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Old 03-11-2005, 01:03 AM   #1
psyche101
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Distro to suit Trident Video Card


Hi All

I have sliced up my old Proview P2 233, and have Win 98, Debian Linux and BeOS runing from 2 x 20 GB HDD's.
Win 98 and Be look grerat, but Debian is really annoying, I do not seem to able to get my Trident 9750 for AGP card running. The Debian driver does not work, the VESA driver is gone from the latest X windows and the best screen I can get is 800 x 600 at 8 bit - which looks really shitty. I posted to Debian help, days later still no response to my post, and extensive Googling has only found one option - try another distro, maybe the next version of Debian will support it.
WTF. Hope thats not the average Linux type support.
My question is - can anybody recommend a Linux that will work with this video card straight up - no patches, searching or rewriting - I just want to fire up Linux and have a good look at it. I have seen KNoppix, and was very impressed, but the live eval of SUSE also struggled with the video driver. I have read of Knoppix being installed directly to the HDD - is this a good idea ?, I kinda took it that knoppix was meant for a CDROM, and I really want to learn some Linux - oh yeah, tried Slackware 9.1 as well, no luck there either - it falls apart even before I get to the installation. Surely there is a Linux I can use, if Windows and BeOS go on this hardware setup just fine.....then which Linux ?

TIA
 
Old 03-11-2005, 01:25 AM   #2
uberNUT69
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Hi,

I vaguely remember having problems with Trident (CyberBlade I think it might have been).

I seem to remember that the driver only works at certain (strange) combinations of resolutions and colour depths.

...


Nothing wrong with Knoppix install to HD afaik.
It's is, after all, a customised Debian .

I'd stick with Knoppix (or SOME form of Debian) and try and get that to work.

ps.
If your hardware combo doesn't work straight away, I'm not sure that you'll find many answers that don't involve fiddling or searching

Sorry I can't directly answer your question.
 
Old 03-11-2005, 05:25 AM   #3
syg00
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Re: Distro to suit Trident Video Card

Quote:
Originally posted by psyche101
WTF. Hope thats not the average Linux type support.
My question is - can anybody recommend a Linux that will work with this video card straight up - no patches, searching or rewriting - I just want to fire up Linux and have a good look at it.
Seems you want a lot for nothing. The folks providing that support are fighting vendors that refuse to release the internals of their products. Personally I think they do a sensational job.
Quote:
My question is - can anybody recommend a Linux that will work with this video card straight up - no patches, searching or rewriting - I just want to fire up Linux and have a good look at it. I have seen KNoppix, and was very impressed, but the live eval of SUSE also struggled with the video driver. I have read of Knoppix being installed directly to the HDD - is this a good idea ?
Knoppix has a good reputation - well deserved IMHO.
Other than that maybe you'll have to get off your arse and do something.
I had issues on my laptop with a Cyberblade - but that was early in it's life cycle. Ran o.k. in FB - minus acceleration of course.

Just had a look at the 2.6.10 kernel options - Trident is in there, as well as an (experimantal) accelaration option.
 
Old 03-13-2005, 05:05 AM   #4
dns21
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Just to keep the Debian support flowing, you could also try out Mepis. It seems to have very good support with a simple installation.

Last edited by dns21; 04-12-2005 at 03:37 PM.
 
Old 03-14-2005, 03:00 AM   #5
psyche101
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K - rant time surely syg00 was expecting this....

Quote:
Seems you want a lot for nothing. The folks providing that support are fighting vendors that refuse to release the internals of their products. Personally I think they do a sensational job.
Perhaps they do, and I am sure that they have far more important things to do than mess with my little X problems. I had been under the impression that forums were a community place where not only developers, but people with a little knowledge try to help each other out and offer sugestions. AFAIK advice is still free, and did not realise that asking for help could be construed as asking alot for nothing. Perhaps I have the wrong idea about Open Source ? Just seemed to be moving rather slowly after other forums I have seen. Just an IT WONT WORK post would have made me happy and saved me days of wasted time, not just being ignored. Lets face it, nobody likes to be ignored. I am sure these people are in fact doing a more than sensational job. Dammed if I can work half this crap out. Keep up support on these things though people, it is what makes these alternatives viable. Community spirit on the forums I am talking about. Leave the developers to develop. Help were we can.
Otherwise - tell me that the folks wont release internals, I work for a large company and will make sure that the secretive vendor sells no more products here. If we all did our bit, we might have a voice.

