dslreports logo
site
 
    All Forums Hot Topics Gallery
spc

spacer




how-to block ads


Search Topic:
uniqs
2019
share rss forum feed


Selenia
I love Debian
Premium
join:2006-09-22
Fort Smith, AR
kudos:2

{Rant} ATI/AMD

So, I have a slightly less than 2 year old Toshiba Laptop with a dual core CPU, 6 gigs of RAM, and an ATI Radeon HD4200 Mobility graphics card. It performs well for my day to day tasks. The Realtek wireless was flaky, at times(not all the time), but an update to the realtek-firmware package backported to Debian Stable made it rock solid.

Now on to the bad. I started with the Debian-provided fglrx driver for the HD4200 card within(most decent spec decent price laptops have ATI). 3D performed well enough, but it was full of bugs. Most notable was having to restart KDM/xserver after quitting an OpenGL app because the desktop corrupted. So, I try the open source "radeon" driver. The card is fussy about driver version vs firmware version, but it works almost as good as fglrx without the bugs. Only thing is only certain X versions work well. The situation is livable but I wanted to push the card to its fullest.

So, I download the ATI-provided fglrx(hearing how much better it is). I prepare my dependencies then fire up the install script. It tells me the card is not supported?! Not supported!!! They silently did this. Nowhere on their crappy site does it say my card is unsupported!! In fact, they still sell this chipset. Unbelievable!! This is a middle of the line laptop, not a bargain basement and ATI screws our pooch in under 2 years. They get support almost there and drop it in a short time, never to support newer kernels or X versions. This reminds me too much of my X1950PRO XGE. Support was terrible, slow, buggy, then dropped when the card was less than 1 year old. Only the alpha-then Gallium3D drivers saved that card from being a doorstop by making it useful with 2D/3D acceleration, though that driver required tremendous effort to compile/install. Ubuntu helped us Debian users by giving us a PPA with sources that are easier to recompile for Debian than pure upstream. Satisfactory solution, though not easy, and should have been provided by the idiots that made the card.

Seriously ATI? You expect us to switch cards every 6 months to 2 years and to keep buying your crap when you can't even make support good before then? Yet, you expect us to buy new graphics cards while sticking with running ancient xserver and kernel versions? Seriously. F*** you, ATI/AMD!! You have lost yet another customer who spends less money on software(open source) and tends to allocate more to hardware. I was reluctant about this time around, but the laptop was a good deal and I got it running good, no thanks to you. Otherwise, I would have gone with NVidia that time too.

Thank you for listening. Posted rant here because I feel some Linux users somewhere must feel my pain of being screwed by this company. Encourage your fellow newbies you help migrate to Linux to avoid ATI cards, at all costs!!
--
A fool thinks they know everything.

A wise person knows enough to know they couldn't possibly know everything.

There are zealots for every OS, like every religion. They do not represent the majority of users for either.

TuxRaiderPen

join:2009-09-19
said by Selenia:
the HD4200 card within(most decent spec decent price laptops have ATI).
Afraid I would disagree with that... but then I look for nVidia only laptops, and then they must BE AMD CPU.

I only purchase outside of this nVidia Graphics, AMD CPU if I don't find an acceptable product... personal boxes are built from parts, agency servers etc. all come from OEM's because they want the warranty from the OEM for what good it is... Since they won't pay for onsite service etc... any way so its left to source parts and repair to me any way... but what ever...

said by Selenia:
So, I download the ATI-provided fglrx(hearing how much better it is). I prepare my dependencies then fire up the install script. It tells me the card is not supported?! Not supported!!! They silently did this. Nowhere on their crappy site does it say my card is unsupported!! In fact, they still sell this chipset. Unbelievable!! This is a middle of the line laptop, not a bargain basement and ATI screws our pooch in under 2 years.

Seriously ATI? You expect us to switch cards every 6 months to 2 years and to keep buying your crap when you can't even make support good before then? Yet, you expect us to buy new graphics cards while sticking with running ancient xserver and kernel versions? Seriously. F*** you, ATI/AMD!! You have lost yet another customer who spends less money on software(open source) and tends to allocate more to hardware. I was reluctant about this time around, but the laptop was a good deal and I got it running good, no thanks to you. Otherwise, I would have gone with NVidia that time too.

