[GLLUG] dual video with radeon 7000

Marr marr@shianet.org
Mon, 6 May 2002 16:45:23 -0400

On Monday 06 May 2002 03:27pm, Mike Rambo wrote:
> I have an IBM box (a 300PL I think) that my son wanted
> better video in. It comes with integrated S3 Trio and an AGP
> slot. I found (the hard way) that the stupid proprietary
> case design will not accomodate very many cards in the AGP
> slot - and none that I could find with performance much
> better than the integrated video. As such, I ended up
> putting a 64MB Radeon 7000 PCI card in one of the slots.
> Now, when I try to run the X configuration tool (XFdrake on
> Mandrake 8.2) it finds two video cards but cannot configure
> either one of them to work. I'm mainly interested in the
> Radeon card - I'd be perfectly happy to totally disable the
> integrated video but that isn't an option in CMOS setup on
> this machine. When I try to configure the Radeon card I end
> up with trashed video and a frozen box. I think Mandrake
> uses a framebuffer setup by default but I've also used the
> nonfb boot option with no change in results. I think I'm
> dealing with what X thinks is a dual video setup but I don't
> know how to get it to work. Any of you dual video guys want
> to take a shot at this?

Hi Mike,

Funny you mention this. Just this weekend I was running (Slackware 8.0) Linux 
in a 3-monitor / 1-PC configuration. (With Xinerama enabled, in side-by-side 
monitor configuration, Emacs runs full-screen at over 504 columns wide -- 
tres cool, in a geeky sorta way :^O). For those that may not know, Xinerama 
is the XFree86 extension ('startx -- +xinerama') that treats multiple 
monitors on the same host as one big desktop -- a very neat capability!

My case involved built-in i810 (Intel chipset) video and 2 PCI cards. 
Fortunately, I am able to disable the i810 video in the BIOS and debugged 
each card's XFree86 configuration separately, which made it much easier, 
especially since I had an old Hercules PCI card that insisted on running with 
the 'NoAccel' (or whatever it was called) flag enabled in the 'XF86Config' 
file. Before I debugged that (by trial-and-error), it would lock the box 
*COLD* (no remote telnet, no remote ping, no Ctl-Alt-Backspace to kill the X 
server, *nothing*!) whenever I mouse clicked on the screen it was serving.

I don't know what Mandrake might be doing, but can you post or email me your 
'XF86Config' file? I might be able to make an educated guess....

Does the box crash even when configured to boot to console mode or just when 
XFree86 runs?

Can you run the 'xf86config' utility (after backing up your original 
'(/etc/X11/)XF86Config' file, of course) and compare what it generates with 
the Mandrake version?

I hope I'm not too far off base here. I don't use Mandrake, but my bro-in-law 
does and at times, I've seen some big differences between it and Slackware 
when I try to work on his box.

P.S. There is a "Xinerama HOWTO" ('/usr/doc/Linux-HOWTOs/Xinerama-HOWTO' on 
Slackware) that might shed some small amount of light on this.


Bill Marr