As for

Quote:
Other than that maybe you'll have to get off your arse and do something.
K here we go :- (surely you expected this from a comment like that)
Thought I would give Debian a go, heard it is pretty good, download distro (All 7 discs !!), download man pages, read, document existing PC, format.
Debian not working properly, K I blame X - it can be a toughie. Nope - pull side of the box, double check all hardware is documented correctly - yep, re-write XF86Config more times than I care to remember, Google till I can't type any more and ask questions in chat rooms. Read up on x - go as far as monitor theory and how displays are created using horizontal and vertical refresh rates, very interesting read too I found, learnt a lot. Even pulled an XF86Config of a BSD box I log into, as the specs are very similar, and hacked that to suit. 8 days later - I find the drivers are 'experimental' and don't really work. I agree wholly with the mental bit anyway and get on with it, Googling for patches, additional drivers, scripts, anything for a decent GUI. Did find a fix for my BeOS partition though.....that Gui is up and away.
NO LUCK, - K, I can live with that, try Slackware out, went out and bought 9.1. Wont even install, no discernable errors I can decipher. K, I can live with that, I saw a mag with a live eval of SUSE on it when I bought Slackware, back to the shop to buy that, maybe I will have a SUSE box, nope. Video driver once again. Will Linux go on this hardware - I am doubting it, but do I give up, a resounding NO.
2 and 1/2 days of downloading Knoppix. Right - this works with my hardware, boots nice, looks good. Yep this Linux looks OK. Nice from Cd - I think to myself, hrrm this would be nice, wonder if that is any good as a permanent OS, as I have really had enough over the last 7 weeks of trying to get a Linux distro to work with my hardware. And at this point really had enough configs and trial and error. Happy to pay Bill $300.00 just to see a gui screen again. CLI is nice, but I can do that on a 486. I paid money, I wanna see GUI. I wanna know why I am giving away a pretty, easy to use interface the kids can do homework on without getting me to do 100 conversions and repair pages of lost formating, and the wife can play solitaire on without typing in a string an armlength long for ordinary graphics or configuring emulators so that she can play the same game her friends play. Then I wanna plug my work crap in the same. No formatting, no conversions, Word, excel, Project, AutoCAD, just get it done. Lets face it, major institustions like schools, government and businesses rarely take non-Windows seriously for this very reason. Sure it is to their own detriment, but that's how it is. Like him or hate him, Bill is a clever man and is very rich because of it. the man can market. He did a good job on Australia that's for sure. Try and mention Linux to a small business (the guys that could REALLY use a free distro) here and you will be poo-poohed away as a nutter. PC's these days are an appliance, "I don't know how my microwave works, and could not repair it, but if I want a meal, I wanna use it without having to use the oven as well or read another manual on preparing burgers in a non-windows microwave. I don't care how it works ", I want results, and if I have to pay a little more for results, I will. Any sane person would.
That's when I came in here for advice, and was hoping to find someone who has used Linux and had success with this hardware. If I have ommitted any troubleshooting steps, please point them out so that next time I wont have to come into a forum and get told to get of my arse. Perhaps I am lazy, but after the above, I had seen enough scripts, patches and config files to drive me barmy. Any distro that takes that much messing around to get working has problems, and I thought people like me helped get these little bugs sorted to build the biggest and best product on the market for everyone, not just 'one that I like'.
Been a real PITA, hoping someone who has suffered similar could save me heaps of grief. That's why I asked for a distro that would just work. I believe I honestly had a fair go.
Thanks to all of you who offered advice, and I hope I can return the favour someday, I am currently downloading Mepis, as Knoppix works fine from cd, but knx-hdinstall fails on the first boot every time. CRC error (isn't that an industrial spray ?) I tried installing it 5 times with the instructions right in front of me. That card is causing problems there too. Why it works from CDROM but not a HD ?? I just can't be bothered finding out after all this. It's dead set too much trouble.
From what I read in these here forums whilst I sit on my arse, ubuntu looks very favourable, plenty of people supporting it, will try that out too, and one member has convinced me to give Gentoo a go as well. I will give anything a go, but if the product has problems. I will say so. That's what these forums are for isn't it ? If it's broke, one of us will be able to fix it ?
Forgot to mention - tried all of the above on a P3 I have as well, it has an Ali chipset with s SIS controller. Generates a malloc error with anything even *nix-ish. Only thing I belive that will run on that box is windows 98 and older BSD's it seems.
Tired but not beaten.
 
