metroX/redhat 3.0.3: s3/968, #9/771vram, DS64video/vram

metroX/redhat 3.0.3: s3/968, #9/771vram, DS64video/vram

Post by Don Dettk » Wed, 15 May 1996 04:00:00



    I have both of these cards: #9 771 4m vram and the very similar DS64 video 4m
    vram.

    I bought the official redhat 303 2-disk set, with metro-X.

    I'm getting really tired of the 'dashed line' bug in this series of video
    cards; I wanted to see if the MetroX has a better work-around than XFree86
    does.  Nope.

    In fact, I get almost NO success even getting the screen to 'turn on' with
    metro X.

    What's interesting, is that if I choose #9/771 (ie, I lie to the configX
    program, since I really have a DS64 at home) I get _some_ video.  With the
    real DS64 menu setting, I get NOTHING!  Why??  [metroX: do you have any
    updates for us REDHAT users?]

Could that be due to the "RAMDAC of the Month" game Diamond plays?
Or maybe configX decides that "DS64" means one of the several other
Stealth64 models, at least some of which don't even use an S3
chipset, let alone the 968.

    When I tried MetroX at work (with my #9 card), it works somewhat.  However,
    the * horizontal (vertical, depending on how you describe it) dashed line
    bug is still there.

    (FWIW, the latest demo of AccelX ALSO has this bug!!)

    Note: all the s3 968 cards I use have the IBM ramdac in them.  I took folks'
    advice and avoided the TI chip.  I tried one once, and it also had the bug, but
    also seemed a bit slower.  Maybe it was just how I felt that day - don't know
    ;-)

    Simple question:

    Why is this chipset so badly designed?  Or, why doesn't this company release
    info on how to work-around this bug effectively?  I really can't say I'm all
    that happy with s3, at this point.  Or #9 or Diamond ;-(

    (For those who don't know this bug, it appears when you enable the virtual
    root window and start moving windows, opaquely, left-to-right.  I used to get
    around it by setting my physical screen == virtual screen.  However, since I
    recently got a 1600x1280 screen, I want to ctrl-alt-<+> to move between 1024,
    1280 and 1600 (horiz).  I see no way to disable the dumb virtual screen when
    you need to run at 1600 _physical_).

    Its ok for a free X-server to have these bugs (IMHO), but for BOTH commercial
    servers to ALSO have it is intolerable.  Who would spend $100 or $50 for an
    X-server only to find that THEY didn't work-around the bug, either!!

If there is, in fact, such a bug, at least SOMEONE knows how to work
around it.  My STB Velocity 64, with the S3 968 and the IBM RGB524
RAMDAC has never produced such symptoms (nor any other undesirable
ones) in XFree86 3.1.2.  That's with 16bpp -- I almost never use any
other depth so I haven't tried them to see if there is a problem
there.  Sorry you had such crappy luck with the two brands you have.

--
Don Dettke,  Software Engineering Consultant
    Sorry, No E-Mail

 
 
 

metroX/redhat 3.0.3: s3/968, #9/771vram, DS64video/vram

Post by Bryan Lev » Wed, 15 May 1996 04:00:00



: If there is, in fact, such a bug, at least SOMEONE knows how to work
: around it.  My STB Velocity 64, with the S3 968 and the IBM RGB524
: RAMDAC has never produced such symptoms (nor any other undesirable
: ones) in XFree86 3.1.2.  That's with 16bpp -- I almost never use any
: other depth so I haven't tried them to see if there is a problem
: there.  Sorry you had such crappy luck with the two brands you have.

well, I have to run at 8bpp to get 1600 res ...

If you try yours at 8, I bet (if you try) you'll see the lines-bug ;-(

--
Bryan Levin

                LINUX: the choice of a GNU generation

 
 
 

metroX/redhat 3.0.3: s3/968, #9/771vram, DS64video/vram

Post by Panayiotis Samara » Wed, 22 May 1996 04:00:00


[snip of report of bugs with the MetroX/RedHat bundle]

Quote:

> Its ok for a free X-server to have these bugs (IMHO), but for BOTH commercial
> servers to ALSO have it is intolerable.  Who would spend $100 or $50 for an
> X-server only to find that THEY didn't work-around the bug, either!!

> sigh.

> --
> Bryan Levin

I've contacted the MetroX support people at RedHat about the problem with
the Diamond ( A Stealth 64 VRAM 2Mb - aka Video Vram - in my case). X won't
start at all, unless you configure it as an SVGA 640X480. I thought something
was wrong on the system, and tried a friend's MAtrox Millenium. It worked fine.

After reporting the problem to MetroX, they suggested I got the latest release of
the metroX RPM. I got all 3.2 Mbytes of it, only to realize the problem was still
there. Their latest message was that they will look into it and let me know when
the new release is ready for me to download. I guess I have to wait....

The main thing here is that IMHO MetroX should not claim their driver works
fine with "Brand X" graphics card, unless they are sure it does.
I noticed their drivers RPM is a beta release. It is their business if they charge  money for an
X driver, and the price is also for them to set based on the work they have  put on it, the
demand for the product etc.

I think however it is not correct for them to charge people for beta releases
of software. Anyone who has the time - and knowledge - to help them debug their
software should be given their betas for free. When they have a stable thing in their
hands, then they should go on and sell it. Even Microsoft had given people all over
the world beta releases of their W95 software, but they did not charge them for helping
them have a marketable product. Even if someone offers something as simple as a bug
report, he/she is helping them with their product and I don't think they should be
paying anything.

In my case, had I known their driver is not 100% ready, I would either go for a
Redhat 3.0.3. from Chepabytes or something and wait for the stable driver, or even
gotten the Accelerated X software. (NOTE:I don't know if their software is any better
either).

Anyway, at least I can say it felt good to receive a couple of  e-mails from the
people at MetroX, and they apologized for the inconvenience and all. At least they
didn't give me the "..it works on other machines, your PC is jinxed.." line :-)

I hope they will be contacting us when their driver will be ready and tested, because
I don't like the idea of being a Beta tester of such complicated sofwtare after
paying for it.

Later,
Panos
-----------------------------------------
Panayiotis Samaras      Athens  Greece

http://www.vacation.forthnet.gr