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Old 12-17-2013, 01:59 PM   #1
Rod3775
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video refresh fails on slackware-14.1 with legacy GeForce4 video card


My NVidia GeForce4 MX4000 card has worked fine with all slackware versions up to and including 14.0. On 14.1, various pieces of text or icons are omitted on screen refresh using the default nouveau driver. Usually (but not always) they reappear on the next refresh of that screen segment. I tried turning off 2D acceleration with "option nouveau noaccel=1" in /etc/modprobe.d/nouveau.conf , but this resulted in the login screen having garbled text. The NVidia driver for this card(96.43.23) has not been updated for 14.1, so it won't build. Other than reverting to 14.0 and never updating slackware again, are there any other solutions?
 
Old 12-17-2013, 02:32 PM   #2
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Report that bug, so that the developers can fix it. They usually don't have such old hardware to test the drivers with.
Also, you could try a newer kernel, maybe that issue is already fixed in a newer version.
 
Old 12-17-2013, 10:04 PM   #3
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Geforce 2/4 MX is more than ten years old, driver bit rot is kicking in. Staying with Slackware 14.0 on such old hardware is your best bet.

Reporting the bug to nouveau is a good recommendation. If they are sensible, they will remove the dysfunctional code and de-support such ancient stuff, so it can fall back to vesa and at least work again.
 
Old 12-19-2013, 04:21 PM   #4
metaschima
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You can either try the latest nouveau driver or report the issue to nouveau.

The 'nomodeset' option may help.
 
Old 12-22-2013, 05:11 PM   #5
Rod3775
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xorg-server possibly losing requests during high cpu load

As suggested, I upgraded to xorg-server-1.14.5 and xf86-video-nouveau-1.0.10. I copied the x11 source subdirectory from a mirror and used Patrick's excellent modular SlackBuild to just rebuild theose two packages. xorg-server was easy. The Nouveau package (from nouveau.freedesktop.org) was more problematic. The source tarball was built with an incorrect top level directory, so I unpacked it, renamed the directory and repacked it so the SlackBuild could deal with it. But then, I discovered that none of the GNU automake tools had been run on it, so there was no 'configure' script. So I ran all that stuff on the unpacked source and repackaged it for the SlackBuild. Both packages now install and run, but DO NOT change the problem. Because of the nature of the refresh failures, which occur during moments of high CPU load,and involve whole icons/lines of text and because of a note in the ChangeLog from server-1.14.3 to 1.14.5 about xserver losing events (which I also experienced, but is fixed with the upgrade), I suspect that xorg-server is also losing requests on the Unix socket connecting it to clients. My next trick will be to look at the actual code change dealing with events, and see if the change can also be applied to requests. Won't have time for a while.

BTW, the snarky comments about old hardware were unhelpful and unneeded. The hardware works fine and so does the Intel P4 motherboard it is installed on. Please consider trolling on CNN in lieu of LinuxQuestions.

Last edited by Rod3775; 12-22-2013 at 05:12 PM. Reason: typo
 
Old 12-22-2013, 05:38 PM   #6
ReaperX7
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The card is quite dated regardless if it works or not. Driver support for certain older Nvidia cards through Nouveau-x11 is rather limited as most don't have the necessary pixel shader units to allow the LLVM-Clang's enabled Gallium3D API to accelerate and have proper hardware resource access.
 
Old 12-22-2013, 06:08 PM   #7
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I have a really old P3 with a GeForce card in it. It still works even on Slackware 14.1, but isn't good for much. It should be possible to fix, if it really is a software issue.
 
Old 12-22-2013, 08:54 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rod3775 View Post
BTW, the snarky comments about old hardware were unhelpful and unneeded. The hardware works fine and so does the Intel P4 motherboard it is installed on. Please consider trolling on CNN in lieu of LinuxQuestions.
Every hardware component has its driver support lifecycle and the Geforce4 MX is way beyond that.

nouveau(4) was actually meant as a replacement for the nv(4) driver, which doesn't work on modern (post 2008) nVidia GPUs. nv(4) is still part of Slackware 14.1 and should support Geforce4 MX just fine. Just uninstall and blacklist nouveau.
 
Old 12-22-2013, 09:04 PM   #9
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In the /extras directory of the install media is the Nouveau-Blacklist package. I would recommend installing it then switching to the Nv-x11 driver.

The other option would be to use the xorg-vesa driver which has support in Mesa3D for the Gallium3D llvmpipe driver.

As video hardware gets more and more dated it often will have driver issues. Often you will find some hardware only supported anymore through vesa and llvmpipe.

Last edited by ReaperX7; 12-22-2013 at 09:06 PM.
 
