XFree86 Frequently Asked Questions - X

This is a discussion on XFree86 Frequently Asked Questions - X ; Archive-name: x-faq/xfree86 Posting-Frequency: monthly URL: http://www.XFree86.org/FAQ XFREE86 FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ---------------------------------- This document is intended to provide answers to the questions most often received by the XFree86[tm] Project's support team (which can be reached at XFree86@XFree86.org ). It is also ...

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  1. XFree86 Frequently Asked Questions

    Archive-name: x-faq/xfree86
    Posting-Frequency: monthly
    URL: http://www.XFree86.org/FAQ



    XFREE86 FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
    ----------------------------------

    This document is intended to provide answers to the questions most often
    received by the XFree86[tm] Project's support team (which can be reached
    at XFree86@XFree86.org). It is also a source of information more recent
    than the documentation included with the latest release.

    Generally, if the information is already available elsewhere, this
    document will supply a pointer to the information rather than duplicate
    it. If you don't have access to the World Wide Web, see the section
    below entitled "Access via Email".

    The XFree86 Project is making the information in this document available
    free of charge in the hope that it will be of use. However, the authors
    specifically disclaim any liability for any direct, indirect, or
    consequential damages arising out of its use.

    This document is intended to be a source of up-to-date info regarding
    XFree86, and as such, may change frequently. Make sure you consult a
    recent copy, before relying on any information contained herein.

    Additionally, this FAQ generally assumes that you are using the latest
    release and, unless otherwise specified, the information contained
    herein is likely to not be applicable to other releases. If you are
    having problems and are not running the latest release, then upgrading
    is often the answer to your problems. Really. If you have a fairly new
    card, it is especially important to make sure you are using the latest
    server release.

    The latest version of this document is always available from the XFree86
    Web site (http://www.XFree86.org/) or one of its mirrors:
    * http://www.au.xfree86.org/
    * http://www.uni-paderborn.de/mirrors/xfree86/
    * http://sunsite.mff.cuni.cz/XFree86/
    * http://xfree86.gw.com/
    * http://xfree86.mirror.aarnet.edu.au/
    * http://sunsite.doc.ic.ac.uk/XFree86/
    * http://www.noguska.net/linux/xfree86/
    * http://www.kr.xfree86.org/

    Last modified: Mon Nov 22 13:47:27 PST 1999
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    INDEX OF QUESTIONS:

    SECTION A - GENERAL INFORMATION
    * Q.A1- What is XFree86?
    * Q.A2- What is the current release of XFree86?
    * Q.A3- What is the current release of SuperProbe?
    * Q.A4- How do I find out what version I have?
    * Q.A5- Where do I get the latest releases?
    * Q.A6- What files do I need to upgrade to the latest release?
    * Q.A7- Where do I find the latest documentation?
    * Q.A8- Where can I get RPMs for the latest release?
    * Q.A9- When is the next release?
    * Q.A10- Which card do you recommend that I buy?
    * Q.A11- Which card is the fastest?
    * Q.A12- Has XFree86 been ported to OS/2?
    * Q.A13- How about a MS-DOS or MS-Windows port?
    * Q.A14- But I heard X supports Windows NT.
    * Q.A15- Can I use more than one video card in the same machine with
    XFree86?
    * Q.A16- Are Overlay Visuals available?
    * Q.A17- How do I report a bug in XFree86?
    * Q.A18- About this FAQ
    * Q.A19- Access via Email
    * Q.A20- Related Information

    SECTION B - CONFIGURATION QUESTIONS
    * Q.B1- Do you have the config file for ...?
    * Q.B2- I got an XF86Config file from ..., but things still don't
    work.
    * Q.B3- How do I configure the server?
    * Q.B4- How do I know which X server to use for my video card?
    * Q.B5- My PC is PC98 compliant. Should I use the XF98 servers?
    * Q.B6- My monitor isn't listed in the [ XF86Config | xf86setup ]
    monitor database.
    * Q.B7- What about "vgaset"?
    * Q.B8- My card isn't on the list shown in XF86Setup. Is there a more
    up-to-date list?
    * Q.B9- Why does the server reject my mode lines?
    * Q.B10- The preinst.sh script fails to run succesfully

    SECTION C - KEYBOARD & MOUSE PROBLEMS
    * Q.C1- The mouse cursor doesn't display in the right position
    * Q.C2- Why don't menus work properly?
    * Q.C3- How come, in Tk-based applications, the buttons highlight, but
    can't be depressed?
    * Q.C4- I've installed the latest release and now some of my keys no
    longer work. Why?
    * Q.C5- The mouse is moving erratically. What's wrong?
    * Q.C6- New Microsoft serial mouse protocol 2.1A mice don't work.
    * Q.C7- How can I swap mouse buttons? How do I get an XFree86 for
    Left-Handers?

    SECTION D - DISPLAY PROBLEMS
    * Q.D1- Part of the Displayed Image is Wrapping-around or is
    Duplicated on the Other Side of the Screen
    * Q.D2- My screen is too large. How can I disable the virtual desktop?
    * Q.D3- wrong colors or black and white images in 24bpp modes for
    Netscape, xanim, WABI and others
    * Q.D4- Why do I get a mostly black screen with my Diamond Speedstar
    A50 (SiS 6326)?

