fglrx and KDE

Wolfgang Jeltsch 4cqncnl7 at acme.softbase.org
Thu May 7 13:42:29 UTC 2009

Am Donnerstag, 7. Mai 2009 15:03 schrieb clay weber:
> Wolfgang Jeltsch wrote:
> > Hello,
> >
> > I use Kubuntu Jaunty with the open source radeon driver. My graphics chip
> > is (most likely) an RS480.
> >
> > KDE’s desktop effects aren’t smooth with this setup. However, desktop
> > effects worked quite well when I used Ubuntu Intrepid with Compiz Fusion
> > and the proprietary fglrx driver. I’ve heard that 3D performance is
> > better with the fglrx driver. So I wonder if the performance problems
> > have to do with KDE or with the open source driver. Has anyone
> > experiences with KDE vs. GNOME/Compiz Fusion and radeon vs. fglrx?
> >
> > Furthermore, I’ve heard that X.org 1.6 won’t come with an fglrx driver
> > that works with older chips (like, e.g, my RS480). Is this true?
> >
> > Best wishes,
> > Wolfgang
> The older versions of fglrx do not work with Xorg 1.6. There is a
> compatible fglrx driver available from the repos, I am using it with my
> Radeon HD 3200. But that driver does not support some (not very) older
> cards anymore.
> If your card is not supported by the new fglrx driver, you can read here
> for some info on the ati/radeon driver:
> https://help.ubuntu.com/community/RadeonDriver
> Specifically the links at the bottom have some good info for xorg tweaks
> for the closed source driver.
> Clay Weber


thank you for your info.

The page, you mentioned, says: “This driver is not as fast as the 
closed-source, proprietary "fglrx" driver from AMD/ATI Inc.” This is, of 
course, not very specific. Are there any benchmarks? Should the open source 
driver be okay for desktop effects or is it likely that it won’t even be able 
to make desktop effects smooth?

Regarding the “Tweaking The Driver” section: The EnablePageFlip option should 
cause a speedup but only works with XAA. However, switching from XAA to EXA 
also speeds things up. What is usually faster: XAA + EnablePageFlip or EXA? 
If I understand the section correctly, option TripleBuffer only helps when 
playing videos, so it doesn’t help speeding up pure desktop effects. Is this 

I’ve also already seen pages which suggest to use certain undocumented 
options. Is there some documentation about these undocumented options 
(actually a contradiction in itself :-( ) somewhere on the web? Is there a 
more comprehensive howto about speeding up desktop effects etc.?

Best wishes,

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