Thank you for listening. Posted rant here because I feel some Linux users somewhere must feel my pain of being screwed by this company. Encourage your fellow newbies you help migrate to Linux to avoid ATI cards, at all costs!!
Your not alone been there done that with crApTI on Dell boxes that were only 1 year old....

nVidia is a little better in supporting older hardware, but they pulled the same stunt right after crApTI started doing it... **PERSONALLY** I think its BS... I've heard all the lame excuses about supporting this and that hardware past xyz... since I don't use non Linux OS.. I don't know that they do this with the OEM drivers on non Linux OS, I seriously doubt it....

One of the benefits of Linux *has been* that older hardware was supported and could be removed from dumpsters, literally, put back in service running as LAMP, VPN, LTS etc, servers... Linux itself has done much to errode this, ie: dropping 386 support, drivers like this removing support, while not an issue for a server, an LTS desktop using commuinty drivers, NO THANKS! When an LTS desktop is pulling its desktop from a server it needs to have a decent graphics system with good support from the drivers.

I have a bunch of systems that were stuck with some cRApDEON that had to have onboard video disabled and new cards put in, nVidia, to fix this issue...it was a cost that I shouldn't, one had to spend, or two justify to spend. It nearly killed the project!

Linux is now pushing this mantra of pushing newer hardware that doesn't need to be.. One of the reasons that pushed me hard towards Linux when I was still misguided by the Flavorade was a simple issue with a sound card.. worked great under Linux.. under the supposed greatest OS of the world it did nothing but sputter, crackle etc... pathetic... that and that a clunky 486 with about half the RAM of the time, it was a real Franken-box put together from parts of older builds and expansion to the MB limits, ran better than a recent build under another crap OS... that pretty much solidified my move to Linux, a few laters after some other BS.. cold turkey switch... have not looked back, what 10+ years, , later... I couldn't do that today with a recent Linux distro... I did all kinds of things with that from XDMCP sessions to loads that no non Linux box in GUI with those specs could keep up with...
--
1311393600 - Back to Black.....Black....Black....


timcuth
Braves Fan
Premium
join:2000-09-18
Pelham, AL
Reviews:
·Charter
·AT&T Southeast
said by TuxRaiderPen:



One of the benefits of Linux *has been* that older hardware was supported and could be removed from dumpsters, literally, put back in service running as LAMP, VPN, LTS etc, servers... Linux itself has done much to errode this, ie: dropping 386 support, drivers like this removing support, while not an issue for a server, an LTS desktop using commuinty drivers, NO THANKS! When an LTS desktop is pulling its desktop from a server it needs to have a decent graphics system with good support from the drivers.

Linux is not the problem. The Linux-supplied open source radeon driver will still support the older cards. It is the proprietary AMD-supplied fglrx driver that stopped supporting them.

Tim
--
"Life is like this long line, except at the end there ain't no merry-go-round." - Arthur on The King of Queens
~ Project Hope ~

TuxRaiderPen

join:2009-09-19
said by timcuth:
Linux is not the problem. The Linux-supplied open source radeon driver will still support the older cards. It is the proprietary AMD-supplied fglrx driver that stopped supporting them.
You misread it... no where does my post state anything about CRAPdeon drivers dropping support.. it states that "community drivers... NO THANKS... " ie: the systems in question could not use the OEM drivers as they should due to the idiotic nonsense the poster posted about... it was an added expense and huge blow up over for this project....to replace the cards and then rebuild the base image with nVidia drivers...
--
1311393600 - Back to Black.....Black....Black....


Maxo
Your tax dollars at work.
Premium,VIP
join:2002-11-04
Tallahassee, FL
reply to TuxRaiderPen
I agree. Purchasing an ATI/AMD card is a lesson in frustration. My nvidia card is over 5 years old and still performs just great with the latest vendor-supplied drivers. I only purchase machines with nvidia and Intel GPUs. In my experience if you don't need to game or do other 3D stuff machines with an Intel graphics card work just great.


shdesigns
Powered By Infinite Improbabilty Drive
Premium
join:2000-12-01
Stone Mountain, GA
Reviews:
·EarthLink
·Comcast
·Atlantic Nexus
reply to Selenia
These types of problems is why I swapped my ATI card in my laptop with an nVidia one.

The ATI card was a bit faster but the driver bugs drove me crazy, even in windows.

If you laptop was also offered with an nVidia option, check ebay for a pulled card, the come cheap.
--
Scott Henion

Embedded Systems Consultant,
SHDesigns home - DIY Welder


randomlinux

@suddenlink.net
reply to Selenia
I understand your frustration. I have a second laptop with a 4250 and I was very surprised when I took Ubuntu 12.10 for a spin and suddenly realized there are no video drivers for it.