    SECTION E - MISCELLANEOUS PROBLEMS/QUESTIONS
    * Q.E1- How do I get the server to scale vector fonts, but not bitmap
    fonts?
    * Q.E2- What can I do to keep the server from hanging while scaling
    fonts?
    * Q.E3- The system locks up when I start the S3 server. What can I do?
    * Q.E4- I've got a Cirrus Logic GD546x based card and am experiencing
    system lockups. What can I do?
    * Q.E5- I get a "broken pipe" error while unpacking the ".tar.gz"
    files. Is something wrong with them?
    * Q.E6- Why does the server quit with the error "xf86OpenConsole:
    cannot open /dev/console" on Linux?
    * Q.E7- How do I get the server to display more than 256 colors?
    * Q.E8- Why do I get display problems with my ATI PC2TV card?
    * Q.E9- I've just installed XFree86 3.3.5 for Linux, but I get "No
    such file or directory" whenever I try to run something.
    * Q.E10- XFree86 crashes on Linux systems with GCC 2.8.x
    * Q.E11- Why does the X server exit with an error message about a
    SecurityPolicy file?
    * Q.E12- Is XFree86 Year2000 compliant?
    * Q.E13- I get an error "_X11TransSocketUNIXConnect: Can't connect:
    errno = 111". What does it mean?
    * Q.E14- What is Xwrapper and why can't startx or xinit find it?
    * Q.E15- Running XFree86 on portable computers, laptops and LCD
    screens
    * Q.E16- Can TrueType fonts be used with XFree86?
    * Q.E17- I'm using NetBSD-currnet and the `wscons' console code and my
    X screen sometimes jumps.
    * Q.E18- Slow or sluggish performance of XFree86 servers, jerky mouse
    movement.

    SECTION F - CHIPSET SUPPORT
    * Q.F1- My card is currently not supported - what can I do?
    * Q.F2- How do I find out the current status of a driver?
    * Q.F3- Unsupported Clock Chips
    * Q.F4- Do you have an alpha or beta server for my ... card?
    * Q.F5- Matrox chips
    * Q.F6- Alliance ProMotion chips
    * Q.F7- Cirrus CL-GD754x chips
    * Q.F8- Sierra Falcon chip
    * Q.F9- ISA-bus Mach64 cards
    * Q.F10- S3 911 and 924 Cards with 512KB RAM
    * Q.F11- Is there a server for 3Dlabs GLINT or Permedia based cards?
    * Q.F12- Is a server for Riva 128, 128zx or Riva TNT based cards
    available?
    * Q.F13- Is a server for Rendition chipsets available?
    * Q.F14- What about AGP?
    * Q.F15- Why don't you just make a VESA 2.0 driver so that all
    compliant cards will work?
    * Q.F16- Is a server for the Intel i740 chipset available?
    * Q.F17- Is a server for the Mpact 2 chipset available?
    * Q.F18- Is a server for the S3 Trio3D, Trio3D/2X or the S3 Savage3D
    or the Savage4 available?
    * Q.F19- S3 Trio3D/2X (86C362, 86C368) doesn't work or is awfully slow
    * Q.F20- Is a server for SiS 530 or SiS 620 based motherboards with
    integrated graphics available?
    * Q.F21- Is a server for the Trident Blade3D chipset available?
    * Q.F22- Is a server for the Voodoo Banshee or other 3Dfx chips
    available?
    * Q.F23- How do I get XFree86 to work with my new ATI card?
    * Q.F24- Is there any other way I can get an unsupported card to work?
    * Q.F25- Does XFree86 support the ATI Rage128?
    * Q.F26- Does XFree86 support the SiS 540/630 or the SiS 300?

    SECTION G - KNOWN PROBLEMS WITH XFREE86 3.3.5
    * Q.G1- The tar files for Linux-ix86-glibc2 are too big / contain
    additional stuff.
    * Q.G2- I get an undefined symbol __deregister_frame_info with the
    Linux-ix86-glibc2 binaries.
    * Q.G3- My Trident TGUI9680 card has problems with fonts
    * Q.G4- The "cyber_shadow" Option doesn't work on my Cyber 9382.
    * Q.G5- Problems displaying resolutions above 640x480 on some Matrox
    G100 cards.
    * Q.G6- My Trident laptop goes glowing-white when I start the server.
    * Q.G7- Display problems (streaking, shifted lines, tearing) at high
    color depth on Matrox G100 cards.
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    GENERAL INFORMATION


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.A1- What is XFree86?

    XFree86 is a trademark of The XFree86 Project, Inc., a non-profit
    organization that provides X Window System servers (as well as some
    supporting materials) for several operating systems on PCs and other
    microcomputers. The X servers, client programs, documentation, etc.
    supplied by the XFree86 Project, Inc., are collectively, also known as
    XFree86. All programs are provided with source code, free of charge.

    The XFree86 Project, Inc. is currently funded entirely by donations. If
    you're interested in making a monetary or equipment donation, see
    http://www.XFree86.org/donations.html or send Email to BOD@XFree86.org.

    A list of current sponsors is available at
    http://www.XFree86.org/sponsors.html

    For more information regarding The XFree86 Project, Inc., see
    http://www.XFree86.org/corp_profile.html


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.A2- What is the current release of XFree86?

