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Old 01-23-2004, 11:02 AM   #1
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Registered: Jan 2004
Distribution: SUSE 9.0 Professional
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Question Graphics, splash screen, and Joystick in SUSE 9.0 Professional

Hello there! After several weeks of procrastination, I have finally gotten my lazy butt in gear and made the leap into the open-source universe. What an educational experience it was! SUSE 9.0 Pro installed in 20 minutes with little fuss and detected my rather challenging hardware setup just fine (it even had native support for my Pinnacle PCTV card... kewl! ). Performance-wise, it makes Windows XP Pro seem bloated; this thing runs like a thoroughbred on my Athlon.

The fun didn't come without problems, though - I need your help in fixing certain issues that have left me well and truly stumped (maybe it's just fatigue from staying up until 0530 because of install-fever... ) Here are the gripes:

1) How do you enable 3D support and change colour depth without crashing the X server? This has been a source of endless frustration for me (and led to issue #2 below). I ended up having to reinstall everything because there would be no monitor output (no picture on my monitor, but Linux is running - you can tell because of the HDD activity light) when the system reaches runlevel 5 (full GUI, X server started). The system would boot to failsafe/console only but would give the same symptom when the command startx was executed.

This seems to be the problem with other Linux distros I have tried on my machine - the installation runs fine, but when the X server is started, the monitor output goes bye-bye. It put me off Linux for a while - we had thought it a graphics card/monitor issue.

SUSE 9.0 Pro worked well the first time I installed it, but I made a foolish Mi$take made by most Windows users - I changed the colour depth from 16-bit to 24-bit and enabled 3D acceleration without testing the setup first. Now the GUI wouldn't load. I tried Failsafe and Rescue modes... but realised that tampering with the XF86 config files would only aggravate the situation... I tried a fresh install with the same result... I deleted the 20GB Linux partition and set it up again - now Linux is running, but I have no 3D and am on 16-bit colour (the default settings).

For your reference, my graphics hardware setup is:
- Sapphire Technologies Atlantis ATI Radeon 9200 (128MB DDR frame buffer, AGP 8x, VGA/TV-out/DVI)
- Samsung SyncMaster 152T TFT-LCD connected via DVI

SUSE detected this as:
- RV280 (I forgot the exact subtype suffix, but the GPU type is correct; I assume it is of the correct subtype)
- Samsung SyncMaster 4S

How do I enable 3D and 24-bit colour? Will installing ATI's drivers for Linux help? How do I change the monitor profile to the correct one? Please help 'cos I can't play 3D games!

2) How do I get the "silent mode" splash screen back? When I first installed SUSE 9.0, upon selecting Linux in the GRUB menu a purple splash screen with a progress bar was displayed, with the option to press F2 for verbose mode with a purple translucent background. Now I only get regular verbose mode with a penguin on top. Removing the Linux partition couldn't fix this... what gives?

3) Linux could not find my joystick. After setting up my sound card through YAST, I tried to set up the stick but was informed that my sound card apparently does not support a gameport.

My sound setup is:
-VIA onboard 6.1 channel AC'97 controller
- Micro$oft Sidewinder 3D Pro joystick (digital/analogue, connected to gameport, with rudder and throttle)

This setup works fine under Windows, but Linux can't find my gameport.

I quite understand why my modem doesn't work, though (it's a Winmodem so I need a new, external one ).

Thanks in advance - this is my first serious effort at getting Linux to work (well enough for everyday use) on my box. I'd highly appreciate it if someone can be of help!

Last edited by blue_blood; 01-23-2004 at 11:05 AM.
Old 01-23-2004, 11:54 AM   #2
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Registered: Oct 2003
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ATI drivers can be obtained from

There are a number of posts on this site if the support does not enable by default. Search for ATI and SUSE to find them all. There are a number of issues with these drivers. Also youll need the kernel source rpm as well. Should be on your disk if you have the pro version., or can get from the ftp site, but make sure it matches your kernel version.

Don;t know about the other issues as I'm fairly new to Suse myself.
Old 01-24-2004, 11:54 AM   #3
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Registered: Jan 2004
Distribution: SUSE 9.0 Professional
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Thanks for your help. I have downloaded the drivers. How do I back up my current settings? If the worst happens how do I roll back the driver and restore the system? I don't want to lose my data to a reinstall, but if the X server goes I can only logon in text mode.

The blank display problem occurs every time I change any setting in SaX - I changed my monitor's sync frequency and got the blank screen upon testing the configuration. Saving the config will make the GUI unusable!
Old 01-24-2004, 12:12 PM   #4
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It seems like whenever you open Sax you have to set everything even if you only want to change one setting....not positive about this, but that's what seemed to happen with me.

2) Open up /boot/grub/menu.lst and add splash=silent to your kernel options.

3) no idea, sorry...I don't have a stick.


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