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#1 2012-10-13 23:47:19

root
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From: 127.0.0.1
Registered: 2012-04-13
Posts: 297

Broken video after graphic packages update (savage + xorg files)

I have upgraded today and after rebooting right starting with slim the screen is unviewable so to speak, full of artifacts.

I have managed to take a screenshot though, to my surprise, the desktop featured looks much cleaner. See,

http://i48.tinypic.com/2uiet4y.jpg

There is 'merely' a stripe in the lower screen part whereas "live" the whole screen is covered with colums of artifacts that make it impossible to see what the active window is actually about. Maybe at first you are able to see a bit of it, especially in the upper part of the screen (the screen appears split horizontally with the lower screen unviewable) but the more you interact with that window the more it is affected by the artifacts. The latter seem to refresh themselves too.

The rest of the system appears to work as usual and there are no error messages anywhere in the logs. Searches so far regarding this issue have been fruitless and right now the only way to get a 'visible' system is to downgrade the savage, xorg-server, xorg-server-common and xf86-input-evdev files.

Anyone has had this kind of problems? I have seen some threads concerning problems with the latest xorg update but I am not sure if they may be related to this.

Honestly speaking, each time I see a savage driver update shiver runs down my spine lol


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                        'Cause I wanna be an Archy - An Archy in the UK // Sex Pistols

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#2 2012-10-14 10:13:49

zorro
Member
Registered: 2011-11-18
Posts: 47

Re: Broken video after graphic packages update (savage + xorg files)

I am experiencing the same artifacts after the upgrade. I have restored a backup and only upgraded packages that are unlikely to be causing this effect. Here's a list of packages I omitted and everything is now operating correctly.

# pacman -Syu
resolving dependencies...
looking for inter-conflicts...

Targets (14): freeglut-2.8.0-2  glu-9.0.0-1  jasper-1.900.1-8  libegl-9.0-1  libgbm-9.0-1  libgl-9.0-1
              libglapi-9.0-1  libldap-2.4.33-1  mesa-9.0-1  xf86-input-evdev-2.7.3-2  xf86-video-savage-2.3.6-2
              xf86-video-vesa-2.3.2-2  xorg-server-1.13.0-2  xorg-server-common-1.13.0-2

Total Installed Size:   60.05 MiB
Net Upgrade Size:       5.69 MiB

This is a short term solution but may help track down the problem. Some/most of these packages may be fine - I have not tried and tested them all.

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#3 2012-10-14 17:19:59

zorro
Member
Registered: 2011-11-18
Posts: 47

Re: Broken video after graphic packages update (savage + xorg files)

Here is a reduced list of packages not installed, system still operating correctly.

# pacman -Syu
resolving dependencies...
looking for inter-conflicts...

Targets (5): xf86-input-evdev-2.7.3-2  xf86-video-savage-2.3.6-2  xf86-video-vesa-2.3.2-2
             xorg-server-1.13.0-2  xorg-server-common-1.13.0-2

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#4 2012-10-15 15:50:16

Maki
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From: Skopje, Macedonia
Registered: 2007-10-16
Posts: 345
Website

Re: Broken video after graphic packages update (savage + xorg files)

I have a similar issue on a thinkpad t23, since the newest xorg upgrades i get this error http://ompldr.org/vZnc1cg/lol.


If it ain't broke, broke it then fix it.

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#5 2012-10-15 22:12:48

root
Member
From: 127.0.0.1
Registered: 2012-04-13
Posts: 297

Re: Broken video after graphic packages update (savage + xorg files)

@zorro

Your files match those I had to downgrade myself (and quite some other users taking into account the xorg threads around). Though in your case I do not know why you have both the savage and the vesa video drivers installed. Which one are you actually using?

@Maki

I get the xaa module error too though, fortunately, no seg faults.


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#6 2012-10-17 20:24:18

Maki
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From: Skopje, Macedonia
Registered: 2007-10-16
Posts: 345
Website

Re: Broken video after graphic packages update (savage + xorg files)

Seems like the issue was that XAA was abandoned from xorg, a cool guy on irc pointed me to a gentoo forum topic http://forums.gentoo.org/viewtopic-t-93 … 8d9d6e3869.

seems like the solution is to explicitly enable EXA accel with

Option    "AccelMethod"   "EXA"

. the driver works now, i have video but its kinda slow for firefox rendering.


If it ain't broke, broke it then fix it.

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#7 2012-10-17 20:37:38

Gusar
Member
Registered: 2009-08-25
Posts: 3,452

Re: Broken video after graphic packages update (savage + xorg files)

Does the driver have a "shadowfb" or a "noaccel" option? That might work better than EXA, at the expense of more CPU usage.