    The latest full release is XFree86 version 3.3.5. It is based on
    X11R6.3pl2 and was released in August 1999. See the Release Notes for
    more info.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.A3- What is the current release of SuperProbe?

    The newest available version of SuperProbe is 2.20. It is included with
    the latest XFree86 release.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.A4- How do I find out what version I have?

    Both SuperProbe and the servers print the version when they start.
    However, depending on how the server is started, its output may not
    normally be visible.

    The server will display its version number, if you simply type "X
    -showconfig" at a shell prompt (even if you haven't configured it for
    your card and monitor yet).


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.A5- Where do I get the latest releases?

    The primary site for both SuperProbe and the XFree86 servers and clients
    is ftp.XFree86.org.

    A list of mirror sites is available at:
    http://www.XFree86.org/3.3.5/ftp.html


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.A6- What files do I need to upgrade to the latest release?

    Please read the README (or RELNOTES) file, in the directory
    corresponding to your OS, on the XFree86 ftp site or one of its mirrors
    (see the previous question). It contains a list of the filenames along
    with their contents. It also lists which files are required and which
    are optional.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.A7- Where do I find the latest documentation?

    The latest documentation can be found on http://www.XFree86.org/3.3.5/.
    Many of the XFree86 specific man pages are also available at
    http://www.XFree86.org/man/. The documentation is also available, in
    ASCII form, from ftp://ftp.XFree86.org/pub/XFree86/3.3.5/doc/.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.A8- Where can I get RPMs for the latest release?

    If you need XFree86 binaries in RPM format (or any other vendor-specific
    package format) you will need to contact your OS vendor. The XFree86
    Project only supplies binaries in the vendor-independent ".tgz" (gzipped
    tar) format (and ".zip" for OS/2).


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.A9- When is the next release?

    The 4.0 release, with significant changes, is being worked on. It is not
    known at this point when it will be released. Work-in-progress snapshots
    of this release are being made available from
    http://www.XFree86.org/snapshots/

    XFree86-3.3.6 is planned for the fourth quarter 1999.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.A10- Which card do you recommend that I buy?

    We don't recommend any particular board or manufacturer (although it
    would be good to support our sponsors, see
    http://www.XFree86.org/sponsors.html). In general, the S3 based boards
    have been the best supported, followed by the ATI based cards, however
    that is no guarantee that any specific board will work. It is probably
    best to look through the various "README" files at
    http://www.XFree86.org/3.3.5/ to see which boards are currently
    supported and pick one of them.

    It is also a good idea to buy from some place that has a liberal return
    policy or will let you try before you buy. Especially since some
    manufacturers will sometimes change what RAMDAC or other chips are used
    on a board _without changing the name of the board_.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.A11- Which card is the fastest?

    We don't know. Benchmarks are just that. Useless numbers trying to
    capture something that is far too complex to be captured in a number. We
    may occasionally comment on the relative speed of different cards, but
    that is usually the personal opinion of the one who writes the note. In
    general, The XFree86 Project is not publishing benchmark comparisons,
    because even if you think that a number like 'xstones' can capture the
    performance of a card, it is incredibly hard to create fair and
    comparable numbers.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.A12- Has XFree86 been ported to OS/2?

    Yes, the latest release is available for OS/2. This port runs in
    parallel to the Presentation Manager desktop, similarly to a WinOS/2
    fullscreen session (there is no equivalent to a seamless WinOS/2
    configuration). See http://borneo.gmd.de/~veit/os2/xf86os2.html for more
    information.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.A13- How about a MS-DOS or MS-Windows port?

    There is some work being done to create a free port of XFree86 to
    Microsoft Windows. However, in the mean time, if you need to run X on
    such a platform you'll need to use one of the available commercial
    servers.

    One of the commercial products, X Appeal, is from an XFree86 sponsor and
    is a port of the XFree86 servers to MS-DOS. They also have a freely
    available demo version.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.A14- But I heard X supports Windows NT.

    X11R6.3 does include some support for MicroSoft Windows NT. However, it
    is only for building the libraries and some client programs. If you want
    an X server, for now, you'll have to buy one. See the previous question.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.A15- Can I use more than one video card in the same machine with
    XFree86?

    Although it is technically possible to use multiple PCI-based SVGA cards
    in the same machine, none of the servers currently support this.

    The VGA16 and Mono servers are both capable of running both a VGA
    compatible card and a non-VGA compatible monochrome card in the same
    machine.

    For XFree86-4.0 we are working on true multi head support.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.A16- Are Overlay Visuals available?

    Some X servers offer multiple visuals as overlays (e.g., 8bpp
    PseudoColor and 24bpp TrueColor). At this point XFree86 doesn't support
    Overlays, but we are working on this feature for XFree86-4.0.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.A17- How do I report a bug in XFree86?

    Use the bug report form on our WWW server (http://www.XFree86.org/), or
    send email to XFree86@XFree86.org. Before sending a bug report, make
    sure you are using the current release of XFree86. *In the bug report,
    include the full server output, details of the XFree86 version, server,
    description of the problem, and some way of repeating it and most
    importantly, the _full_ server startup output.* Oh, and you'll greatly
    increase your chances of getting a useful response from us, if you
    include the full output of the server.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.A18- About this FAQ

    In addition to being available from the XFree86 web site (as
    http://www.XFree86.org/FAQ/), this FAQ will be posted at least monthly
    to comp.windows.x.i386unix, comp.os.linux.x, comp.answers, and
    news.answers.

