For more information, join the team subscribe to the mailing list 
at the bottom of the Launchpad page 

Please join this team if you are new by clicking on the "Join 
Team" link at the right of the Launchpad page. It's important to 
have as many users in the community as possible to request for 
appropriate support.

Thursday, 16 April 2009

New Powersaving features in open-source ATI drivers: DynamicPM and ForceLowPowerMode

[Phoronix] X.Org ATI Driver Supports New Power Options
X.Org ATI Driver Supports New Power Options

Besides seeing 3D acceleration for their hardware in an open-source driver, one of the other leading requests from ATI Radeon customers has been to see improved power management within the ATI X.Org driver stack. There is Dynamic Clocks support and some other power management capabilities, along with some more innovative ways, but ATI's PowerPlay is not fully implemented in the open-source stack. Today though committed to the xf86-video-ati driver is support for two new power management features. The two new power options in this open-source driver are ForceLowPowerMode and DynamicPM, both of which are xorg.conf options.

The ForceLowPowerMode will force the graphics processor to always run in a low-power mode, while DynamicPM will adjust the power management behavior based upon DPMS (the Display Power Management Settings). In the DynamicPM mode, the low-power option will only be used when the system is idling. Both options will reduce the performance potential of the ATI graphics processor, but will consume less power and generate less heat.

The ForceLowPowerMode and DynamicPM will clock down both the GPU core and memory speeds along with only using PCI Express x2 bandwidth (instead of PCI-E x16) when operating in the low-power mode. The core and memory clock adjusting is supported through AtomBIOS on the R500 series and later, but there is also hard-coded support for the R100 through R400 hardware.

Checkout the latest Git code of the xf86-video-ati driver to access these options. At this time, these options cannot be found in the xf86-video-radeonhd driver.

If you have access to any of the laptops below and have tried to run Linux, please take a moment to provide the DSDT information for the laptop in this link:

  1. Sony Vaio Z-series (intel/nvidia)
  2. Fujitsu Siemens Amilo XI 3650 (intel/nvidia)
  3. BenQ Joybook S42 (intel/nvidia)
  4. ASUS N10J (intel/nvidia)
  5. Dell Studio XPS 13 (nvidia/nvidia)
  6. ASUS Intros G71Gx (?/nvidia GeForce 260M)
  7. MSI GT628 (?/nvidia GeForce 160M)
  8. LG Xnote P510 Laptop (?/nvidia GeForce GT 130M)
  9. HP HDX 18t (?/nvidia GeForce GT 130M)
  10. Samsung Q320 (?/nvidia GeForce G105M)
  11. Dell XPS M1730 (nvidia/nvidia)
  12. MSI EX630 (nvidia/nvidia -- )
  13. + MSI GX403 (?/nvidia GeForce Gt 130M)
  14. Toshiba Qosmio X305-Q706/Q708 (nvidia/nvidia -- 9400m + 2x9800m GTS)
  15. Acer Aspire 7530 (nvidia/nvidia -- 9100M G + GeForce 9300M GS)
  16. ASUS X83Vm-X1 (?/nvidia)
  17. + Clevo M860TU (?/nvidia GeForce 9800M GTS)
  18. + Acer Aspire 8930G (?/nvidia GeForce 9700M GT)
  19. + Asus G50V (?/nvidia GeForce 9700M GT)
  20. + Zepto Mythos A15 (?/nvidia)
  21. + Asus M70VN (?/nvidia GeForce 9650M GT)
  22. + Acer Aspire 8920 (?/nvidia GeForce 9650M GS)
  23. + Asus M50VM-A1 (?/nvidia GeForce 9600M GS)
  24. Lenovo ThinkPad T500 (intel/ati)
  25. Lenovo ThinkPad T400 (intel/ati)
  26. ASUS M51Ta (intel/ati)
  27. Fujitsu-Siemens Amilo Sa 3650 (intel/ati)
  28. MSI PX211 12'' (intel/ati)
  29. HP Pavilion tx2500 (intel/ati)

To compile your DSDT information, install if you haven't already the acpidump and iasl tools:
sudo apt-get install acpidump iasl           # on Debian-based systems

Then run the following commands:

sudo acpidump > acpidump.txt
sudo acpixtract acpidump.txt
iasl -d DSDT.dat

This will create a DSDT.dsl file that you can attach to the bug report. This information will allow the developers to fully implement the hybrid graphics features for Linux.