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Thread: Hardware acceleration on intel card

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2019
    Beans
    2

    Hardware acceleration on intel card

    Hi,

    I have an old Dell laptop (Inspiron 6400) which I want to use for watching TV live streams and Youtube.
    Since the system is x86, I could only install Ubuntu 16.04:

    Code:
    $ lsb_release -a
    No LSB modules are available.
    Distributor ID: Ubuntu
    Description: Ubuntu 16.04.5 LTS
    Release: 16.04
    Codename: xenial
    My problem is that both Chromium and Firefox consume nearly 100% CPU when watching videos. Seemingly hardware acceleration is not working. For Chromium I was told to check via

    Code:
    chrome://media-internals/
    video_decoder: FFmpegVideoDecoder
    (it should be GpuVideoDecoder!)

    I first checked which graphics card is in use (sorry, it's in German):

    Code:
    $ sudo lshw -c video
      *-display:0             
           Beschreibung: VGA compatible controller
           Produkt: Mobile 945GM/GMS, 943/940GML Express Integrated Graphics Controller
           Hersteller: Intel Corporation
           Physische ID: 2
           Bus-Informationen: pci@0000:00:02.0
           Version: 03
           Breite: 32 bits
           Takt: 33MHz
           Fähigkeiten: msi pm vga_controller bus_master cap_list rom
           Konfiguration: driver=i915 latency=0
           Ressourcen: irq:16 memory:eff00000-eff7ffff ioport:eff8(Größe=8) memory:d0000000-dfffffff memory:efec0000-efefffff memory:c0000-dffff
      *-display:1 UNGEFORDERT
           Beschreibung: Display controller
           Produkt: Mobile 945GM/GMS/GME, 943/940GML Express Integrated Graphics Controller
           Hersteller: Intel Corporation
           Physische ID: 2.1
           Bus-Informationen: pci@0000:00:02.1
           Version: 03
           Breite: 32 bits
           Takt: 33MHz
           Fähigkeiten: pm bus_master cap_list
           Konfiguration: latency=0
           Ressourcen: memory:eff80000-efffffff

    Corresponding driver files are here:

    Code:
    $ ls /usr/lib/i386-linux-gnu/dri
    dummy_drv_video.so  nouveau_drv_video.so  radeon_dri.so
    i915_dri.so         nouveau_vieux_dri.so  radeonsi_dri.so
    i965_dri.so         r200_dri.so           radeonsi_drv_video.so
    i965_drv_video.so   r300_dri.so           swrast_dri.so
    kms_swrast_dri.so   r600_dri.so           virtio_gpu_dri.so
    nouveau_dri.so      r600_drv_video.so     vmwgfx_dri.so
    Here is the output of vainfo:

    Code:
    $ vainfo
    libva info: VA-API version 0.39.0
    libva info: va_getDriverName() returns 0
    libva info: Trying to open /usr/lib/i386-linux-gnu/dri/i915_drv_video.so
    libva info: va_openDriver() returns -1
    vaInitialize failed with error code -1 (unknown libva error),exit
    Interestingly vainfo is looking for
    i915_drv_video.so but my system only has
    i965_drv_video.so. Is this maybe also the cause for Chromium failing to use
    hardware acceleration?

    I'm out of ideas at this point. I couldn't find any resource on how to install a
    driver version which has this file. Nor do I know if vaapi has configuration
    options for changing the file it is looking for.

    Any idea how to solve this?

    I found some related posts but they are so deep in the details that I can't really follow:
    https://alioth-lists.debian.net/pipe...ry/031015.html
    https://bugs.debian.org/cgi-bin/bugr...cgi?bug=704801

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Sunny Southend-on-Sea
    Beans
    6,987
    Distro
    Kubuntu 18.04 Bionic Beaver

    Re: Hardware acceleration on intel card

    Quote Originally Posted by nicolasr75 View Post
    Is this maybe also the cause for Chromium failing to use
    hardware acceleration?
    Not directly. Hardware acceleration wouldn't work in the browser regardless.

    The Chromium developers don't trust the drivers to do the right thing in all cases, so they've simply disabled hardware acceleration for everyone on Linux. There are builds that will enable hardware acceleration through VA-API (the hardware acceleration that Intel uses), but you have to search them out, and possibly change some settings.

    For diagnosing where you stand with hardware acceleration, I'd suggest using a local file using an encoding that you should have hardware acceleration for, and using mpv to try playing it, since that can be made to use whichever hardware acceleration is available.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2019
    Beans
    2

    Re: Hardware acceleration on intel card

    I will try what you suggest.

    Just because I forgot to mention it:
    I installed a beta Chromium with the hardware acceleration option as described here:
    https://www.linuxuprising.com/2018/0...celerated.html
    So the option is available now but it doesn't work. I still suspect that it has to do with
    the missing file
    i915_drv_video.so.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Beans
    17,215

    Re: Hardware acceleration on intel card

    That chipset is based on Intel GMA 950 which has no support for hardware decoding of pretty much anything, (possibly just MPEG2 videos
    There won't be vaapi support available thru libva for it.
    Last edited by mc4man; January 24th, 2019 at 01:08 AM. Reason: link

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Pennsylvania
    Beans
    2,874
    Distro
    Xubuntu

    Re: Hardware acceleration on intel card

    Can you give us the specs on that machine? CPU cores and speed, amount of RAM. I did a little research and that could have been ordered in many different configurations. However, the base config is probably not enough to stream full screen.

    Also, are you run an ad blocker? If not, at least try uBlock in Firefox. If you are running an ad blocker, switch to uBlock and be sure to disable the other one.

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