FreeBSD 5.2.1 and XFree86-4.x ati driver lockup problem -- Solution
jjy at eaglequest.com
Wed Mar 31 18:37:37 PST 2004
To the FreeBSD team,
I struggled with this one for quite a while before figuring it out, so
I had been using FreeBSD 4x for quite some time on my Compaq Presario
1800. And, XFree86-3.6x worked nicely with the laptop's ATI Rage
Mobility graphics chip. Unfortunately, the FreeBSD 4x branch didn't
support the Atheros chipsets in some of the newer networking cards like
the Netgear WG511, so I upgraded to FreeBSD 5.2.1.
After that, I couldn't get XFree86-4x to work reliably with my laptop.
It turned out that the X instability, which included complete system
lockup, was caused by the ACPI module being loaded upon boot-up.
Sometimes the Xserver would start-up sometimes not. Also, there was a
guaranteed system lockup if you exited Xwindows and then re-entered
Xwindows at a later time. In other words, you only got one Xsession per
boot! So, after trying all sorts of things in XF86Config, and upgrading
to XFree86-4.4 from XFree86-4.3 it turned out that all I needed to do
was add the following line to my /boot/device.hints file...
After that everything worked great! Xwindows is stable, and my new
Netgear WG511 card is working like a charm.
By the way the "beastie" menu incorrectly shows "boot with ACPI enabled"
as it's second choice. In actuality it disables ACPI! That's how I
first solved the problem -- by booting with beastie-menue item "2"
selected, finding Xwindows working correctly for a change, and then
doing a kldstat to find that the acpi.ko kernel module wasn't loaded.
Best regards, and thanks for the great operating system!
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