    It is also available from the XFree86 FTP site (and mirrors) as
    ftp://ftp.XFree86.org/pub/XFree86/WW...FAQ/index.html - HTML
    version and ftp://ftp.XFree86.org/pub/XFree86/WW...cs/FAQ/faq.txt -
    ASCII text version.

    This document is maintained by Joe Moss (joe@XFree86.Org) with
    contributions from other members of the XFree86 support and development
    teams. Particular thanks go to David Dawes, Dirk Hohndel, and Koen
    Gadeyne for their contributions.

    If you have questions or comments regarding XFree86 do _not_ send them
    directly to me. They should be Emailed to XFree86@XFree86.org (which
    will cause a copy to be sent to me, as well as the rest of the XFree86
    volunteer support team). If you have comments regarding this document
    itself, then you may send them to me. In particular, if you find
    incorrect or non-functional URLs or any typos herein, please let me
    know.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.A19- Access via Email

    If you only have Email access to the net, you should get a copy of the
    "Accessing the Internet by E-Mail FAQ".

    If you're in North or South America, send a message to
    mail-server@rtfm.mit.edu containing only the line:

    send usenet/news.answers/internet-services/access-via-email

    in the body of the message.
    Elsewhere in the world, send mail to mailbase@mailbase.ac.uk with only
    this line in the message body:

    send lis-iis e-access-inet.txt

    This document explains how to retrieve stuff from the WWW, Usenet News,
    etc. via Email. It also explains how to use ftpmail, which you can use
    to get the latest version of XFree86.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.A20- Related Information

    Many of our sponsors supply hardware, software, and services which may
    be of interest to users of XFree86 servers. The list of our sponsors
    (http:/www.XFree86.org/sponsors.html), points to the web sites of many
    of them.

    Here are some pointers to other documentation, regarding subjects
    related to XFree86, that might be useful to readers of this document.
    These are not published by the XFree86 Project, Inc. and are included
    here only for reference. Questions or comments regarding any of these
    items should be directed to their respective authors.
    * X.Org Home Page (http://www.x.org/)
    * X11 Applications FAQ
    (http://www.ee.ryerson.ca:8080/~elf/xapps/faq.html)
    * Other X Window System FAQs
    (http://www.lib.ox.ac.uk/internet/new...ory.x-faq.html)
    * X Window System and OSF/Motif WWW Sites
    (http://www.rahul.net/kenton/xsites.framed.html)
    * [Linux] XFree86 HOWTO
    (http://sunsite.unc.edu/mdw/HOWTO/XFree86-HOWTO.html)
    * Connecting X-Terminals to Linux Systems
    (http://sunsite.unc.edu/mdw/HOWTO/mini/Xterminal)
    * The 3 Button Mouse Page [getting third button to work]
    (http://kipper.york.ac.uk/mouse.html)
    * Mini-HOWTO About Running XFree86 on Notebooks [mostly WD specific]
    (http://sunsite.unc.edu/mdw/HOWTO/mini/X-Notebook)
    * How to Setup/Use Low-Bandwidth X
    (ftp://ftp.wellfleet.com/netman/psmith/faqs/LBX-HOWTO)
    * Setting up X Authentication [Tk specific, but the concepts are
    generally applicable] (http://cr-toolkit.crd.ge.com/tkxauth/)
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    CONFIGURATION QUESTIONS


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.B1- Do you have the config file for ...?

    There is a no such thing as *THE* config file for a particular card or
    monitor. The "XF86Config" file you should use is dependent on your card,
    monitor, operating system, mouse, keyboard, individual preferences,
    network setup, available fonts, etc.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.B2- I got an XF86Config file from ..., but things still don't
    work.

    It is *not* a good idea to exchange XF86Config files. While it may be
    safe to use certain parts of another's config file, in general, you are
    better off generating your own.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.B3- How do I configure the server?

    All of the configuration information we have, is included with the
    release. You should use one of the included configuration programs,
    _XF86Setup_ or _xf86config_. This is explained in the QuickStart Guide.

    For further information, you could also read the XFree86 configuration
    guide (available from http://www.XFree86.org/3.3.5/Config.html), and the
    manual pages XF86Config(4/5) and xvidtune(1).


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.B4- How do I know which X server to use for my video card?

    A list of video cards and the X servers they require can be found at
    http://www.xfree86.org/cardlist.html. If you don't find an entry for
    your card or chipset in that list, check the Chipset Support section
    below to see if it is mentioned there.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.B5- My PC is PC98 compliant. Should I use the XF98 servers? No.
    The "XF98" servers and related utilities will _only_ work
    with the Japanese PC98 architecture computers. This is a
    Japanese computer standard that predates the Intel/Microsoft
    PC98 specification, and the two are completely unrelated.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.B6- My monitor isn't listed in the [ XF86Config | xf86setup ]
    monitor database.

