Problems are:
* they're only releasing the recent hardware specs. If your chipset is
pretty old, don't expect radeonhd to be a silver bullet.
* so far, they have only released enough specs to perform
mode/resolution changes. 2D and 3D acceleration are both on hold until
more information is released. Worse, they have so far only promised to
release those some time in 2008. Nobody knows how soon that will happen,
and some believe it might never happen.



see http://www.phoronix.com/forums/showthread.php?t=7021 for a good
account of current state of affairs.



HTH


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Old 12-24-2007, 07:14 PM
Dave Stevens
 
Default ATI graphics in F7

On Sunday 23 December 2007 07:11:01 pm Konstantin Svist wrote:
> Dave Stevens wrote:
> > 1 a good simple test of graphics capabilities for a Fedora install?
>
> glxgears is not a benchmark, but it will give you the general feel. You
> should also check what your CPU usage is, while glxgears is running (if
> doing rendering in software, you'll see 100% cpu usage - otherwise,
> either no spike or the framerate will be very high, like you saw with
> fglrx)
>
> > 2 the likelihood that Fedora will have comparable performance to Mandriva
> > (or any other similar distribution) any time soon?
>
> Performance doesn't depend on the linux distro. You should get about the
> same performance with any of them.
> If you meant "when will `enable desktop effects` work?" then the answer
> is that it works right now, with latest fglrx and manually-installed
> compiz/etc. I don't remember the magic combination, but I got it running
> once (though I haven't used it since).
>
> > 3 Is the ATI disclosure of their software internals going to result in
> > the RadeonHD driver getting better? or when?
>
> ATI is not planning to disclose its software internals. What they're
> disclosing is the hardware specifications, so that software can be
> written for it. Problems are:
> * they're only releasing the recent hardware specs. If your chipset is
> pretty old, don't expect radeonhd to be a silver bullet.
> * so far, they have only released enough specs to perform
> mode/resolution changes. 2D and 3D acceleration are both on hold until
> more information is released. Worse, they have so far only promised to
> release those some time in 2008. Nobody knows how soon that will happen,
> and some believe it might never happen.
>
>
> see http://www.phoronix.com/forums/showthread.php?t=7021 for a good
> account of current state of affairs.
>
>
> HTH

yes, all replies helped. This morning (west coast NA) I ran yum update and got
a new ATI driver - 8.43.3 that bumped up the frame rate a percent or so and
also partly enabled desktop effects - now my windows wobble although I don't
have cubed workspaces. Still, not too shabby. I guess I will just wait for F9
and see what develops there. Thanks for the link to the Phoronix thread, very
informative.

Dave



--
There is no single government agency that views sustainability through a broad
lens, taking into account the values of the people affected by government
decisions. Any model of sustainability that is driven solely by an economic
engine is deficient if it is incapable of taking into account social values.

Mr. Justice David Vickers, BC Supreme Court in Tsilhqot'in Nation v. British
Columbia,2007

--
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fedora-list@redhat.com
To unsubscribe: https://www.redhat.com/mailman/listinfo/fedora-list
 

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