I totally get they don't want to support older hardware, but the 4 series is still a very capable GPU.


timcuth
Braves Fan
Premium
join:2000-09-18
Pelham, AL
Reviews:
·Charter
·AT&T Southeast
reply to TuxRaiderPen
I beg to disagree, I did not misread it. Your paragraph started, "One of the benefits of Linux *has been* that older hardware was supported..."

Maybe I misread your intent, but not what you said.

Tim
--
"Life is like this long line, except at the end there ain't no merry-go-round." - Arthur on The King of Queens
~ Project Hope ~


Selenia
I love Debian
Premium
join:2006-09-22
Fort Smith, AR
kudos:2

1 recommendation

reply to randomlinux
It is supported by the open source drivers. You might have to download the nonfree firmware for the ATI graphics card. I am not complaining about Linux, just ATI's lackluster support for their own devices.

TuxRaiderPen

join:2009-09-19
reply to timcuth
said by timcuth:
I beg to disagree, I did not misread it. Your paragraph started, "One of the benefits of Linux *has been* that older hardware was supported..."

Maybe I misread your intent, but not what you said.
You misread it, misunderstood, misinferred, and more...
--
1311393600 - Back to Black.....Black....Black....


intok

join:2012-03-15
reply to Selenia
Just update your system to get more recent builds of the R600 Gallium3D driver. Been using it with my HD3650 on Mint 13 and have yet to have any system instability problems even though I'm running the latest Kernel, XServer and Mesa builds from GIT.


Selenia
I love Debian
Premium
join:2006-09-22
Fort Smith, AR
kudos:2
It was my X1950 PRO XGE that was compatible with it. Far as I know, the HD4200 isn't. Stuck with the open "radeon" driver. 3D works pretty good. Just imagine with a proper OEM driver. Firmware required to achieve proper acceleration.


derperson

@cmsu.edu
reply to Selenia
AMD stopped supporting the 4000 series last year.

Kearnstd
Space Elf
Premium
join:2002-01-22
Mullica Hill, NJ
kudos:1
reply to Selenia
that is the AMD/ATI main flaw though. I just looked at the Nvidia website and their latest 64bit Linux driver supports as far back as the 8000 series. which is a pretty damn old video card.
--
[65 Arcanist]Filan(High Elf) Zone: Broadband Reports


intok

join:2012-03-15
reply to Selenia
Yeah, well your HD4200 IGP works with the OSS drivers just as well as my HD3650.

Either way, don't expect to play ANY games that require 3D on that IGP outside of QuakeLive, World Of Padman or Smokin' Guns, the HD4200 wasn't capable of much even with FGLRX.

Grab this and install, well, everything. »launchpad.net/~xorg-edgers/+archive/ppa


Selenia
I love Debian
Premium
join:2006-09-22
Fort Smith, AR
kudos:2
I think I would have to recompile all the packages there, to make them work with Debian, just as I did for the chromium ppa using apt-get source then fetching dependencies and building. Funny thing is I set my Debian system to upgrade to packages from backports, where available, to keep a stable base but newer packages(and any breakage likely in user, not kernel space). I upgraded my xserver to that version and it broke my X with this card. The libmesa-dri from backports alone breaks hardware acceleration on this card. Used my apt preferences file to hold stable version, which works very well. Was just hoping making OEM work would give better WINE and DirectX support. I can play extreme tux racer with all effects but FSAA(makes it crash) on and get a very good framerate. PSX emulators also fared well. OpenGL performance is not so much an issue in my current version. Just wanted DirectX for WINE, too(poorly supported in open source driver).
--
A fool thinks they know everything.

A wise person knows enough to know they couldn't possibly know everything.

There are zealots for every OS, like every religion. They do not represent the majority of users for either.


Selenia
I love Debian
Premium
join:2006-09-22
Fort Smith, AR
kudos:2

3 edits
reply to intok
Click for full size
OK update...

Dri2, updated xserver, and the backported mesa-gl1-dri are not broken, after all. A tad buggy, yes. Most can be dealt with and the new setup supports more OpenGL extensions than before. The problem I was having stems from the dependency tree. I stumbled upon a newer kernel(3.2) in backports. The naming scheme had changed, so it was not pulled as an update until I installed a virtual package that did not come stock in Debian Squeeze. I got interested and pulled it, keeping my old kernel in case of breakage. Pulled the new X and OpenGL components again. This time they worked out of the box. The only issue was buggy compositing in kwin. Setting OpenGL, Shared memory, and Nearest Texture filter squashed all but occasional tearing(not really bothersome) and allowed games to run with it on, like before. Given reports I seen on other FOSS drivers in kwin, I have a feeling kwin is to blame, as kwin settings mostly fixed things. So, kernel 3.2 should be listed as a dependency for the package, but isn't. Thus, your package manager won't pull it as one. I hope this helps some of the people on the internet who can never seem to get the backported xserver, Dri2, and Mesa to work