    Try looking for information on your monitor's capabilities on one of the
    following Internet sites:
    * http://hawks.ha.md.us/hardware/monitor.html
    * http://www.cviog.uga.edu/Misc/monitors/o-z.html
    * http://www.cviog.uga.edu/Misc/monitors/a-n.html
    * http://www.monitorservice.com/
    * http://www.mela-itg.com/
    * http://www.restorstone.com/MonitorMa...rchManINT.html
    * http://www.nashville.net/~griffin/mondata.html


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.B7- What about "vgaset"?

    Simple. Don't use it!

    The "xvidtune" program, that is part of the 3.3.5 release, has more
    capabilities and works properly with the server extension
    ("XFree86-VidModeExtension") included in the 3.3.5 servers.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.B8- My card isn't on the list shown in XF86Setup. Is there a
    more up-to-date list?

    Each release includes the most up-to-date list at the time of release.
    If there are any updates after a release, they will be made available
    as: ftp://ftp.XFree86.org/pub/XFree86/current/doc/Cards (if the file is
    non-existent, i.e. this URL does not work, then there have not been any
    updates to the Cards database since the last release). It should be
    installed in "/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/Cards".

    If you still can't find your card listed, you should check if there is a
    generic entry for cards using the same chipset as yours. If not, see the
    Chipset Support section of this document to check on the current status
    of drivers being written and what you can do if your card is
    unsupported.

    If after all of the above, you still are not sure what to do about
    configuring your card, you can contact us about it.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.B9- Why does the server reject my mode lines?

    This usually is due to incorrect parameters in the Monitor section of
    the XF86Config file.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.B10- The preinst.sh script fails to run succesfully

    If you install XFree86 using the description in the RELNOTES file, you
    may see an error message from preinst.sh like this:

    : command not found

    or

    var/tnp/preinst.sh systax error near unexpected token 'in

    or a number of other strange errors.

    In all cases, these could be traced back to downloading this file using
    a MSWindows-based download program (MS Internet Explorer or any other
    Windows FTP client).

    These programs try to convert this script file to MSDOS text, which
    breaks it completely. In most FTP clients you can force the program to
    download in "image" or "binary" mode, which would solve this. Some
    internet browsers don't allow this, so they can't be used for this.

    The best solution is to use a UNIX Internet browser or FTP client: they
    do the right thing.
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    KEYBOARD & MOUSE PROBLEMS


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.C1- The mouse cursor doesn't display in the right position

    If the cursor appears to be horizontally offset by several pixels, it is
    probably due to the same problems that cause the display to be wrapped
    around. See item D1 below.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.C2- Why don't menus work properly?

    If you are experiencing problems with menus not allowing you to select
    items, try turning NumLock off.

    In X11R6 (and newer), the NumLock key is a modifier. Many clients (X
    programs) haven't yet been updated to the R6 way of doing things. They
    need to ignore modifiers when looking for button click/release events.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.C3- How come, in Tk-based applications, the buttons highlight,
    but can't be depressed?

    See the answer to the previous question. You can also upgrade to Tk 4.x
    which ignores modifiers by default.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.C4- I've installed the latest release and now some of my keys no
    longer work. Why?

    The 3.3.5 release is based on X11R6.3 which includes the XKB extension
    and has it enabled by default. This may cause the mappings of some keys
    on some keyboards to be different than they were in previous releases.

    See the XF86Config man page and the sample XF86Config file for some
    information on setting the key mappings to your liking.

    Alternatively, you can disable the XKB extensions by starting the server
    with the "-kb" option or by adding the keyword "XkbDisable" to your
    XF86Config file.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.C5- The mouse is moving erratically. What's wrong?

    Most likely, you've specified the wrong protocol for the mouse. Note
    that newer Logitech mice do not use the "Logitech" protocol, but instead
    use "Microsoft" (or "MouseMan") protocol.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.C6- New Microsoft serial mouse protocol 2.1A mice don't work.

    This should not be a problem with XFree86 3.3.2 and later.

    For earlier versions running under Linux, the solution is to get
    gpm-1.13 (or later), run it as "gpm -t pnp -R", and configure XFree86
    for "MouseSystems" Protocol with "/dev/gpmdata" as the device.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.C7- How can I swap mouse buttons? How do I get an XFree86 for
    Left-Handers?

    Run "xmodmap -e "pointer = 3 2 1"" in an xterm or put such a command
    into your ".xinitrc" file.
    See also the xmodmap(1) man page.
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    DISPLAY PROBLEMS


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.D1- Part of the Displayed Image is Wrapping-around or is
    Duplicated on the Other Side of the Screen

    For Diamond Stealth Video VRAM: if the server is not recognizing your
    card as a Diamond card, add this line to your "XF86Config":

    Option "Diamond"

    If the above does not work or you don't have a Diamond card, try running
    the xvidtune program and adjusting various settings. In particular, if
    you have a recent S3 based card, adjust the extra S3-specific settings
    at the bottom.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.D2- My screen is too large. How can I disable the virtual
    desktop?

    Two things influence the virtual desktop size:
    * In the Screen Section of your XF86Config file (normally near the end
    of that file), you may see a "Virtual" keyword for every screen
    depth in that section. Comment that line (prepend a "#") or remove
    it. In the example below, the virtual size was 1280x1024, while the
    largest mode is 1024x768, so even in that largest mode, you would
    need to scroll around the display.

    Section "Screen"

    ...

