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Re: NetBSD 6.0/amd64 on a Latitude E5500 (X11 related)

On Sat, Dec 01, 2012 at 11:39:20AM +0100, iMil wrote:
> Hi,
> At a glance, everything seemed to work, but within a
> couple of minutes, I noticed the CPU was 100% busy when
> under X11. Also, this laptop used to work perfectly with
> DRI/DRM, but as shows,
> that issue is well known. Last but not least, www/firefox
> is nearly unusable because some portions of the viewed
> website are shown "scrambled".

I had the same trouble, with my MacBook4,1 (amd64).
The "scrambled" stuff is a known issue with cairo, I believe.
It has been fixed and pulled up to the NetBSD 6 and 6.0 branches:

Simply downloading and extracting the X sets of the daily binary
snapshots fixed this for me, but it's still a pain for new users
who will just install 6.0 and don't even know that they can get
daily snapshots, let alone what a "pullup" means and that such a
snapshot will fix it.

The DRI issue is indeed still outstanding.  I'm unsure if this
really is the cause but I *think* my xrandr is nonfunctional because
of this too, which means that e.g. games won't be able to change the
screen's resolution at runtime.

> All that failures put together, I decided to take another
> option: use pkgsrc's modular Xorg.

I used modular Xorg a few times in the past, but I learned not
to do that as the Xorg upstream release updates kept breaking
perfectly functional drivers.  I got glitches and crashes at
various points in time.  The shitty state of Xorg in base is just
a reflection of the basically nonexistent quality control that
the Xorg upstream project seems to have for their drivers.
At least NetBSD tries its best at stabilising and providing a
sane snapshot from the grabbag of crappiness that's the
upstream releases.  pkgsrc's xorg isn't nearly as well-controlled.

> We, at NetBSDfr, maintain a repository at

That's pretty cool!  These third-party repos should be advertised
better as I thought there weren't any *at all*.  Are there others?
Particularly related to things like mplayer and other "legally murky"
software.  For some reason on most Linuxen there's no problem getting
binary packages for mplayer and vlc with full codecs, but on NetBSD
there's no such thing (and vlc is nonfunctional considering it won't
load 99% of the videos out there).  I think third party repos could
fix this situation.

Also, try installing packages from the "official" binary repos, and
then run pkg_admin audit against it....

> One pkgin export / import later, I recovered a fully functionnal
> X11 environment, no CPU burns, no firefox glitches. I still
> haven't tried DRI/DRM but from what the kernel says, I presume
> it will work also.

I'd love to try this but I still consider Xorg's release crapshoot
too risky.  It's a shame there's no other free X implementation which
cares about non-Linux OSes.

"The process of preparing programs for a digital computer
 is especially attractive, not only because it can be economically
 and scientifically rewarding, but also because it can be an aesthetic
 experience much like composing poetry or music."
                                                        -- Donald Knuth

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