Text consoles stay black - Hardware

This is a discussion on Text consoles stay black - Hardware ; After changing my xorg.conf to make use of Nvidia's TwinView feature with my TV, which works otherwise fine, tty1-6 stay black (Well, OK, there are some green little boxes on tty1 ^^). This is what I inserting in the Device ...

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Thread: Text consoles stay black

  1. Text consoles stay black

    After changing my xorg.conf to make use of Nvidia's TwinView feature with
    my TV, which works otherwise fine, tty1-6 stay black (Well, OK, there are
    some green little boxes on tty1 ^^). This is what I inserting in the
    Device section of my xorg.conf:

    Option "TwinView" "true"
    Option "TwinViewOrientation" "Clone"
    Option "TVOutFormat" "COMPOSITE"
    Option "TVStandard" "PAL-B"
    Option "SecondMonitorHorizSync" "30-50"
    Option "SecondMonitorVertRefresh" "60"
    Option "MetaModes"
    "1280x1024,1024x768;1024x768,1024x768;800x600,800x6 00;640x480,640x480"

    Strangely, when I comment it out again, I have to do a complete reboot to
    see the consoles, restarting the X server is not enough. Any idea what
    causes these problems and how I can fix it?

    Regards,
    ubi

  2. Re: Text consoles stay black

    On Tue, 06 Mar 2007 03:00:54 +0100, ubi staggered into the Black Sun and
    said:
    > After changing my xorg.conf to make use of Nvidia's TwinView feature
    > with my TV, which [otherwise works] fine, tty1-6 stay black. This is
    > what I [have] in the Device section of my xorg.conf:

    [snip very standard-looking TwinView config]

    Which version of the evil binary-only nVidia modules are you using?
    Which version of the kernel are you using? Which console are you using?
    Straight VGA, VESA framebuffer, nv framebuffer, or something else? I've
    had some problems with console switching and nvidia, but that was a long
    time ago, around the 6627 build.

    > Strangely, when I comment it out again, I have to do a complete reboot
    > to see the consoles, restarting the X server is not enough.


    The evil nVidia module does strange things to the video chipset, of
    course. If you're using the nv framebuffer console, starting X with
    nvidia may screw up the nv framebuffers. I haven't had any problems
    with straight VGA or VESA framebuffer and a TwinView-enabled nVidia
    card for the last 1.5 years.

    --
    Hope is gone and she confessed / When you lay your dreams to rest
    You can get what's second best / But it's hard to get enough...
    --David Wilcox, "Eye of the Hurricane"
    Matt G|There is no Darkness in Eternity/But only Light too dim for us to see

  3. Re: Text consoles stay black

    On Tue, 06 Mar 2007 09:35:07 -0600, Dances With Crows wrote:
    > Which version of the evil binary-only nVidia modules are you using?
    > Which version of the kernel are you using? Which console are you using?
    > Straight VGA, VESA framebuffer, nv framebuffer, or something else? I've
    > had some problems with console switching and nvidia, but that was a long
    > time ago, around the 6627 build.


    I'm using the vicious and wicked 8776 build with a 2.6.17-11-generic from
    Ubuntu. I specified the console resolution with the kernel parameter
    vga=791, that means I'm using a VESA framebuffer, right?

    > The evil nVidia module does strange things to the video chipset, of
    > course. If you're using the nv framebuffer console, starting X with
    > nvidia may screw up the nv framebuffers. I haven't had any problems
    > with straight VGA or VESA framebuffer and a TwinView-enabled nVidia card
    > for the last 1.5 years.


    I just tried setting vga=normal in my kernel options and the problem is
    gone, but a 80x25 lines console makes no real sense on my 19" screen...
    Btw, does vga=normal mean the "straight VGA" frambuffer you were talking
    about?


