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Old 08-02-2004, 11:48 PM   #1
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Registered: Oct 2003
Location: Drouin, Australia
Distribution: Ubuntu 9:10
Posts: 19

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I have killed Xwindows trying to install Radeon driver upgrade

I have recently installed a Radeon 9600XT video card in one of my computers which runs dual boot Windows 2000/Red Hat 9.0 Linux. The Windows install went o.k, but my Linux installation showed a VESA driver. I downloaded a new driver from ATI last week to suit my original XFree86 Version 4.3.0 - ATI file fglrx-4.3.0-3.9.0.i386.rpm and tried to install it - install wasn't successful, and in the course of troubleshooting I ended up on the website, and decided to update my XWindows installation to XFree86 Ver 4.4.0, which looked like it might manage the display better. I selected the files and downloaded them and used for the installation.

The computer has now lost XWindows totally although I can still use the RH9.0 command line and access my files, however I am a bit wary of pressing on in the command line, as I basically do not consider myself sufficiently up to speed on Linux to do this with confidence.

I tried the Red Hat rescue routine, which got me back into a command line environment, and also tried re-installing Red Hat however when the computer boots up it ends in a loop which seems associated with an incomplete installation of XFree96 Ver. 4.4.0, the error message I am getting is the following :-

INIT: cannot execute "/etc/X11/prefdm" (repeated ten times) then
INIT: Id "x" respawning too fast : disabled for 5 minutes.

In between these messages, I can still access the command line and files, however my Linux books do not mention this message, and I am not sure what to do next.

I have tried renamimg to Xinstall.old and rebooting the computer, as I had hoped that that was the source of the problem, but no joy. I have (hopefully) back up copies of my original files, but do not know how to reverse the attempted installation.

Worse case scenario, I just format the hard drive, and start again with a fresh Linux install, but I figure I may as well learn how to drive Linux while I am at it - has to be heaps better than Windows I reckon.

Any help greatly appreciated,

Old 08-03-2004, 12:36 AM   #2
Registered: Apr 2004
Location: AL, USA
Distribution: FC4, Gentoo
Posts: 58

Rep: Reputation: 15
ATI hasn't updated their drivers in a while.. and their current drivers replace the vesa driver with their driver, which is probably the culprit.

Only thing I can think to do is find out what files were installed (I forgot the command) and find someone with RH9 and the same kernel as you and replace those files, or just recompile your kernel. But a fresh install sounds like something I would do...
Old 08-03-2004, 12:57 AM   #3
Registered: Oct 2003
Distribution: Ubuntu 7.04
Posts: 889
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U should try the version of the ATI propietary drivers before the one u have.

Its 3.7.6 I believe. And its the one that I used with my 9600 and Red Hat 9 (stock kernel, stock

XFree86 display) , it worked fine. But it wasnt good as my nvidia cards.

Either way, if u want reinstall RedHat 9 and just use the earlier version

(google FGLRX 3.7.6 download, at and just install that version,

since the newest driver from ATI, is realy nothing different then that. Sry I couldnt help u fix

ur display problem, im not that person to go into depth on that subject.


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