VNC, DRI, DRM and other acronyms

I got an email from someone using VirtualGL to assist with doing 3D visualization over the network, and after discovering that ‘VNC is an “admin nightmare”‘ found my VNC Session Manager. It’s been a while since I tinkered with the source, so I dusted it off and started cleaning it up (It still runs on my FC3 box at home).

So, there’s a new release with features such as: A session chooser (if zenity is detected as installed) that lists your running sessions and allows you to choose which one to reconnect to. There are also fixes to make NFS home directories work correctly. Extra debugging was added by Adam Bradley at Novell, and the TurboVNC client now also has a patch.

So after getting all the VNC code working I wanted to test it out on my machine: a Dell Latitude CPx with ATI Rage Mobility – aka the ati mach64 chipset – aka the one that doesn’t have DRI support enabled by default in the in x.org 6.8.2 build :-(

Sooooo after an entire day of searching, finding, download, installing, testing, failing (need kernel source, install X drivers with correct filenames, X won’t load video drivers with mismatched versions, aaaargh), fueled mainly by a single post on the ubuntu forums I’ve found the trick. The USE=”insecure-drivers” switch is the trick (in Gentoo), but in Fedora it’s BuildDevelDRIDrivers as I found the next morning via an excellent post on how to patch and build the xorg source. The dri driver has been fixed to be secure in x.org 7.2, and hence will build by default for new versions. Once the new x.org rpm had been built and installed (and all the other failed installs had been cleaned up), I had a working mach64 with direct rendering enabled!

Now to get the vglrun part working…. At the moment it complains that it “Could not obtain Pbuffer-capable RGB visual on the server” :-(

2 comments on “VNC, DRI, DRM and other acronyms

  1. Hey,

    just wondering if you had any luck with virtualGL. I was trying similar things and got the same error. I was wondering whether it was something to do with Xorg settings but then my graphics card packed in…

    If you have any luck, would you post it? I’ll comment if I get it working.

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