Edit: Another update: I am pretty stoked right now. Just paid more attention to my glxinfo and noticed why I needed different settings to make compositing work properly. Maybe why I needed to upgrade kernels. Newer X versions are known to autoselect drivers and I found it selected something different! Check out my OpenGL renderer string in glxinfo. Yes!! It's Gallium3D. People who run contribute to Squeeze backports, even though you screwed the pooch on neglecting to list kernel 3.2 as a possible dependency(or at least recommended package, if this is not needed for all drivers), I am thoroughly impressed you packaged Gallium3D in such an easy to install package. I was also unaware that Gallium3D had progressed to supporting this chipset. I had a hell of a time compiling it from source from the Ubuntu PPA for my X1950 PRO XGE(R570) back in the day, even though I eventually won and got it to work. Great job, guys! Cheers!! I am a happy camper. Have Gallium3D working on Debian stable with no need to ever go through that hellish compile process ever again

Edit2: I spoke too soon. While the settings above stopped some nasty screen corruption on some full screen 3D games when going back to composite desktop, many still flickered, etc. Set vertical resolution to 720(leaves a tiny trace of black border) in config files of 3D games and all runs perfect. Set desktop back to Opengl/trilinear/texture from pixmap and it works without the taering and now no screen corruption. 3D performance is amazing compared to what I have previously seen with this card. I keep turning up extreme tux racer and can't make it lag any. I will put up with a barely noticeable black border in 3D fullscreen games for that performance.Chew on that, ATI!!!! I am not changing hardware due to artificial lack of support on your end. I change hardware when I need the increased capability for stuff I do.

Word of warning: Driver bug! Keep horizontal resolution same as Desktop or you will have a nasty X crash. A workaround I used to do for this ancient gallium bug is set a shortcut to a script that fires xrandr then the game and then fires it again to restore normal resolution when game exits. That is, if you want to or need to run a game in a lower resolution. This bug is still present, but is not a show stopper as you can automate mitigating it. At native resolution, it does not rear its ugly head.
--
A fool thinks they know everything.

A wise person knows enough to know they couldn't possibly know everything.

There are zealots for every OS, like every religion. They do not represent the majority of users for either.

xrobertcmx
Premium
join:2001-06-18
Sterling, VA
Reviews:
·Verizon FiOS
reply to TuxRaiderPen
I have a box with a 3 year old Athlon II X3 and the HD4200 was the onboard graphics. When I recently upgraded it to the A10-5700 I refurbished it for a family member. The HD4200 is only supported under Win 7 using the legacy Driver from July of last year.
--
I voted for Snoopy!

xrobertcmx
Premium
join:2001-06-18
Sterling, VA
Reviews:
·Verizon FiOS
reply to TuxRaiderPen
I should also mention the horrible experience that is Optimus under Linux or Windows.
I have a choice of HD3000 or fighting with bumblebee in Linux or playing Russian Roulette in Windows with which graphics card is going to engage.
I had an E-350 based netbook that worked flawlessly with both OpenSuSE an Kubuntu. Sure, it couldn't play HD video, but neither can the Intel chip.
--
I voted for Snoopy!


Selenia
I love Debian
Premium
join:2006-09-22
Fort Smith, AR
kudos:2
I got pretty far with 3d acceleration with the gallium drivers, both with ATI and Nouveau for NVidia. My configuration has been pretty stable so I will post a how to soon. Open GL flies.

yazdzik
Premium,MVM
join:2000-07-26
Honesdale, PA
kudos:1

1 edit
reply to xrobertcmx
Dear Friends,

Dell for all their inadequacy in many things have a disable option for optimus in the latitude/precision series laptops bios. The very though of a workaround called bumblebee kept me ATI loyal.

As has been noted in the boldened "has been", supra, linux based operating systems used to have, in both proprietary and OS drivers, a predilection for the antique and simple. No more.

Dell, in a strange warranty move sent me an nvdia card to replace my one year old ATI card on a precision laptop.

Apt be praised, after running the ati uninstall script, apt-getting the latest nvidia from debian, "latest" being a very loose term here, it was a five minute affair to change GPU.

