ATI Mobility Radeon 9600 Linux drivers

I want to buy a new notebook, and because I already have a nVidia card in my desktop computer, I want to buy one with an ATI card in it so I can better test compatibility of my OpenGL applications.

On the ATI homepage it says that I have to get mobility drivers from my notebook manufacturer, but I can’t get them there because it doesn’t support linux…

Can I use the desktop version of the R9700 drivers for my Mobility R9600? If not, where can I get working OpenGL drivers for linux?

I don’t want to buy a graphics card that will not work on linux.

For laptops - I would go with nvidia. I had a Dell Inspiron with the Radeon Mobility. I bought the xig drivers Performance was good, but I had X lockups periodically. Plus I do not think they support ARB_VERTEX_PROGRAM and alot of other extensions. You might also be able to use the bare bones open source drivers from DRI.

I recently upgraded to a later dell inspiron with the latest nvidia Geforce GO. Their drivers are outstanding and the chip performs very good. Most all extensions work (except Arb_Fragment_Program which needs a GeForceFX anyway.)

If I were you running linux on a laptop I would go with nvidia. Get a new ATI desktop board if you want to check compatibility.

Good Luck

Does the GeForceFX Go support ARB_Fragment_Program?

And do the Detonator drivers support Go-Boards? On the nVidia site they say I need to get the drivers from my notebook manufacturer…

[This message has been edited by Overmind (edited 08-16-2003).]

The nvidia drivers definitely support the Go chips - I have used them. Their drivers are closed source - I believe VA helped them build them. As far as ARB_Fragment_Program, I am not sure about the GeforceFX Go, it might - but I have the Geforce4 Go 4200 and it doesn’t support it.

Well, but the mobility radeon 9600 is faster than any NV mobile card.

I just got an IBM Thinkpad T40 with an ATI Radeon 7500 32Meg. The drivers that come with DRI run fine for desktop use but when I open up Quake III or Enemey Territory it runs a hell of alot slower then my desktop nvidia geforce II mx 32meg. I have tryed the xig drivers(the demo version) I couldnt get them to work and had a pretty bad experience with them. I would go nvidia. I am thinking of getting a nvidia fx 5900 ultra for my desktop, Ive done alot of research and that is the best card. Im pretty sure alienware has a nvidia fx 5900 go.

Of course, if you are really hard-core, you could always join the dri project and help remedy this situation by building quality open-source ATI drivers. I joined the mailing list and have seen both Linus and Alan Cox contribute. It would be a great oppurtunity for someone.

I pondered doing this myself and decided I didn’t quite have the bandwidth or skillset to do it. But I really hope someday the open-source drivers are there. Right now I have heard they work pretty good on alot of ATI cards, but not all extensions are supported. Definitely not ARB_Vertex_Program or ARB_Fragment_Program…


I should point out that the Radeon 7500 is pretty old, so being slower than the Geforce-2 shouldn’t be that much of a surprise. The Radeon 9600 Mobility should perform a whole lot better using the ATI fglrx drivers.

I will say, however, that my (desktop) 9700 Pro doesn’t perform in Linux like it does in Windows. This probably has a lot to do with the fglrx drivers being based on FireGL rather than Catalyst. However, the drivers do seem to be stable and function correctly.

Pity that Linux is still seen as a workstation platform far more than for gaming, especially as these stereotypes just keep reinforcing themselves.

This topic was automatically closed 183 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.