  4. Re: Text consoles stay black

    On Tue, 06 Mar 2007 17:44:13 +0100, ubi staggered into the Black Sun and
    said:
    > On Tue, 06 Mar 2007 09:35:07 -0600, Dances With Crows wrote:
    >> Which console are you using? Straight VGA, VESA framebuffer, nv
    >> framebuffer, or something else? I've had some problems with console
    >> switching and nvidia, but that was a long time ago, around the 6627

    > I'm using the vicious and wicked 8776 build with a 2.6.17-11-generic
    > from Ubuntu. I specified the console resolution with the kernel
    > parameter vga=791, that means I'm using a VESA framebuffer, right?


    Yep, vga=NNN gets you straight VGA text-only modes if NNN < 0x100 and
    VESA framebuffer modes if NNN >= 0x300. Docs are in
    /usr/src/linux/Documentation/fb/vesafb.txt . Build 8776 of the evil
    nvidia modules works fine here, been using it ever since it was marked
    stable in Gentoo.

    >> I haven't had any problems with straight VGA or VESA framebuffer and
    >> a TwinView-enabled nVidia card for the last 1.5 years.

    > I just tried setting vga=normal in my kernel options and the problem
    > is gone, but a 80x25 lines console makes no real sense on my 19"
    > screen...


    If X is running, virtual consoles are sorta superfluous as you can
    always start another xterm/konsole/eterm. If you want something that's
    faster than VESA framebuffer and more than 80x25, see what you can get
    from vga=ask. HTH,

    --
    I think it's a beautiful day to go to the zoo and feed the ducks.
    To the lions.
    --Brian Kantor
    Matt G|There is no Darkness in Eternity/But only Light too dim for us to see

  5. Re: Text consoles stay black

    On Tue, 06 Mar 2007 12:33:15 -0600, Dances With Crows wrote:

    > Build 8776 of the evil
    > nvidia modules works fine here, been using it ever since it was marked
    > stable in Gentoo.


    So it must be something specific to my machine. I'm going to experiment a
    bit.

    > If X is running, virtual consoles are sorta superfluous as you can
    > always start another xterm/konsole/eterm.


    No, they're not! When the X server gets unusable, for example because of a
    freezed fullscreen X app, the consoles are often the only way to get
    control of the system by killing the app from there. At least I have
    experienced this case often.

    > If you want something that's
    > faster than VESA framebuffer and more than 80x25, see what you can get
    > from vga=ask. HTH,


    Yes, I'm going to try that, thx! If all else fails, I might also
    settle for 'normal', as it's only for rescue purposes anyway.


  6. Re: Text consoles stay black

    ubi staggered into the Black Sun and said:
    > On Tue, 06 Mar 2007 12:33:15 -0600, Dances With Crows wrote:
    >> Build 8776 of the evil nvidia modules works fine here, been using it
    >> ever since it was marked stable in Gentoo.

    > So it must be something specific to my machine.


    Or the graphics card, or something in your X config.

    >> If X is running, virtual consoles are sorta superfluous as you can
    >> always start another xterm/konsole/eterm.

    > No, they're not! When the X server gets unusable, for example because
    > of a [frozen] fullscreen X app,


    ....then X is usually completely hosed, and unresponsive to keyboard
    events like Ctrl-Alt-F?. At least that's been my experience. Alt-SysRq
    might still work, but that one doesn't involve X.

    > the consoles are often the only way to get control of the system by
    > killing the app from there. At least I have experienced this case


    Strange. IME, when X has hosed itself in that way, the easiest way to
    regain control of the system without rebooting is to ssh in from another
    machine on the LAN and kill -9 X. That doesn't work 100% of the time,
    natch. If you're experiencing extreme X instability, it might be time
    to fiddle with xorg.conf or try a different version of the evil nVidia
    modules.

    >> If you want something that's faster than VESA framebuffer and more
    >> than 80x25, see what you can get from vga=ask. HTH,

    > Yes, I'm going to try that, thx! If all else fails, I might also
    > settle for 'normal', as it's only for rescue purposes anyway.


    ....back in the day, all we had was 80x24, black-and-white, and we liked
    it! Uphill in the snow, both ways, with only 64k of address space and
    8-bit registers!

    --
    He is a rhythmic movement of the penguins, is Tux.
    --MegaHAL, trained on random gibberish
    Matt G|There is no Darkness in Eternity/But only Light too dim for us to see

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