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#8 2012-10-18 06:11:54

Maki
Member
From: Skopje, Macedonia
Registered: 2007-10-16
Posts: 345
Website

Re: Broken video after graphic packages update (savage + xorg files)

Yeah, i tried both, noaccel mode works fine, but i have no video (same as the vesa driver), when i enable shadowfb i get the same backtrace that i get when i'm not using a xorg.conf, so i guess shadowfb is preffered but quite buggy.


If it ain't broke, broke it then fix it.

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#9 2012-10-18 20:25:04

zorro
Member
Registered: 2011-11-18
Posts: 47

Re: Broken video after graphic packages update (savage + xorg files)

Hi Root,

Sorry for the delay - I missed your update. (2012-10-15 22:12:48)

I am using the Savage driver, as it performs better than Vesa.

I could remove Vesa but it may provide a fall-back - I haven't tried this yet.

Thanks

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#10 2012-10-18 21:18:26

root
Member
From: 127.0.0.1
Registered: 2012-04-13
Posts: 297

Re: Broken video after graphic packages update (savage + xorg files)

@Maki

Thanks for that link. I have too tried to set the AccelMethod to EXA though the results aren't quite pleasing.
As I am using 16 to squeeze some 'extra' performance off my oldy T23 some artifacts appear occasionally here and there. Switching to 24 'fixes' them to some extent though at some noticeable performance loss especially related with media (video) reproduction being less fluent.
In either case the screen refreshes sloppily and while simply moving a window X easily tops the CPU use.

Just like in Maki's case rendering in Firefox (even though I even notice it on the lighter jumanji) is pretty slow with some menu corruption/artifacts, mainly using 16 bits.

IMHO this XAA dropping wasn't a good idea. And seeing the performance I think that for now I will keep downgrading those packages waiting for a better 'fix' by the part of X guys.

@zorro

No worries.
Maybe I was misguided as I use a xorg.conf file and for me there is really no need for an 'additional' driver. Do you use a xorg.conf? If not, as said, I would understand why you have the vesa drivers installed.
In my case, as far as I know, to achieve something similar to the vesa driver but still using the savage one (and thus something similar the fallback you mention) I just have to set the NoAccel option to "True".


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                        'Cause I wanna be an Archy - An Archy in the UK // Sex Pistols

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#11 2012-10-19 22:24:56

root
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From: 127.0.0.1
Registered: 2012-04-13
Posts: 297

Re: Broken video after graphic packages update (savage + xorg files)

Just realized that the new Xorg package fixes, apparently by default taking into account my tests, some of the issues I had some time back (resume locks), even 'giving back' the 20 Mb of RAM I 'lost' in one of the X updates.
A pity I can't take advantage of them due to the horrible performance :'(


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#12 2012-10-20 17:18:22

zorro
Member
Registered: 2011-11-18
Posts: 47

Re: Broken video after graphic packages update (savage + xorg files)

Hi Root,

I am using xorg.conf. Initially Vesa was installed, then I installed Savage and video playback improved. I have never removed Vesa. Savage without acceleration is incredibly slow, EXA is slow and XAA is broken. I have settled on Vesa for now. Video playback has always been poor on this old laptop - downgrading to Vesa is going in the wrong direction!

Thanks

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#13 2012-10-20 17:35:25

AndyRTR
Developer
From: Magdeburg/Germany
Registered: 2005-10-07
Posts: 1,638

Re: Broken video after graphic packages update (savage + xorg files)

XAA acceleration has been removed from Xorg-server.

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#14 2012-10-20 18:00:18

Gusar
Member
Registered: 2009-08-25
Posts: 3,452

Re: Broken video after graphic packages update (savage + xorg files)

zorro wrote:

I am using the Savage driver, as it performs better than Vesa

zorro wrote:

Savage without acceleration is incredibly slow, EXA is slow and XAA is broken. I have settled on Vesa for now

^^ Err, that's a contradiction.

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#15 2012-10-20 19:54:38

root
Member
From: 127.0.0.1
Registered: 2012-04-13
Posts: 297

Re: Broken video after graphic packages update (savage + xorg files)

@zorro

Just as Maki's link in #6 told me, and AndyRTR repeated in #13, XAA support is gone and that is, as far as I know, the source of this problem.

I do not know how you detected the video improvement as at the same time only one driver is used, in this case either savage or vesa. I don't know either at what point you created the xorg.conf file (after having installed the savage only or after installing both drivers, that is vesa too). Even if both appear in the file they are 'distributed' to different screens.

For me it is

With vesa - being able to work 'flawlessly' but not being able to watch local (on hdd) movies

or

With savage (EXA) -being unable to work 'flawlessly', including no fluent streams due to EXA sloppiness, but being able to watch local (on hdd) movies.

For now I have created two xorg.conf files to use depending on the situation (movies yes or no) and see if there is some improvement in performance in future savage drivers.

