[ltp] re: T60p, free driver?

Phil linux-thinkpad@linux-thinkpad.org
Wed, 16 May 2007 22:53:35 +0100

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I'm running Ubuntu 7.04 on a T60 with ATI X1400. I started off with the
vesa driver and it was fine but I needed twin-head capability. I'm now
running the fglrx driver (version 7.1.0-8.34.8+ which is
working fine. I get 1400x1050 crisp and clear on the laptop, and I can
run 2800x1050 across laptop monitor and external LCD - and can switch
between the modes without restarting X. Exactly what I want. I haven't
been able to get different resolutions on each screen but I've not
tried too hard, after several months of hell trying to get it to work
on earlier Redhat version I'm just happy to have it the way it is.<br>
I've not had any lockups - been running over 1 month. I suspend to ram
on a regular basis (2-3 times/day) - there was a single config change
to get this to work but I'm damned if I can remember what it was. I can
dig around. Happy to send my xorg.conf as well.<br>
I have to say I'm very impressed with Ubuntu 7.04 - a big improvement
over the previous and I now have a very solid, reliable and fast laptop.<br>
Steve Newcomb wrote:
<blockquote cite="mid:877ir8ppz4.fsf@zorba.coolheads.com" type="cite">
  <pre wrap="">Richard Neill <a class="moz-txt-link-rfc2396E" href="mailto:rn214@hermes.cam.ac.uk">&lt;rn214@hermes.cam.ac.uk&gt;</a> wrote:

  <blockquote type="cite">
    <pre wrap="">Am I correct in assuming that the T60p driver has only two choices: 
vesa, or fglrx?

I find that the fglrx driver is too unstable (crashes about once a 
month, locking the system solid) - eg by doing repeated dragging within 

On the other hand, the vesa driver is unusable, since for vertical 
scrolling within (eg firefox), the screen re-paints very slowly.

Is there any open driver which has better performance than the vesa one?
[I don't really care if I have to forego 3d screensavers]

Thanks very much,
  <pre wrap=""><!---->
I could not get the fglrx driver to work at all.  I'm using a a Debian
Etch that I compile myself.  I don't know why it doesn't
work.  It just doesn't.

The VESA driver is working fine for me, EXCEPT:

I haven't found a way to switch between the screen and an external
monitor, such as a projector.  I have to deadstart the machine either
with the projector attached (in which case the internal screen doesn't
work), or with the projector not attached (in which case the projector
does not work).  It's therefore impossible to set up a presentation on
screen before speaking, and then to go to the lectern, plug into the
projector, and start speaking.  "Inconvenient" is the mildest way of
describing the situation.

All ideas welcome.  I'm quite disappointed with the ATI graphics
(Radeon Mobility X1400) hardware that I paid extra for.  Knowing that
its fglrx driver is unstable (but thanks for this information,
Richard!), as well as being closed and proprietary, doesn't help my
attitude very much, either.  I've been thinking that I'll have to do
my public presentations under Windows, which really sucks, for both
technical and emotional reasons.

So, I have no solutions to offer, but, like Richard, I wish to
register my desire for a solution!

  Note: I finally gave up on the internal modem on my T60.  I could
        not make it work, nor could I make my PCMCIA modem card work.
        I bought a Best Data external USB modem with internal
        controller for $50.  It's large and clunky-looking, but it's
        lightweight and it works quite well with no tweaking of
        anything.  Ain't USB great?

-- Steve

Steven R. Newcomb, Consultant
Coolheads Consulting

Co-editor, Topic Maps International Standard (ISO/IEC 13250)
Co-editor, draft Topic Maps -- Reference Model (ISO/IEC 13250-5)

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