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Constantinos Maltezos 02-14-2008 04:01 AM

switching between X and the console
 
Okay, I wrote previously asking for advice on getting a black screen when I
try to switch to the console. I also get a corrupted screen and I don't know
if I mentioned it. I learned a little more and thought I'd share it.

Well, it turns out the problem is the accelerated ATI driver. On my Compaq
Presario V5000 laptop, I have an ATI Radeon Xpress 200 graphics chip. I
found the following page with release notes:

http://www2.ati.com/drivers/linux/linux_8.8.25.html

According to this page, the updated driver they're talking about changes the
following, among other things:

"Display corruption is no longer seen when switching between X-Windows and the
Linux text console, and back to X-Windows"

Now, the ATI driver that adept downloads when you specify to download
restricted stuff is version 8.37.6. So I downloaded the installer from ATI's
web site. Unfortunately, the file it gave me had version 8.455.2 and, as you
can tell from the URL mentioned above, the issue is fixed in the mysteriously
elusive 8.8.25.

Now if I can figure out a way to write to ATI via email (their web site really
isn't helping in this regard), I'll post here again with their answer. In
the meantime, I'm going to their support forum and posting there, though I
don't really expect anything out of that.

Cheers

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Larry Hartman 02-14-2008 01:00 PM

switching between X and the console
 
I read your other posts (Corrected) on this issue. I too have the dreaded ATI
X200 Mobility version. This issue may not be ATI at all. There is a known
bug that has existed for the past two buntu version concerning not being able
to switch to a usable console (ALT+F#). There is also a fix posted for this
bug. The bug exists in NVidia video cards as well.

The synopsis on the launchpad appears to be that buntu intentionally broke a
working part of the OS to sort out an issue with power mgt. I am skeptical
of this, as I can not conceive of any sane developer doing this type of fix.

Here is the bug# and subject line:

[Bug 129910] Re: Blank ttys when using vesafb (vga=xxx)

The following is a slightly modified sample of one of the most recent posts
for correcting this problem. I fixed my issue by following the same basic
steps. Hope this helps.

Larry

<quote from launchpad>

I changed around the display settings in /etc/usplash.conf to be:
xres=1024
yres=768
Then installed the proprietary fglrx drivers (in the process of this I had
need of a terminal when X would not start, only to find that those would not
work either! Only booting recovery console would *get a working terminal
thankfully.)

Fixed it with the following steps:
sudo apt-get install hwinfo
sudo hwinfo --framebuffer
looked through supported vga modes and found one I liked:
Mode 0x0323: 1024x768 (+4096), 32 bits

sudo vim /boot/grub/menu.lst
found my kernel line and added vga=0x0323
sudo grub-update

sudo vim /etc/initramfs-tools/modules
inserted:
fbcon
radeonfb

sudo vim /etc/modprobe.d/blacklist-framebuffer
un-blacklist the module by commenting out line:
#blacklist radeonfb
update the initramfs:
sudo update-initramfs -u -k all -v

Fixed with acceptable resolution and working usplash :D.

</quote from launchpad>

On Wednesday 13 February 2008 09:01:33 pm Constantinos Maltezos wrote:
> Okay, I wrote previously asking for advice on getting a black screen when I
> try to switch to the console. I also get a corrupted screen and I don't
> know if I mentioned it. I learned a little more and thought I'd share it.
>
> Well, it turns out the problem is the accelerated ATI driver. On my Compaq
> Presario V5000 laptop, I have an ATI Radeon Xpress 200 graphics chip. I
> found the following page with release notes:
>
> http://www2.ati.com/drivers/linux/linux_8.8.25.html
>
> According to this page, the updated driver they're talking about changes
> the following, among other things:
>
> "Display corruption is no longer seen when switching between X-Windows and
> the Linux text console, and back to X-Windows"
>
> Now, the ATI driver that adept downloads when you specify to download
> restricted stuff is version 8.37.6. So I downloaded the installer from
> ATI's web site. Unfortunately, the file it gave me had version 8.455.2
> and, as you can tell from the URL mentioned above, the issue is fixed in
> the mysteriously elusive 8.8.25.
>
> Now if I can figure out a way to write to ATI via email (their web site
> really isn't helping in this regard), I'll post here again with their
> answer. In the meantime, I'm going to their support forum and posting
> there, though I don't really expect anything out of that.
>
> Cheers


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