My AGP graphics card

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daveyw
Posts: 237
Joined: Mon Sep 12, 2011 7:44 pm

My AGP graphics card

Post by daveyw »

Hi,

I was wondering if development is still continuing on AGP Radeon drivers or if the focus now is on PCI/e graphics cards (or is that an irrelevant question, and future developments will work regardless of the bus)?

The reason I ask is because of my own graphics card. In my A1-XEI have an AGP Radeon 9250 256MB/128-bit. It appears to be this card here: http://www.amazon.co.uk/ATI-Radeon-256M ... B002Z3J6RS . Here is my benchmark at Hans' site: http://hdrlab.org.nz/Benchmark/GfxBench2D/Result/1122 .

It seems to have a few quirks, although I don't know if this is because the OS4 driver isn't 100% compatible or perhaps there is a fault.

Firstly, for some reason, with the card in place and attached via DVI to my Dell monitor, it takes 45 seconds from power-on to uboot appears. I read somewhere that during boot up, the VRAM is mapped (or something), but recently when I was at a friend's place I connected my A1 via VGA to a different monitor, and uboot appeared instantly. Is there some sort of handshaking going on via DVI?

I initially tried the card under and older update og OS4.1.x, and only 128MB showed as useable. I therefore put the card aside and continued using my old 128 MB/64-bit Radeon 9250, but came back to it late last year and was surprised to find Workbench now reports the full 256 MB.

It seems all 256 MB is addressable, and I have got it quite low sometimes. :) However, if I have less than approx. 128 MB free and I open a new screen, that screen is usually garbage. If I pull down a working screen to reveal the new screen behind it, it comes up fine. In a few rare instances, opening a new screen with less than 128 MB free makes all open screens garbage.

Here's how Ranger reports the card:

Image

It would be nice to have all 256 MB accessible flawlessly, but as I said I don't know if that's down to the driver or some other factor. It would also be great to eliminate the wait on boot-up (it can be nail-biting when I've been doing some work under the hood, and waiting anxiously to see the machine boot :) ).
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LyleHaze
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Re: My AGP graphics card

Post by LyleHaze »

There is some automatic configuration between the graphics card and monitor, and it is optional.
Sys:prefs/screenmode, the second tab reads "Monitors", and if you un-select "detect settings automatically"
then it should help your boot times.
Of course you are then responsible for setting modes that your monitor can handle, but that seems only logical.

Have Fun!
LyleHaze
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daveyw
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Joined: Mon Sep 12, 2011 7:44 pm

Re: My AGP graphics card

Post by daveyw »

LyleHaze wrote:There is some automatic configuration between the graphics card and monitor, and it is optional.
Sys:prefs/screenmode, the second tab reads "Monitors", and if you un-select "detect settings automatically"
then it should help your boot times.
Of course you are then responsible for setting modes that your monitor can handle, but that seems only logical.

Have Fun!
LyleHaze
Thanks Lyle, tried that and it didn't affect the boot time. Perhaps this GFX card always interrogates the monitor regardless of this setting?

I also had it set on my old 128 MB/64-bit Radeon 9250 and it didn't take that long to boot.
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tonyw
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Re: My AGP graphics card

Post by tonyw »

Davey: Are you sure that the gfx initialisation is causing the delay?

It's also possible that you have non-existent IDE devices that U-Boot is waiting for (it has a 30-second timeout).

Another possible cause is a CD or DVD in a drive on boot, but I'm sure you would be aware of that.

Lastly, there are some modern high-order gfx cards that take forever to initialise. There are some brands of particular model cards that are worse than other brands, even though the card's chip set is the same. There are several threads here about long boot times, particularly for the X-1000 with advanced gfx cards.

As to the 256 MB thing, I thought all R1xx cards were deliberately limited to 128 MB to avoid the dual memory-space problem.
cheers
tony
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daveyw
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Joined: Mon Sep 12, 2011 7:44 pm

Re: My AGP graphics card

Post by daveyw »

I'm pretty sure it is the card that's causing the delay, I didn't get such a long wait with my other Radeon card. And if I plug VGA into this card, there's no wait.

Although, the HDD activity LED lights up during this phase, which is odd. I am also having a porblem with one of my HDs, but I didn't think the two are related. I have three IDE devices (1 = Master HDD, Slave HDD, 2 = Master DVD), and the four and final device is set to disabled in UBoot prefs.

Definitely not a CD/DVD in the drive. :)

I don't think it is an R1xx Radeon, pretty sure its an R2xx. That would be like a Radeon 7500?
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tonyw
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Re: My AGP graphics card

Post by tonyw »

You can also set the variable "sii0680ide_conf" (or "aiide_conf" if you are using the on-board IDE controller). Setting it to a value like 1120 (in your case) means that the first two devices are IDE drives, the third is an ATAPI drive and there is no fourth. That variable, although stored in the NVRAM that U-Boot can access, is only read by the disk driver, so it makes no difference to U-Boot. It only speeds up the OS4 boot to some extent, by skipping the drive identification phase.

All that is not going to get you anywhere, though, if you've already tested the machine with a different monitor and found it works immediately.
cheers
tony
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