@Gusar

If I have been tweaking around with my drivers in the last 2 hours and am now using vesa (my noaccel xorg.conf) imagine what may have happened during the nearly 24 hours of difference between the messages by zorro you quote lol ;P

Last edited by root (2012-10-20 19:55:05)


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#16 2012-10-20 22:52:00

zorro
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Registered: 2011-11-18
Posts: 47

Re: Broken video after graphic packages update (savage + xorg files)

AndyRTR - Thanks for confirming that XAA acceleration has been removed from Xorg-server. I presume this just effects older hardware. One of the strengths of Linux is the support of such hardware.

Gusar - Prior to the recent upgrade Savage had better performance. I had restored a backup for a short while, until I concluded that keeping current was necessary.

Root - I edit xorg.conf to switch between the different drivers. I may have to download all content (eg youtube) and watch them at runlevel 3 with mplayer (ie without X running). Thanks.

Last edited by zorro (2012-10-20 22:53:05)

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#17 2012-10-22 20:57:02

root
Member
From: 127.0.0.1
Registered: 2012-04-13
Posts: 297

Re: Broken video after graphic packages update (savage + xorg files)

@zorro

Some weird procedure to watch multimedia content you got there yikes

I am myself still struggling to have a near to decent performance. Due to the sluggish EXA acceleration my first option has been to play the vesa card. But since a couple of days it has started to freeze my browser(s), I mainly tried the webkit ones, whenever I am watching streamed tv at the same time while browsing and doing my stuff. Not live streamed content
I have tested both with a hybrid xorg.conf (it including both savage and vesa adjustments) and now pure vesa/savage ones.

As the vesa alternative keeps failing (it is the only apparent thing that besides watching local movies does not work and as far as I have checked the vesa package info there shouldn't be any problem or incompatibility) I have switched to the savage one but disabling the accel.

What are the chances of reporting the poor "new" EXA behaviour as a regression bug to Xorg and see if they are able to improve it? Anyone knows?


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#18 2012-10-23 08:54:16

shetland_breeder
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From: England
Registered: 2010-05-17
Posts: 57
Website

Re: Broken video after graphic packages update (savage + xorg files)

root wrote:

What are the chances of reporting the poor "new" EXA behaviour as a regression bug to Xorg and see if they are able to improve it? Anyone knows?

Nil I suspect. In fact it looks as though Xorg is going to drop all the drivers for 'old' hardware.

The answer seems to be the 'Windows' way - get a set of mostly working software and do 'pacman -Rns pacman' so you're never tempted to update it to a broken set.

Or switch to Debian - comes to the same thing I suppose ;-)

Pete

Last edited by shetland_breeder (2012-10-23 08:54:37)

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#19 2012-10-23 17:48:13

zorro
Member
Registered: 2011-11-18
Posts: 47

Re: Broken video after graphic packages update (savage + xorg files)

Ideally, Xorg would have optional dependencies to support older drivers.

Another alternative is to rebuild the latest release from source but include XAA from the previous release. Hmm.

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#20 2012-10-24 17:15:25

root
Member
From: 127.0.0.1
Registered: 2012-04-13
Posts: 297

Re: Broken video after graphic packages update (savage + xorg files)

shetland_breeder wrote:

In fact it looks as though Xorg is going to drop all the drivers for 'old' hardware.

As I have mentioned regarding the dropping of xaa IMHO it is quite a bad idea/big mistake taking into account how central or 'core' the X package is in order to use an 'old' computer as more than just as a server without the need of a graphical interface.
Of course there may be a (good) reason for this but taking into account the effects the dropping comes with without further alternatives just does not seem that 'right'.

shetland_breeder wrote:

The answer seems to be the 'Windows' way - get a set of mostly working software and do 'pacman -Rns pacman' so you're never tempted to update it to a broken set.

I don't think it has to come to such a extreme 'deep freeze' extreme (yet?). Especially taking into account that there are more packages pacman deals with than the ones we are discussing here. And those are working fine.
Unfortunately, as I have just stated above, the ones discussed are 'core' ones in order to handle a smooth basic Linux desktop installation.

shetland_breeder wrote:

Or switch to Debian - comes to the same thing I suppose ;-)

Sure, changing to a more conservative distribution is an alternative I have considered. And as long as it would be a rolling release it would be fine to me. But only for the time that distro and any other would reach the point we are at now.
Even though using a bleeding edge distribution like Arch can sometimes be a bumpy ride I think it also offers the chance of discussing things any other distribution will benefit from on the long run. In this case installations on 'legacy' hardware.


zorro wrote:

Ideally, Xorg would have optional dependencies to support older drivers.

A good idea indeed though not sure if it is actually possible to keep 'catching up' with older hardware.

zorro wrote:

Another alternative is to rebuild the latest release from source but include XAA from the previous release. Hmm.

