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Thread: How to configure X for an iMac G3?

  1. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2009

    Re: How to configure X for an iMac G3?

    UPDATE - WOW! I don't read lol... Earlier this was posted as a solution in the same thread. Try the "UseFBDev" "false" as well since the original poster didn't add that in. That is what solved it for me.

    WOW! Finally found a solution. Can't take credit though I remember finding it somewhere on the Gentoo forums. This was actually doing Xfce on Gentoo with Xorg 1.5.3, but hopefully it'll work for Jaunty's Xorg 1.6.0. I haven't been able to find time to officially test it though.

    There's this driver called Int10 and I believe it supports some Intel integrated graphics chips... Anyway it causes the r128 driver to crash so just disable it and set UseFBDev to "false" like so (Both entries go underneath Section "Device":

    Option      "UseFBDev"         	"false"
    Option	    "NoInt10"		"true"
    For 1.5.3 on Gentoo, I was able to use the fbdev driver (linux's generic video card driver as I understand it) to get the video working without changing anything in the xorg.conf besides the driver to use. Although, I have noticed better performance with r128 and it would probably shine when comparing it to fbdev playing video.

    And you can keep your glx and your dri on for acceleration. (Yes you can eat the cake too!) This worked for 1.5.3 on Gentoo so it'd be nice for some confirmation on Jaunty...

    Here's the full xorg.conf under 1.5.3 as generated by Xorg --confgure under Gentoo... it may be useful. Should be very similar to what Jaunty's 1.6.0 should give you:

    Section "ServerLayout"
    	Identifier     " Configured"
    	Screen      0  "Screen0" 0 0
    	InputDevice    "Mouse0" "CorePointer"
    	InputDevice    "Keyboard0" "CoreKeyboard"
    Section "Files"
    	ModulePath   "/usr/lib/xorg/modules"
    	FontPath     "/usr/share/fonts/misc/"
    	FontPath     "/usr/share/fonts/TTF/"
    	FontPath     "/usr/share/fonts/OTF"
    	FontPath     "/usr/share/fonts/Type1/"
    	FontPath     "/usr/share/fonts/100dpi/"
    	FontPath     "/usr/share/fonts/75dpi/"
    Section "Module"
    	Load  "dri"
    	Load  "extmod"
    	Load  "dbe"
    	Load  "glx"
    	Load  "xtrap"
    	Load  "record"
    Section "InputDevice"
    	Identifier  "Keyboard0"
    	Driver      "kbd"
    Section "InputDevice"
    	Identifier  "Mouse0"
    	Driver      "mouse"
    	Option	    "Protocol" "auto"
    	Option	    "Device" "/dev/input/mice"
    	Option	    "ZAxisMapping" "4 5 6 7"
    Section "Monitor"
    	Identifier   "Monitor0"
    	VendorName   "Monitor Vendor"
    	ModelName    "Monitor Model"
    	Option       "DPMS"
    	HorizSync    58-62
            VertRefresh  75-117	
    Section "Device"
            ### Available Driver options are:-
            ### Values: <i>: integer, <f>: float, <bool>: "True"/"False",
            ### <string>: "String", <freq>: "<f> Hz/kHz/MHz"
            ### [arg]: arg optional
            #Option     "NoAccel"            	# [<bool>]
            #Option     "SWcursor"           	# [<bool>]
            #Option     "Dac6Bit"            	# [<bool>]
            #Option     "Dac8Bit"            	# [<bool>]
            #Option     "DMAForXv"           	# [<bool>]
            #Option     "ForcePCIMode"       	# [<bool>]
            #Option     "CCEPIOMode"         	# [<bool>]
            #Option     "CCENoSecurity"      	# [<bool>]
            #Option     "CCEusecTimeout"     	# <i>
            #Option     "AGPMode"            	# <i>
            #Option     "AGPSize"            	# <i>
            #Option     "RingSize"           	# <i>
            #Option     "BufferSize"         	# <i>
            #Option     "EnablePageFlip"     	# [<bool>]
            #Option     "Display"            	# <str>
            #Option     "PanelWidth"         	# <i>
            #Option     "PanelHeight"        	# <i>
            #Option     "ProgramFPRegs"      	# [<bool>]
            Option      "UseFBDev"         	"false"	# [<bool>]
            #Option     "VideoKey"           	# <i>
            #Option     "ShowCache"          	# [<bool>]
            #Option     "VGAAccess"          	# [<bool>]
    	Option	    "NoInt10"		"true"  # [<bool>]
    	Identifier  "Card0"
    	Driver      "r128"
    	VendorName  "ATI Technologies Inc"
    	BoardName   "Rage 128 PR/PRO AGP 4x TMDS"
    	BusID       "PCI:0:16:0"
    Section "Screen"
    	Identifier "Screen0"
    	Device     "Card0"
    	Monitor    "Monitor0"
    	DefaultDepth 24
    	SubSection "Display"
    		Viewport   0 0
    		Depth     1
    	SubSection "Display"
    		Viewport   0 0
    		Depth     4
    	SubSection "Display"
    		Viewport   0 0
    		Depth     8
    	SubSection "Display"
    		Viewport   0 0
    		Depth     15
    	SubSection "Display"
    		Viewport   0 0
    		Depth     16
    	SubSection "Display"
    		Viewport   0 0
    		Depth     24
    Last edited by rootMBX; May 6th, 2009 at 10:27 PM.

