LinuxInThreeDimensions: Unichrome and Ubuntu 6.10 Edgy Edge. A much needed howto.

Well, almost.

It’s taken lots of fiddling, compiling, googling and counter-googling, but finally, it works.

My laptop is now running OpenGL with 3D acceleration and Direct Rendering and lots of pretty shiny stuff, just as the good lor’ intended. All under Ubuntu 6.10 Edgy Edge. So I’m happier still.

If this laptop had a decent graphical card (nVidia is particularly well supported) this wouldn’t have been much of a challenge at all. The problem is that it’s a no-name generic VIA Unichrome IGP integrated graphics card running the VM800 chipset. That probably means nothing to you, but googlers for this information will be mighty thankful :)

I followed the Ubuntu OpenChrome guide to the letter, then hit this problem during autogen.sh:

checking for XORG… configure: error: Package requirements (xorg-server xproto xvmc fontsproto libdrm ) were not met:
No package ‘xorg-server’ found
No package ‘xproto’ found
No package ‘xvmc’ found
No package ‘fontsproto’ found
No package ‘libdrm’ found
Consider adjusting the PKG_CONFIG_PATH environment variable if you
installed software in a non-standard prefix.
Alternatively, you may set the environment variables XORG_CFLAGS
and XORG_LIBS to avoid the need to call pkg-config.
See the pkg-config man page for more details.

So, it appears, did lots of other people according to google, but few had the magic incantation to solve this particular conundrum. Here it is!:

sudo apt-get install build-essential libxinerama-dev x11proto-xinerama-dev libxvmc-dev sysutils tofrodos

That snarfs the files autoconf.sh is complaining about. From there, follow the guide to install the unichrome drivers. Modify xorg.conf, and restart X.

I did that and everything worked fine, except the 3D acceleration. glxinfo insisted that

direct rendering: No

It clearly knew better than me, so who was I to argue?

After much more fiddling, I removed all the unneeded xserver video drivers (pretty much all except vesa, vmware and dummy) then re-installed libgl1-mesa-dri and libgl1-mesa-glx. One X restart later, glxinfo proclaimed

direct rendering: Yes

Woohoo!!!!

I’ve uploaded my xorg.conf file here in case anyone else has the same problems, and would like a pointer in the right direction.

Good luck!

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