ATI on FreeBSD! FireGL Linux Driver Port

Chris Gilbert Chris at
Mon Dec 26 19:51:09 PST 2005

Hi there!

Some time ago (about a year actually) I started some work in cooperation with 
ATI to port their Linux "fglrx" driver to FreeBSD.

Well, about 2 months into that process I ended up moving to the other side of 
the pond and leaving one of my dev machines behind. (The one with the ATI 

However, this last week I managed to get ahold of another machine with an ATI 
card, and have picked back up where I left off about 9 months ago.

I've put together a preliminary alpha release of the driver port in it's 
current state, and done a bit of testing myself. However, I would be thrilled 
to get some feedback from you guys!

I have probably done some really horrible things, and I would like to hear it 
from you nice folks rather than from a thousand angry gamers. :)

The driver as it stands does the following:
 * Installs the applicable linux libraries, and ATI programs to your 
 * Compiles and installs the following ATI programs (For FreeBSD): 
fgl_glxgears, fglrx_gamma, and the ATI control panel.
 * Installs the X11 drivers and libraries. (Linux builds, but work fine under 
 * Supports full 2D acceleration, including accelerated XVideo.
 * Supports TV out and MultiHead.
 * Does NOT support 3D acceleration, or build the kernel module.

I have tested the driver with an ATI Radeon 9800LE, and it seems to work great 
for desktop, non-gaming use. (Playing video, running KDE, etc)

I am currently working on the kernel module portion of the project.

The X side of the driver is ready and waiting for a DRM device to plug into. 

The current hurdles are working with the ATI team to get rid of any 
show-stopping linux specifics in the closed-source static libraries which I 
have to link my kernel module to.

If there is significant intrest in the project's current state, (without 3D) I 
will make a proper port and submit it.

If there are any problems please let me know and I will do my best to fix them 

You can download it at:


Chris Gilbert

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