    Subsection "Display"

    Depth 8

    Modes "1024x768" "800x600" "640x480"

    # Virtual 1280 1024

    ViewPort 0 0

    EndSubsection

    ...
    * If not given in a "Virtual" line in the XF86Config file, XFree86
    will automatically select the largest-resolution mode as your
    virtual screen size. E.g.:

    Section "Screen"

    ...

    Subsection "Display"

    Depth 8

    Modes "1024x768" "800x600" "640x480"

    ViewPort 0 0

    EndSubsection

    ...

    This will set the virtual screen to 1024x768 in 8bpp mode. If you only
    want 800x600, remove the "1024x768" Mode from the list above.

    In some installations, the first mode in the "Modes" line is the
    smallest one, as shown below:

    ...

    Modes "640x480" "800x600" "1024x768"

    ...

    In this case, the server will _still_ select 1024x768 as virtual size
    (the largest mode in the list), but start up with 640x480 (the first
    mode in the list). This will put you in a "scrolling" mode again. If you
    want 640x480 without scrolling, remove all the larger modes. If you want
    the bigger display without the scrolling, use "CTRL ALT +" or "CTRL ALT
    -" to switch to the larger modes, or re-order the "Modes" line so that
    the server starts up in the mode you want.

    Note that there is such a "Display" Subsection for every color depth, so
    you may have to repeat the same editing steps several times.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.D3- wrong colors or black and white images in 24bpp modes for
    Netscape, xanim, WABI and others

    This is a long-standing problem with all those client programs. It is
    NOT a problem in XFree86.

    Technical details: it is caused by a relatively new feature of XFree86
    (24bpp modes with 24bpp pixmaps) that is very poorly understood by many
    client authors: they assume 32bpp pixmaps instead of asking the XFree86
    server for those details. Others (like Netscape) do ask for the pixmap
    size, but since they don't support 24bpp pixmaps, they fall back to
    using 1bpp (monochrome) pixmaps...

    The current public versions of XFree86 can only support a 1:1 mapping
    between the framebuffer depth and the pixmap depth. Some commercial
    Xservers support 32bpp pixmaps in 24bpp modes, and hence they present an
    interface to client programs that happens to match their assumptions.
    XFree86 4.0 will also support this feature.

    There are two possible solutions to this right now:
    * do not use 24bpp modes, but rather 16bpp or 32 bpp modes. 32bpp is
    best, but it requires more video memory than 24bpp.
    * don't use broken X clients. There are patches for Netscape and even
    compiled binaries on the net that fix this bug.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.D4- Why do I get a mostly black screen with my Diamond Speedstar
    A50 (SiS 6326)?

    If you have a card with 8MB of video memory, first try telling the X
    server that there is only 4MB present by adding the following line to
    the Device section of your config file:

    Videoram 4096

    If you have a 4MB card, or if the above line doesn't help, try adding
    the following line to the Device section:

    Option "nolinear"

    A drawback with this option is that colour depths higher than 8bpp can't
    be used, but that is better than nothing.
    If you see problems when moving windows with KDE, try the following:

    Option "no_pixmap_cache"

    These problems should be fixed in the next release.
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    MISCELLANEOUS PROBLEMS/QUESTIONS


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.E1- How do I get the server to scale vector fonts, but not
    bitmap fonts?

    In standard X11R6 (and later), in addition to the fonts in "scalable"
    formats (i.e. Type1, Speedo), bitmap fonts are scaled. This can have the
    undesirable effect of scaling a bitmap font, even though a Type1 font is
    available (if the bitmap font is listed first in the path).

    With the 3.2 and later releases of XFree86, you can add the text
    ":unscaled" to the end of any directory in the font path to turn off
    scaling of the bitmap fonts in that directory. This works in both the
    XF86Config file and the font server's config file.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.E2- What can I do to keep the server from hanging while scaling
    fonts?

    While scaling fonts, the server can hang temporarily. If you are
    requesting a particularly large font, the period during which the server
    is unresponsive, can be quite noticeable. Font scaling uses floating
    point math and the effect is particularly obvious, if you do not have a
    floating point coprocessor (getting one would help immensely).

    This problem can be avoided by running the font server (xfs) and
    indicating in your XF86Config file that the X server should request
    fonts from the font server. This workaround prevents the X server from
    temporarily freezing, but doesn't really speed up the time necessary to
    scale the fonts (so the application requesting the font will still have
    to wait).


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.E3- The system locks up when I start the S3 server. What can I
    do?

    This is most often caused by problems with directly accessing the linear
    frame-buffer (this often happens with IBM ValuePoint systems, in
    particular). Try adding "Option "nolinear"" to the Device section of
    your XF86Config. If it still occurs, try "Option "nomemaccess"".

    Lockups can also happen, with any server, if the system bus is
    overclocked. Try some more conservative BIOS settings.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.E4- I've got a Cirrus Logic GD546x based card and am
    experiencing system lockups. What can I do?

    Try adding

    Option "xaa_no_color_exp"

    to your XF86Config file (in the Device section).

    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.E5- I get a "broken pipe" error while unpacking the ".tar.gz"
    files. Is something wrong with them?

    No, this message is only a warning and can safely be ignored - assuming
    it is the only error message.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.E6- Why does the server quit with the error "xf86OpenConsole:
    cannot open /dev/console" on Linux?