Old 03-14-2005, 04:36 AM   #6
uberNUT69
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Gday

I understand your frustration ... most of us have been there.
Keep trying and hopefully you will succeed!

I had similar problems when I first tried to use Redhat years ago ... took quite a while to learn all the different messages and their meaning ... but I got there eventually (many of my problems turned out to be things like faulty video memory, etc)

I have noticed the "What's Linux? / Who cares" mentality in Australia ... FYI I'm Tasmanian x
But there is hope .... eg. SA government showing preference for open-source, ISP's like Internode offering free(*) access to their mirrors for customers, etc
(it used to take months to download a single distro on a 33K modem @12hrs /day )

I know you don't want to fiddle (I interpret that as "get frustrated"), but instead of specifying "trident" in XF86Config-4 perhaps you could try "svga"?
also:
- One of the great tools in Debian for configuring X is called xdebconfigurator, which can make life very simple.
- If you know that Knoppix actually works (pretty graphics and all) perhaps you could find out which settings it uses and then copy them for use in another distro of choice (YAY DEBIAN!!!)

If you've gone to all the trouble of getting the Debian set, try installing that ... I'd suggest booting off cd 5 as it includes ext3 support.
When you're up and running (ok I skipped about an hour of description here), log in as root and install/run xdebconfigurator.

Getting stuck at that point, if you strike problems, will probably result in a lot more people trying to help you ... as it will appear is if you are trying to help yourself (I guess).

Anyway, enough babbling, good luck.

Keep it up bloke!! (and have a beer ... or a chill pill )
 
Old 03-14-2005, 04:44 AM   #7
syg00
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Quote:
Originally posted by psyche101
K - rant time surely syg00 was expecting this....
Yup - and if I may say, a good post.
I'll see if I can do it justice.
I have seen too many questions on "Linux- Newbie" where no effort had been made to fix (or investigate) prior to posting. Guess I reacted to your initial post as similar - "no patches, searching or rewriting - I just want to fire up Linux and have a good look at it".
Sounded like another - so for that I apologise.


Quote:
Just an IT WONT WORK post would have made me happy and saved me days of wasted time, not just being ignored. Lets face it, nobody likes to be ignored.
The other side of this is that there are a lot of threads, people only see what's current when they log in, and if you don't know, why post and potentially cause more angst by posting something wrong and sending the requester down the garden path.

As for the PC needing to be a "commodity item" to gain widespread acceptance, I have no arguement there. We're not talking family sedan car with Linux, we are talking "kit car". Pick a chassis, donk, gearbox ...
Run the wiring loom, stick some seat in ,... you get the idea.

This is *NOT* going to be done by the general car buying public.
Simple as that.

There are several good distros - you picked a few. I tried Ubuntu for "her ladyship" recently - finally put Mepis in.
Seems o.k. for a Win98 user - she's happy, and has never seen Linux before.

For Knoppix, I think the doco mentions you now need "sudo knoppix-install" for the hard-disk install.
"knx-hdinstall" has been superceded for some time.
 
Old 03-14-2005, 08:44 PM   #8
psyche101
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I see your point syg00, bad advice could be worse than none at all. Bet you have seen a few that wont have a go too, I must say I have met a few, and Windows certainly proliferates this mentality. I may have got a bit hot, all these failures and all. Sorry about that. FYI - I did try sudo-knx-hdinstall (read a post on that one), but got exactly the same result as knx-hdinstall, gets the system on the Hard drive, just does not work - very puzzled. Those CRC errors ?
uberNUT69 - lets keep plugging, SA has been in front of the rest of Oz with IT for ages, not sure why, but a lot of professional guys I know are heading that way, especially bsders. Sydney is starting to come on board too I believe.
Will keep chopping at it, I am sure I have just had a bad experience so far, just real unlucky so far.
Bet nobody in here could tell that I have very recently given up smoking.........
 
