ATI FAQ

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This FAQ should help users avoid some common installation and configuration issues related to DRI and X11 for AMD/ATI boards.

Hardware Support

Is my AMD/ATI board supported?

Many AMD/ATI boards (but not all) are supported by xorg-x11, at least for the 2D accelerated features. The 3D support is provided either by xorg-x11, or by AMD's closed source drivers. AMD's closed source driver only supports R600 and newer GPUs. Older GPUs will use the mature open source xorg-x11 driver.

GPU Common Name Support
Rage128 Rage128 xorg
R100 Radeon7xxx, Radeon64 xorg
R200, R250, R280 Radeon8500, Radeon9000, Radeon9200 xorg
R300, R400 Radeon 9500 - X850 xorg
R500 Radeon X1300 - X1950 xorg
R600 RadeonHD 2000 series xorg
RV670 RadeonHD 3000 series xorg
RV770 (R700) RadeonHD 4000 series xorg
Evergreen RadeonHD 5000 series AMD DRI, xorg
Northern Islands RadeonHD 6000 series AMD DRI, xorg
Southern Islands RadeonHD 7000 series AMD DRI, xorg
Note
The Radeon Feature Matrix at x.org lists the open source driver support level for each part of the graphics card hardware.

I have an All-In-Wonder/Vivo board. Are the multimedia features supported?

You don't need to use anything special for the board's multimedia features; x11-drivers/xf86-video-ati will work just fine.

I'm not using an x86-based architecture. What are my options?

X11 support on the PPC or Alpha platforms is quite similar to x86 X11 support. However, AMD/ATI's closed source Catalyst drivers are not supported on the PPC or Alpha, so you will have to use the open source drivers. The Catalyst drivers are only available for x86 and AMD64. The open source xorg-x11 drivers should work well on all architectures.

Important
To enable agpgart support for certain old AMD64 chipsets, you have to disable support for the K8 IOMMU.

I have a laptop. Is my ATI Mobility model supported?

It should be, but you may have a configuration issue due to the OEM PCI id that such chips may have. In such cases, you may have to write the configuration file yourself.

Installation

Packages

There are two ways of getting drivers for your AMD/ATI card:

  • The xorg-x11 ebuild provides the X11 implementation
  • The ati-drivers ebuild provides the AMD closed source X drivers and kernel modules

If you want to use AMD/ATI's internal agpgart support instead of the Linux kernel one, the agpgart driver and the chip set specific driver (in your kernel configuration) must be built as modules or not at all.

Note
Please read the Hardware 3D acceleration guide for more information on installing drivers for your AMD/ATI graphics card.

Configuration

You may not need to manually create xorg.conf or modify it if you are using the open-source radeon driver. Try running without it first. If this fails, you can use the auto-configuration option of X:

root # X -configure

If you use the proprietary ATI drivers, you can get assistance for configuring X through the aticonfig application (which is part of the x11-drivers/ati-drivers package). See fglrx for more information.

For more information on how to get a basic xorg.conf configuration file, please refer to the Gentoo X Server HowTo.

Note
PPC, AMD64, and x86 users can use the xac stand-alone X configuration tool by emerging x11-misc/xac, but isn't required.
Important
If you're using ati-drivers , then you'll need to disable radeonfb (and probably any other framebuffer drivers) in your kernel config, as it conflicts with the built-in framebuffer in ati-drivers.

Switching to OpenGL

Once X is installed, configured, and running, it can use the AMD/ATI OpenGL libraries:

root # eselect opengl set ati

More Resources

Please read the Hardware Acceleration Guide for more information on configuring your AMD/ATI graphics card.

More information on Gentoo Linux and the AMD/ATI Radeon binary drivers can be found on the Wedge Unofficial Gentoo ATI Radeon FAQ, and on the Unofficial AMD Linux Driver Wiki .

Acknowledgements

We would like to thank the following authors and editors for their contributions to this guide:


  • Luca Barbato
  • Jorge Paulo
  • Tiemo Kieft
  • Joshua Saddler