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2006

    Re: How to configure X for an iMac G3?

    Thanks for that submission. I hope some other G3 iMac users can test that out, especially with Jaunty.

    That was especially nice of a Gentoo user helping out his fellow ppc'ers!

    Perhaps we can return the favor!
    20" G5 iMac - AMD64 HP desktop

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Oct 2008

    Re: How to configure X for an iMac G3?

    Using the default xorg.conf that is generated with a jaunty install on an iMac G3, we get gnome to start just fine after install. No video=ofonly, no HorizSync or VertRefresh changes to xorg.conf required. The problem is that it's running in low-graphics mode.

    Errors indicated include: (EE) Unable to find a valid framebuffer device (EE) R128(0) failed to open framebuffer device and (EE) screens found but none usable.

    We've tried the xorg.conf changes listed in this thread ("UseFBDev" "false" and "NoInt10" "true") as well as others and have had no luck. Even tried generating a new xorg.conf using Xorg -configure and modifying it with no success.

    iMac is a 600Mhz 750CXe with 512MB RAM. The video card in this iMac is an ATI Rage 128 Pro Ultra TR

    Any suggestions?
    Last edited by roym4; May 7th, 2009 at 08:09 PM.

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Mar 2009

    Re: How to configure X for an iMac G3?

    That's a shame. I was looking forward to an easy install with Xubuntu 9.04 on some other iMac G3s. Oh well... If I figure out how to get it working with *buntu Distros I'll let you know.

    On the flip side, Gentoo DOES work for sure... If your willing to take the few days it takes to do your first setup (TOOK ME FOUR ), but it was worth it.

    Expect to learn a lot about Linux and find someone who is knowledgeable so you can ask them questions along the way and follow the Gentoo PPC Handbook religiously!

    Xfce is much snappier on Gentoo because it's bare minimum and you pick and choose what processes you want to use and how to build the distro, but 4.6 is not stable yet in the portage tree, just 4.4.x.

    EDIT: BTW the above xorg.conf was done on a 400MHz iMac G3. Like it says in the file, the video card is an ATI Rage 128 PR/PRO AGP 4x TMDS. I've read somewhere that you can do some editing in the xorg.conf and force it to PCI mode, but you'll lose a good amount of speed, especially while watching video.
    Last edited by rootMBX; May 8th, 2009 at 07:41 AM. Reason: A bit more info...

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Asheville, NC

    Re: How to configure X for an iMac G3?

    [SOLVED] Installing Xubuntu Jaunty on iMac G3, 266mHz
    Hi guys!

    Thanks so much for the leads here - I was trying to get Xubuntu Jaunty running on an old 266mhz blueberry mac. Jaunty doesn't include all those options in xorg.conf by default, but I was able to piece together a solution from your input here. This is what worked for me:

    Very simply:
    • Boot from livecd - (I used live-powerpc-nosplash option.)
    • Wait for it to run its course, till you get to grey screen.
    • Wait another 5 minutes or so, just to make sure it's not gonna boot. =)
    • Hit Ctrl-Option-F1 to get to a terminal.
    • Check for the address of your monitor using lspci - (terminal - type lspci. Look for an address like "pci:00:12.0" & note this down)
    • Open xorg.conf for editing:
      sudo nano /etc/X11/xorg.conf
      Enter the following options under appropriate sections:
      Section - Device:
      "pci 0:12:0" (or whatever yours was from lspci)
      UseFBDev "false"
      Driver "ati"

      Section - Monitor:
      Horizsync 58-62
      Vertrefresh 74-118
      Hit Ctrl-O to save
      Hit Ctrl-X to exit editor
    • Now - Restart X server
    • ... wait some more
      And... (fingers crossed) Voila! You should get a working Xubuntu desktop

    I hope this is helpful to someone else with a (not so) outdated iMac.

  6. #16
    Join Date
    Aug 2005

    Re: How to configure X for an iMac G3?

    I've installed Jaunty on a 500MHz blue slot loading G3 iMac and am also having the problem of only being able to run it in low-res mode (800x600 8bit). After editing xorg.conf to use the r128 driver, when X starts I get the message about no framebuffers and it permits me to fall back to the same state as the default configuration using the fbdev driver. Looking at xorg.0.log I saw that there are no framebuffers defined and so one is created at /etc/fb0. I think that if I use fbset in rc.local to create the framebuffers before X starts the r128 driver will work. However, I don't know the correct values to create a fb.modes file. (Well actually I do have the one set of settings that using fbdev in xorg.conf creates.) Is there anyone with an iMac and an ATI Rage 128 video card running an older version of Ubuntu who could post the contents of their /etc/fb.modes file or the output from sudo fbset and sudo fbset -x?

  7. #17
    Join Date
    Aug 2005

    Re: How to configure X for an iMac G3?

    A followup to my last post---I've found a way to get a 1024x768 desktop.

    In order to run at 1024x768 with 24[?] bit color I changed the video=ofonly to video=1024x768@60 in /etc/yaboot.conf and then wrote the changes to the boot sector using ybin (See I based my change on trial and error using the information in Kernel arguments for PPC ( modified to use the format HRESxVRES@RefreshRate instead of the xxxxx:vmode:vv,cmode:cc format.

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