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Revision as of 04:53, 19 February 2012 by Agajan (talk | contribs) (new information about disappearance of gma500 driver from F16 kernel-3.2)

Update - February 18, 2012. I just installed the latest F16 updates on my netbook. I quickly discovered that the open source gma500 driver is no longer being built in new kernels. You might want to try the 3.2.2-1.fc16 kernel. (That is the build that works on my netbook.) I haven't yet tested the instructions below on Linux 3.2 kernels, but you might also want to try that.

January 28, 2012. The latest kernel (3.2.2-1.fc16) includes the open source gma500 driver. It is working well on my Dell Inspiron Mini 12. Suspend and resume are also working now. When the login screen appears after booting, I still have to press Ctrl-Alt-Backspace to fix the display resolution.

Using the new open source gma500 driver, I have been able to run Fedora 15 and 16 on a Dell Inspiron Mini 12 netbook with a display resolution of 1280x800. I am using the XFCE Desktop. I haven't tested GNOME 3 with this driver.

To do this, I compiled a custom kernel which enables the gma500 driver and disables some framebuffer drivers. (I'm not sure why this has to be done. Maybe it is because there is no DDX driver for the gma500 kernel module.)

To build a custom kernel, see Building a custom kernel. You do not have to run make menuconfig or apply any patches. However, you should modify the SOURCES/config-generic file. Search for each of these options in the file and modify them to be the same as in the following listing.

# CONFIG_FB_VGA16 is not set
# CONFIG_FB_VESA is not set

For the 3.1 kernel, you also need to add three more options to the config-generic file. How you set these depends on what version of the GMA 500 hardware you have.

# CONFIG_DRM_PSB_MRST is not set
# CONFIG_DRM_PSB_MFLD is not set
# CONFIG_DRM_PSB_CDV is not set

When I boot the computer with the custom kernel, the display is not correct at the GDM Login screen. If I press Control-Alt-Backspace, the display becomes correct.

Suspend doesn't work yet for me, but otherwise this driver seems to be working quite well.