Old 12-23-2013, 01:51 AM   #10
enorbet
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Greetings
It can be really hard adjusting to this "Disposable Society" when sone od us were brought up with "Waste not, want not" and I am often guilty of hanging on to hardware too long. I almost wrote "long past it's usefulness" but that's actually the problem. If all one does with a PC is the usual surf, game, social network, etc these items are quite capable as hardware of handling that load. It's difficult to accept that I need to throw away hardware that still works fine.

That said, I seem to be learning. Unless I choose to see it as a challenge and/or fun, my time is worth something and at some point, even if I calculate that time is worth minimum wage the time spent finagling some old hardware has been worth enough to buy one that is supported and will "go right it". It is sometimes rather startling to discover that $20-$30 will now buy something that used to cost $200.

However "speaking" in a sarcastic way that feels like you walked into a room and someone got a look on their face akin to the one where another just ate an extra large bean burrito w/ garlic and broccoli (for good measure , of course) and farted in the vicinity of your face, is really more a reflection on the elitist respondant than the thrifty OP. I'm making jokes but unless we want to see LQ evaporate, such self-serving behaviour is at least as counter-productive as hanging on to "old junk"...... imho, of course Nobody likes to hang out in an area that feels unfriendly.
 
Old 12-23-2013, 03:38 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by enorbet View Post
It can be really hard adjusting to this "Disposable Society" when sone od us were brought up with "Waste not, want not" and I am often guilty of hanging on to hardware too long. I almost wrote "long past it's usefulness" but that's actually the problem. If all one does with a PC is the usual surf, game, social network, etc these items are quite capable as hardware of handling that load. It's difficult to accept that I need to throw away hardware that still works fine.
You don't have to throw away anything, you just have to stop throwing away the old software (that fits the old hardware). That is the disposable society, we're talking about. My 15 years old 6x86MX-powered i430VX PCI/ISA machine is still running Slackware 11.0 (released 2006, last updated 2012) with Linux 2.4 just fine.

You just can't expect to put current software on a PC ten years older, just because it shares a x86 CPU with modern machines. You can do operating system upgrades for some time (like five years), then you better stay on a supported release for another five years. After then you have an antique and you are on your own.

So if Slackware 14.0 runs flawless on a Pentium 4, just stay with it. It will get patches until at least 2017.
 
Old 12-23-2013, 06:13 AM   #12
TobiSGD
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jtsn View Post
Every hardware component has its driver support lifecycle and the Geforce4 MX is way beyond that.

nouveau(4) was actually meant as a replacement for the nv(4) driver, which doesn't work on modern (post 2008) nVidia GPUs. nv(4) is still part of Slackware 14.1 and should support Geforce4 MX just fine. Just uninstall and blacklist nouveau.
Npuveau is working fine for me on Salix 13.37 with a Geforce 2 MX videocard (the Geforce 4 MX is just a 2 MX on steroids). If the driver worked back then and now does not anymore I would call that a regression and just file a bug. From my experience with the radeon developers, and I think the nouveau developers belong into the same category, those people are very helpful and will help you fix this if it is a driver problem.
 
Old 12-23-2013, 11:44 AM   #13
jtsn
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TobiSGD View Post
If the driver worked back then and now does not anymore I would call that a regression and just file a bug.
How long do you think a bugfix lasts until stuff breaks again and nobody notices? Remember the proprietary CD-ROM drivers once included in the Linux kernel? Or the completely broken 386 support?

The right thing to do would be separating the legacy code and completely freeze it in binary form.
 
Old 12-23-2013, 12:39 PM   #14
John VV
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did you downgrade Xorg to 1.12 or OLDER !
the 96 driver will NOT work on the newer versions of Xorg
so 1.13,1.14,1.15 are all too new

On my OLD machine i have a gforce2
but the nouveau driver dose work BUT WITHOUT THE FAN
so after 5 min. the computer auto shuts down once the card overheats

-- there is NO thermometer on the 13 year old MOBO

On some setups for the GF 2 & 4 the nouveau driver will work without problems , on other setup's ???

Last edited by John VV; 12-23-2013 at 12:43 PM.
 
Old 12-28-2013, 06:54 AM   #15
TobiSGD
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jtsn View Post
How long do you think a bugfix lasts until stuff breaks again and nobody notices? Remember the proprietary CD-ROM drivers once included in the Linux kernel? Or the completely broken 386 support?

The right thing to do would be separating the legacy code and completely freeze it in binary form.
If nobody notices it then most likely nobody is using it. In that case I would support your position to separate that code. But we have alone in this thread at least two people using this hardware, so I would rather think that fixing the code is the way to go here.
 
  


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