    There is a problem with the /dev/console device file. As root, you can
    run these commands to fix it:

    cd /dev; ./MAKEDEV console


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.E7- How do I get the server to display more than 256 colors?

    As explained in the XFree86(1) man page, the "-bpp" option can be
    specified on the command line when starting the server. You can specify
    15 bpp, for 32768 colors, 16 bpp, for 65536 colors, or either 24 or 32
    bpp, for 16.7 million colors.

    However, the server is rarely started directly. The two most common ways
    to start the server are with "startx" and "xdm". For example, to start
    the server in 16 bpp mode from the command line:

    startx -- -bpp 16

    or to start the server from xdm in 32bpp mode, you would put a line like
    the following in the _Xservers_ file (in the xdm library directory,
    typically /usr/X11R6/lib/X11/xdm):

    :0 local /usr/X11R6/bin/X -bpp 32

    All of the above is dependent on the server having support for your card
    at higher than 8 bpp.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.E8- Why do I get display problems with my ATI PC2TV card?

    Make sure you don't have a TV cable connected to your card. The Mach64
    server doesn't work properly when that cable is connected.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.E9- I've just installed XFree86 3.3.5 for Linux, but I get "No
    such file or directory" whenever I try to run something.

    The most common reason for this is that you have installed the
    Linux-ix86-glibc binaries when you don't have GNU libc 2 (aka libc 6).
    The solution is to install the Linux-ix86 binaries, which are the
    correct ones for most situations.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.E10- XFree86 crashes on Linux systems with GCC 2.8.x If your
    Linux kernel version is below than 2.1.79 (this includes
    ALL 2.0.xx kernels), and is compiled with the new GCC
    2.8.x, XFree86 will always crash and dump a core file. This
    is NOT a problem with XFree86, but rather with the Linux
    kernel. The problem is in the Linux kernel file
    /usr/src/linux/arch/i386/kernel/ioport.c. This file is not
    compiled correctly with GCC 2.8.0. There are a number
    possible solutions:
    * compile the entire Linux kernel with an older GCC.
    * compile it with 2.8.0, but use an ioport.o file compiled with an
    older GCC.
    * replace ioport.c with the ioport.c file from linux kernel 2.1.79 or
    later (this works for the 2.0.xx series kernels as well) and rebuild
    your kernel. There have been reports that the same problem occurs
    with some versions of egcs as well.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.E11- Why does the X server exit with an error message about a
    SecurityPolicy file?

    If your installation of XFree86 3.3/3.3.3 is not complete you may see
    the following error message when starting an X server:

    error opening security policy file /usr/X11R6/lib/X11/xserver/SecurityPolicy

    This is a only a warning message, and is mostly harmless. If your server
    is failing to startup, this is not the reason. Check the other messages.
    The file being referred to is included in the Xlib.tgz part of the
    XFree86 binary distributions produced by The XFree86 Project.

    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.E12- Is XFree86 Year2000 compliant?

    The X window system is not subject to year2000 problems. Neither is
    XFree86. See the y2k statement from The Open Group for reference.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.E13- I get an error "_X11TransSocketUNIXConnect: Can't connect:
    errno = 111". What does it mean?

    Whenever the XFree86 Xserver crashes, dies, ceases to exist or is
    inaccessible for any reason, you will see this error message. It is a
    message from an X-client (=any program running on your XFree86 Xserver,
    for example the window manager) telling you that it tried to connect to
    your Xserver, but failed to do something for "some" reason.

    Quoting only this message in a bug report is therefore utterly useless.
    Look in the server output for the real reason why the server died.
    Normally you should see the real error message (=why the server stopped
    working) a few lines before the "error 111" message.

    If you still can't make head or tails of all those messages, make sure
    to quote the *FULL* server output in your bug report. It is impossible
    to provide you with any help, if you just mention the "error 111", as so
    many people do.

    Obtaining the full server output is normally accomplished by redirecting
    both standard output and standard error to a file while starting the
    server (eg, startx <& logfile.txt). On some systems this is done by
    default.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.E14- What is Xwrapper and why can't startx or xinit find it?

    The XFree86 X servers require root privileges to access the video
    hardware. In releases prior to 3.3.2 the X servers were installed
    set-uid root so that normal users could run them with the required
    privileges. This is a potential security problem, especially given how
    large and complex the X servers are. One class of such security problems
    is exploiting the set-uid program with carefully crafted user-supplied
    data (either on the command line or in the environment). Starting with
    the 3.3.2 release the XFree86 X servers are installed without the
    set-uid bit set, and a small wrapper program ``Xwrapper'' which is
    installed set-uid root is used to start the X server after checking the
    command line and environment. This does not provide a 100% guarantee
    that the X servers are not vulnerable to such exploits, but it does
    reduce the chances of such exploits succeeding. Also, if vulnerabilities
    are found in the future that the current Xwrapper doesn't catch, we can
    easily supply an updated version. It is much easier to do that than to
    provide updated versions of all the X server binaries.

