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Thread: Supporting Old Hardware In X Gets Brought Up Again

  1. #11
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    Whats the big deal?

    Old monitors (and such must have existed in the first half of the 90ies) with a low resolution normally need a xorg.conf just because most of them will not work properly anymore.
    Out of four CRT's all around 10 years old I have (had), are only 2 functioning right now and both have developed some weird quirks by which you need to define certain settings by hand. And those screens do know resolutions up to 1200x1600.

  2. #12
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    I don't understand what all the fuss is about. Even my first computer's 14" screen (Compaq Presario - 1994) supported 1024x768 non-interlaced. This would only be a problem in something like this: http://www.old-computers.com/MUSEUM/....asp?c=19&st=1 but with 640KB of RAM I doubt anyone is going to be using the latest X.org with it.

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by siride View Post
    It doesn't matter if they do or don't. The point is that Luc's fits aren't really newsworthy in the first place.
    They are however, hilarious!

  4. #14
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    Xorg is struggling to keep the Linux Desktop experience on par with commercial OSes, yet the few opensource devs working on it have to maintain loads of legacy stuff for those people running old hardware? If you have old hardware, use old Xorg. Whats the problem with that?

  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by devius View Post
    I don't understand what all the fuss is about. Even my first computer's 14" screen (Compaq Presario - 1994) supported 1024x768 non-interlaced.
    Me neither. The oldest CRT monitor I've used was a mid-1995 vintage 15" CRT that also predated Plug'n'Play, and that easily supported 1024x768. (Being a bit above bottom-of-the-range, I think it may have even supported 1280x1024 non-interlaced too.)

    At this point, most of the CRT monitors in use that don't support 1024x768 are probably either never going to get used with a more modern X.org or are exotic fixed-sync beasts that required a custom configuration anyway.

    Incidentally, Corbin's XGI Volari is positively Linux-friendly. My girlfriend has several 3dlabs Wildcat III cards lying around that don't work at all on modern Linux - no modesetting or anything.

  6. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by TemplarGR View Post
    Do you really need an up to date distro for that PII 450mhz with 64mb ram and TNT GPU?
    Yes. I want the latest firefox and stuff.

    I actually do use hardware that's over 10 years old. A Dell Latitude CPt Celeron 500 for example. Put Lubuntu on it and it works like a charm. I have to admit, it does have 1024x768.

    And I can perfectly walk into a store today and buy a netbook with a 1024x600-ish resolution. I hope that won't be a problem.

  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by W3ird_N3rd View Post
    Yes. I want the latest firefox and stuff.

    I actually do use hardware that's over 10 years old. A Dell Latitude CPt Celeron 500 for example. Put Lubuntu on it and it works like a charm. I have to admit, it does have 1024x768.

    And I can perfectly walk into a store today and buy a netbook with a 1024x600-ish resolution. I hope that won't be a problem.
    You can have the latest firefox and stuff on older distros too. Plus, i believe the latest firefox won't run nicely on such a machine, if at all...

  8. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by W3ird_N3rd View Post
    And I can perfectly walk into a store today and buy a netbook with a 1024x600-ish resolution. I hope that won't be a problem.
    This default only applies if the resolution and pixel clock aren't specified by something else (e.g. EDID or xorg.conf). It's only expected to cause problems for displays that lack DDC/EDID and don't support 1024x768p (which has been around since the early 1990s). That's why one dev talked about using hardware "old enough to have reached the age of consent in most of the world".

  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by TemplarGR View Post
    You can have the latest firefox and stuff on older distros too.
    Without compiling it yourself, which would be a pain in the behind on such a machine.
    Plus, i believe the latest firefox won't run nicely on such a machine, if at all...
    No big problem, given enough memory.

    But that's one of the things I love about Linux. Just upgrade your memory and you're good to go for another five years. Microsoft would just laugh at you and tell you to go buy a new computer.

    http://vimeo.com/14388358
    Quote Originally Posted by Ex-Cyber View Post
    This default only applies if the resolution and pixel clock aren't specified by something else (e.g. EDID or xorg.conf). It's only expected to cause problems for displays that lack DDC/EDID and don't support 1024x768p (which has been around since the early 1990s). That's why one dev talked about using hardware "old enough to have reached the age of consent in most of the world".
    Okay, so it's not really something to worry about. Only 10+ year old CRTs could be a problem and I sort of suspect most of them are dead anyway or have been (or should be) replaced by LCDs.

    But, say, an ATi Mach64 would be a completely different story. I have a perfectly working Mach64 and it's good enough for a server, even today.

  10. #20
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    X.Org has discontinued a lot of the old input drivers already, and I wouldn't be surprised to see older video drivers like rendition and i740 join them eventually.

    They better not drop support for i740! All I have to do with mine is solder a new DE15F connector on it and it will be as good as new!

    Realistically though, many older 3D games don't work with the old cards well even if they meet the performance requirements. A lot of them are hideous on 16-bit era cards because they use texture sizes the cards can't handle.

    I wonder if it would be feasible to have hardware requirement templates in software packages so that package managers could check before installing if the system is adequate. This information could then be checked against hardware specs and application popularity (like Ubuntu's popularity contest) to determine what drivers are worth supporting.

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