Old 03-14-2005, 10:24 PM   #9
syg00
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Quote:
Originally posted by psyche101
FYI - I did try sudo-knx-hdinstall (read a post on that one), but got exactly the same result as knx-hdinstall, gets the system on the Hard drive, just does not work - very puzzled. Those CRC errors ?
Nooo .... what I suggested was;
Code:
For Knoppix, I think the doco mentions you now need
"sudo knoppix-install" for the hard-disk install.
"knx-hdinstall" has been superceded for some time.
That's knoppix-install - completely different command.
 
Old 03-14-2005, 11:28 PM   #10
psyche101
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Ahh I see, my mistake, no, I didn't try that command, hadn't seen it. Will give that a shot tonight.
Seems strange that knx-hdinstall is still on the disc if it has been superseded, and does not work.
Wierd that it goes through the entire install process and then gives an error on first boot too I thought.
Tried the Gui tool as well, failed there too.
Sure is giving me a better overview of Linux in here, Mepis sounds like what I have been looking for, collegues just look very strangely at me if I mention Linux or BSD (one girl here still thinks that BSD stands for Big Sausage Dog....), or tell them that you don't have to pay for an OS, so I would like to recomend a trouble free distro that is simple to install. Just have to find it for myself first I have used FreeBSD 4x in the past and found it relativly easy to install by comparison, I was under the impression that Linux would be easier again, but I am probably having a real bad run of luck right now. I am sure that there will be a distro just right for me. Mepis is nearly here (downloaded), and I am keen to give that a go, really like the philosophy behind Ubuntu as well.

Thanks to all for your help, I am suprised at the great response from all to help a raving Linux newbie who just stopped smoking Will keep you posted on what turns out to be the most trouble free distro I find. I have another 3 different boxes coming in 3 weeks for 'test machines - just old P2ers' but what I find I will test on those hardware setups as well to see what turns out to be very universally trouble free for me.
 
Old 03-14-2005, 11:57 PM   #11
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One thing. The distro is completely irrelevant when it comes to hardware support. Hardware is supported by the kernel, not the distro.
 
Old 03-15-2005, 03:02 AM   #12
psyche101
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Quote:
One thing. The distro is completely irrelevant when it comes to hardware support. Hardware is supported by the kernel, not the distro.
That is right - the hardware is supported by the kernel, but the distro has to be able to work/support with the correct drivers to send appropriate messages to the kernel on how to react to the hardware doesn't it ?

I'm just an oldie that is learning new tricks, but I thought that's how it went ?
 
Old 03-15-2005, 06:29 AM   #13
syg00
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Quote:
Originally posted by chbin
One thing. The distro is completely irrelevant when it comes to hardware support. Hardware is supported by the kernel, not the distro.
Rubbish - if this were true there would be no need for module loading.
Knoppix is admired far and wide for its hardware detection.
Even for hardware the kernel *does* have options for, you still need to select that which is applicable.

Part of the reason for the plethora of distros available at any time.
 
Old 03-16-2005, 07:56 PM   #14
psyche101
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syg00

Guess your point has been made in this very thread


Quote:
why post and potentially cause more angst by posting something wrong and sending the requester down the garden path.
with

Quote:
Originally posted by chbin
One thing. The distro is completely irrelevant when it comes to hardware support. Hardware is supported by the kernel, not the distro.
Your point is well taken.
I 'roll my own' in FreeBSD. Still have some reading to do on how the Linux kernel interacts. Better make my way over to the how to pages.
As you build your own in BSD, the concept of the Linux kernel is quite different. Looking forward to working that one out.
 
Old 04-07-2005, 06:07 AM   #15
Marc A
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Hi,
A friend of mine also have a trident cyberblade it runs ok with Mandrake 9.1 (a french distro). This distro is easy for beginners but limited otherwise. I tried Knoppix on his box and xfree never made it. Does knoppix run ok on your box (wich version?). If knoppix runs ok, you can copy the xfree file (etc/X11/XF86Config-4) from the knoppix running on your instalation, on the installation installed on the harddisk (and not running X the right way).

For me as Knoppix don't run on my friends box, I'm gonna change the vidéo card and try a fresh debian install (testing).

Good luck, Marc A
 
  


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