    The xinit command (which startx runs) provided with XFree86 3.3.2 and
    later has been modified to look for an X server called ``Xwrapper''
    instead of ``X''. If you don't have Xwrapper installed, you will get an
    error message from xinit/startx when it tries to start the non-set-uid X
    server without using the wrapper. The same thing will happen if you do
    have Xwrapper installed but you have an xserverrc file (usually
    $HOME/.xserverrc, but it can be any file pointed to by your XSERVERRC
    environment variable) that references ``X'' instead of ``Xwrapper''. To
    fix that, edit your xserverrc file and replace ``X'' with ``Xwrapper''.
    If instead of X you have some other X server name (eg, XF86_SVGA) in
    your xserverrc file, you will need to create a symbolic link from it to
    /usr/X11R6/bin/X and replace it with ``Xwrapper'' in your xserverrc
    file.

    We strongly recommend against making the X servers set-uid root because
    of the potential security implications of doing so. We also recommend
    running xdm at boot time to handle starting the X server on a multi user
    system.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.E15- Running XFree86 on portable computers, laptops and LCD
    screens

    Computers using LC displays are more tricky to set up in XFree86 than
    the ones with a normal (CRT) monitor. This is mainly due to the displays
    themselves: LCDs basically have a fixed resolution, although some have
    extra hardware built in that can cope with several different
    resolutions.

    Especially the modelines can be extremely tricky, and each new LCD seems
    to need its own modeline. Refer to the Linux-laptop homepage for more
    information and specific help for most common LCD-based computers:

    http://www.cs.utexas.edu/users/kharker/linux-laptop

    or one of the mirror sites, e.g.

    http://physics.open.ac.uk/~rpblake/linux_laptop

    Although this page is Linux-oriented, the information on using XFree86
    (especially the XF86Config files) is mostly OS-independent.


    ------------------

    From: XFree86 FAQ
    Subject: Q.E16- Can TrueType fonts be used with XFree86?

    While XFree86 does not, at the time of writing, natively support
    TrueType fonts, there is a number of third party solutions. Some
    information about these options is included below. The XFree86 project
    is not responsible for any of these; please send any inquiries about
    them to relevant newsgroups or, eventually, to their authors.

    XFree86 is planning to include native support for TrueType fonts in its
    next major release.

    CONVERSION TO BITMAPS

    The FreeType library includes in it's `contrib' directory the `ttf2bdf'
    utility, by Mark Leisher, which can be used to generate bitmap versions
    of TrueType fonts at any size, resolution, and with any encoding. The
    generated bitmaps can be used by any X server that supports the BDF
    format (including XFree86), or converted to PCF.

    The FreeType library is available from http://www.freetype.org.

    XFSFT

    Xfsft, by Mark Leisher and Juliusz Chroboczek, is a font backend based
    on the FreeType library (see above). Xfsft can be used as a standalone
    font server, or linked into the X server. Xfsft will automatically
    reencode fonts to a number of encodings, and new encodings can be
    provided by the user.

    At the time of writing, Xfsft does not delay rasterisation; this makes
    it unsuitable for fonts with a very large number of glyphs (such as
    fonts for ideographic scripts).

    More information of Xfsft can be found on
    http://www.dcs.ed.ac.uk/home/jec/programs/xfsft/.

    Xfsft (sources, binaries for Linux/Intel/libc5 and Solaris 2.6/Sparc)
    can be found on Sunsite at UNC
    ftp://sunsite.unc.edu/pub/Linux/X11/fonts/.

    Additionally, you may want to check the additional Linux/Intel/libc6
    binaries (including binaries of X servers) provided by Joerg Pomnitz, as
    well as his supporting utilities (which includes a tool that creates
    fonts.dir files for directories containing TrueType fonts):

    http://www.darmstadt.gmd.de/~pommnitz/

    and

    http://www.darmstadt.gmd.de/~pommnit...sft/index.html,

    and the FreeBSD/Intel binaries provided by Stephen Montgomery-Smith:

    http://math.missouri.edu/~stephen/software/.

    When downloading, please note that you will need the source tarball,
    which contains installation and usage instructions.

    X-TRUETYPE

    X-TrueType, by T. Shiozaki _et al_., is another backend based on
    FreeType. It can be run as a standalone font server or linked into the X
    server. It is, at the time of writing, the only backend that provides
    delayed rasterisation of glyphs; this makes it particularly suitable for
    use with ideographic scripts. It will reencode fonts to a fixed, albeit
    large, set of encodings (new encodings cannot easily be added by the
    user).

    More information on X-TrueType may be found on:
    http://hawk.ise.chuo-u.ac.jp/student...index-eng.html

  2. Re: XFree86 Frequently Asked Questions

    Joe Moss wrote:

    > This document is intended to provide answers to the questions most often
    > received by the XFree86[tm] Project's support team (which can be reached
    > at XFree86@XFree86.org). It is also a source of information more recent
    > than the documentation included with the latest release.



    I strongly doubt it...



    > Last modified: Mon Nov 22 13:47:27 PST 1999


    > Subject: Q.A2- What is the current release of XFree86?
    >
    > The latest full release is XFree86 version 3.3.5. It is based on
    > X11R6.3pl2 and was released in August 1999.


    > Subject: Q.A9- When is the next release?
    >
    > The 4.0 release, with significant changes, is being worked on. It is not
    > known at this point when it will be released.


    > XFree86-3.3.6 is planned for the fourth quarter 1999.


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