Or a kind soul willing to create a xorg-server-legacy package (in AUR?)...


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#21 2012-10-24 18:37:22

Gusar
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Registered: 2009-08-25
Posts: 3,452

Re: Broken video after graphic packages update (savage + xorg files)

XAA wasn't accelerating anything for years now (since offscreen pixmaps were turned off, because they were buggy as hell and no one ever bothered to fix them), so nothing is lost by removing it. There is only something to gain, namely less complexity in X.

If the alternatives (shadowfb, noaccel) don't work, file bugs upstream about it. For my SiS graphics, shadowfb works great.

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#22 2012-10-24 19:40:13

zorro
Member
Registered: 2011-11-18
Posts: 47

Re: Broken video after graphic packages update (savage + xorg files)

I only use this laptop for browsing the web and watching flash (youtube etc). XAA seems to provided some form of 2D acceleration, without it scrolling and flash are poor. I guess the alternatives are working fine, so either my CPU or GPU isn't capable of meeting the additional real-time demands.

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#23 2012-10-24 20:14:48

Gusar
Member
Registered: 2009-08-25
Posts: 3,452

Re: Broken video after graphic packages update (savage + xorg files)

zorro wrote:

XAA seems to provided some form of 2D acceleration

It didn't. Since this commit: http://cgit.freedesktop.org/xorg/xserve … 326449835e <- committed at the beginning of 2009, XAA hasn't accelerated anything anymore.

Did you try the shadowfb and noaccel options (making sure by checking the logs that they got applied)? If yes, like I said, file bugs. With shadowfb things should work exactly as they used to with XAA. They do on my SiS laptop.

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#24 2012-10-24 21:40:40

zorro
Member
Registered: 2011-11-18
Posts: 47

Re: Broken video after graphic packages update (savage + xorg files)

I tried these settings again to document the issues seen.

shadowfb option results in artifacts - see #1.

[  1794.889] (WW) The directory "/usr/share/fonts/OTF/" does not exist.
[  1794.894] (WW) Open ACPI failed (/var/run/acpid.socket) (No such file or directory)
[  1795.326] (WW) SAVAGE(0): HW acceleration not supported with "shadowFB".
[  1796.797] (WW) SAVAGE(0): Direct Rendering requires the COB -- Set Option "DisableCOB" "false"
[  1796.797] (EE) SAVAGE(0): DRI isn't enabled
[  1797.774] (WW) SAVAGE(0): Direct rendering disabled

noaccel option works but moving/scrolling windows is really slow - confirmed option in log but not captured here

[  2009.704] (WW) The directory "/usr/share/fonts/OTF/" does not exist.
[  2009.710] (WW) Open ACPI failed (/var/run/acpid.socket) (No such file or directory)
[  2011.192] (WW) SAVAGE(0): Direct Rendering requires the COB -- Set Option "DisableCOB" "false"
[  2011.192] (EE) SAVAGE(0): DRI isn't enabled
[  2012.157] (WW) SAVAGE(0): Direct rendering disabled

vesa

[  2121.978] (WW) The directory "/usr/share/fonts/OTF/" does not exist.
[  2121.984] (WW) Open ACPI failed (/var/run/acpid.socket) (No such file or directory)
[  2122.622] (WW) VESA(0): No valid modes left. Trying less strict filter...

Last edited by zorro (2012-10-24 21:41:01)

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#25 2012-10-27 22:29:46

root
Member
From: 127.0.0.1
Registered: 2012-04-13
Posts: 297

Re: Broken video after graphic packages update (savage + xorg files)

Gusar wrote:

If the alternatives (shadowfb, noaccel) don't work, file bugs upstream about it. For my SiS graphics, shadowfb works great.

The thing is, for what it does not work great? Mind telling me if you at any point have used acceleration with your SiS graphic card, f.e. as in my case for watching local (on hdd) movies? Are you able to do such thing with your alternatives right now?
As far as I know, you should not.

You are right, and I am trying to free up some time to report a bug report upstream though meanwhile I am still open to discuss if there is or someone has found a temporary fix to this situation getting as close to normal situation as possible.

@zorro

I can't help you with regard to the slowness when scrolling/moving windows as I am myself in your same situation (you don't notice it too much if using spacebar to scroll (shift+spacebar to go up) and you usually work in maximized windows). But for the youtube videos poorness I would recommend you to set your default color depth to 16 (and obviously use a low quality, f.e. max 360/480).
If you just use your T23 just for web browsing and watching youtube videos you can even consider getting rid of the savage driver and switch to the vesa one. Remember to do so in runlevel 3 and create a new xorg.conf file for the vesa driver. That way you will get rid of the slowness in scrolling and windows movement without artifacts.

Last edited by root (2012-10-27 22:32:10)


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