console in 1024x768 mode?

Joel Dahl joel at
Fri Jun 30 15:11:54 UTC 2006

On Tue, 2006-06-27 at 12:42 -0700, Peter Wemm wrote:
> On Saturday 24 June 2006 03:27 pm, Peter Jeremy wrote:
> > On Sat, 2006-Jun-24 19:59:39 +0530, Gobbledegeek wrote:
> > >I tried putting "options VESA" in kernel but buildkernel said
> > >unsupported option.
> >
> > VESA relies on the kernel being able to call BIOS functions.  The
> > bios is i386 so this isn't possible in native amd64.
> >
> > Running non-standard console resolution means something like KGI.
> > This was being worked on some years ago but seems to have died.
> The other option, which many amd64 linux's do, is to have the loader set 
> up the VESA modes and pass the information through to the console 
> driver.  We could do that too because our loader runs in 32 bit mode.  
> The other possibility is to do what the X servers do.  They have a 
> simple emulator for 8088 real mode instructions (see their "int10" 
> module).  They execute the bios code interpretively to do things like 
> mode changes etc.  We could do that too.  It shouldn't be hard to write 
> something like a userland tool that can change the mode and tell the 
> kernel what the new display settings are.  It could even be done as a 
> kernel module, but I'm not sure I'd want a software vm86 emulator in 
> the default kernel as it tends to be a bit big.
> Volunteers, anyone?

This looks like a perfect project for the ideas list[*].  Can someone
with the right knowledge write (just follow the existing layout on the
ideas list) a short text about this subject and send it to me?  Don't
worry about SGML or stuff like that, just give me some text and I'll
mark it up and commit it to the list.



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