How things have changed from the days of building from source and installing. Not sure why, but it seems to me for all the progress in performance, we seem to have a certain increase in perverse functionality as well. Not sure why. Preferred the "snappier" feel of the ATI card - do not miss the freezes then hard power downs and fscking the data drive.

Best,
M
--
Life is a series of return dates. There is but one final argument, its eloquence determines who we were, and whether who we were had meaning.

TuxRaiderPen

join:2009-09-19
reply to xrobertcmx
said by xrobertcmx:
I should also mention the horrible experience that is Optimus under Linux or Windows.
I have a choice of HD3000 or fighting with bumblebee in Linux or playing Russian Roulette in Windows with which graphics card is going to engage.
I had an E-350 based netbook that worked flawlessly with both OpenSuSE an Kubuntu. Sure, it couldn't play HD video, but neither can the Intel chip.
This whole optimus issue I lay at the equipment OEM's. Its a stupid idea, period. Avoid purchasing hardware which uses that cluster mess. Regardless of OS.

As for the other comment. I've stated before, nVidia took the cue from crapti and started removing support for older cards. Its stupid, period, and it hurts one of Linux's main attributes using older hardware to do things that require massive amounts of extra CPU, RAM, graphics on newer systems using the "alleged" "superior 'OS'."
--
1311393600 - Back to Black.....Black....Black....


El Quintron
Resident Mouth Breather
Premium
join:2008-04-28
Etobicoke, ON
kudos:4
reply to Selenia
I'm going to start following this thread, seeing as I just built an HTPC with shiny new 7970, so I'm interested in the news.
--
Support Bacteria -- It's the Only Culture Some People Have


intok

join:2012-03-15
reply to TuxRaiderPen
Optimus was basically Nvidia's last hope to have volume sales in the laptop market.

With Intel's GPUs finally hitting the level of acceptable, and AMD's APUs gaining more ground Nvidia has nowhere to go but the high end mobile GPU market with Optimus.


El Quintron
Resident Mouth Breather
Premium
join:2008-04-28
Etobicoke, ON
kudos:4
Reviews:
·TekSavvy Cable
·TekSavvy DSL
said by intok:

Optimus was basically Nvidia's last hope to have volume sales in the laptop market.

With Intel's GPUs finally hitting the level of acceptable, and AMD's APUs gaining more ground Nvidia has nowhere to go but the high end mobile GPU market with Optimus.

Optimus isn't high end, it's trying to do high end, and low end at once, by coordinating 2 GPUs via software, there's a difference there.

Someone who needs to game on a laptop is going to get a small form laptop GPU and be done with it, Optimus provides no advantage to the performance laptop market.
--
Support Bacteria -- It's the Only Culture Some People Have


intok

join:2012-03-15
You mised my point, that Optimus is nvidia's only shot at staying somewhat relevant in the laptop market. This is the case since AMD and Intel blew up their chipset market.

Nvidia only has 2 remaining markets, high end GPUs for gaming or compute where their only competition is AMD and their ARM SOCs, where they have many very competent rivals to compete against.

With Nvidia possibly not having a cashcow in having any of the next gen consoles all it would take is for them to make a bum SOC or GPU and it's in deep trouble since AMD will be raking in the cash on on the game consoles that take a set of hardware that will not change and will be sold for up to 10 years with a very healthy profit margin.

Intel is the behemoth that just wont die and AMD has positioned themselves for a very nice comeback.


El Quintron
Resident Mouth Breather
Premium
join:2008-04-28
Etobicoke, ON
kudos:4
Reviews:
·TekSavvy Cable
·TekSavvy DSL
said by intok:

Intel is the behemoth that just wont die and AMD has positioned themselves for a very nice comeback.

I'm not sure I share your optimism for AMD, but it would certainly be good if they made a comeback, because as it stands both Intel and Nvidia are becoming a little too comfortable in their respective areas and it shows in the kind of product updates they're releasing.
--
Support Bacteria -- It's the Only Culture Some People Have


intok

join:2012-03-15
Well being the GPU and CPU supplier for both the next Playstation and Xbox will provide them with an excess of much needed cash. Being in both they pretty much assured to laugh all the way to the bank as both will sell millions of units worldwide for the better part of a decade.

On top of that it positions them very well with the game developers that are looking to port their games from the consoles to PCs, allowing them to lean on them to optimize their games for AMD desktop GPUs much like Nvidia's old "The Way It's Meant To Be Played". If you remember games that claim TWIMTBP tend to run much slower on equivalent non-Nvidia GPUs.

Basically they are assured to make quite allot of money in the years to come even if they don't hold the crown on the CPU.