Configuring the Intel Graphics Media Accelerator 900-950 for Linux

Author(s)

Bill Giannikos

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Introduction

This guide will help you configure the Intel Graphics Media Accelerator 900 and 950 graphics chips for Linux. With modern Linux distributions it should be able to automatically configure this graphics card but some users may have problems with incorrect resolutions. We will explain how to fix this issue here.

Notes

Before following the guide here, follow your distributions normal procedure on configuring graphics cards. On many systems it is not necessary to use the 915resolution tool described here.

The 915resolution program described below does not make permanent changes to your computer, all settings you change using this are lost after a reboot.

This guide will recommend using 915resolution to change the mode at 3c which normally (but not always) is 1400×1050 8bit. If you follow this you will no longer be able to use the 1400×1050 8bit resolution. Normally this is fine, but you can run the following command to list the modes available to you and select whichever one you would like to overwrite.

915resolution -l

Configuration with 915resolution

CentOS/Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.0

The 915resolution tool is not included with CentOS/Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.0 so we will need to use a 3rd party repository. Here we will be using the ATrpms repository.

If you are not currently using the ATrpms repository then, as root, add the following lines to the bottom of your /etc/yum.conf file:

[atrpms]
name=CentOS $releasever - $basearch - ATrpms
baseurl=http://dl.atrpms.net/el$releasever-$basearch/atrpms/stable
gpgkey=http://ATrpms.net/RPM-GPG-KEY.atrpms
gpgcheck=1

Then execute the following command:

yum install 915resolution

Now you will need to configure the settings to match your monitor's native resolution. Edit the /etc/sysconfig/915resolution file with your favourite editor. You can use the following command:

nano -w /etc/sysconfig/915resolution

Change the contents of this file to match below, changing the resolution to match your display's resolution:

RESOLUTION="3c 1280 800"

Finally we need to ensure this program is launched on startup by execute the following:

chkconfig --add 915resolution
chkconfig 915resolution on

Reboot your system and you should now be able to use the resolution you entered.

Debian GNU/Linux 4.0 (Etch)

First, as root, install 915resolution with the following command:

apt-get install 915resolution

Now you will need to configure the settings to match your monitor's native resolution. Edit the file /etc/default/915resolution with your favourite editor. You can use this line below to launch the editor:

gedit /etc/default/915resolution

Change the contents of this file to match below, changing the XRESO and YRESO to match your display's resolution:

mode=3c
XRESO=1280
YRESO=800
BIT=32

Reboot your system and you should now be able to use the resolution you entered.

Fedora Core 6

The 915resolution tool is not included with Fedora Core 6 so we will need to use a 3rd party repository. Here we will be using the ATrpms repository.

If you are not currently using the ATrpms repository then, as root, add the following lines to the bottom of your /etc/yum.conf file:

[atrpms]
name=Fedora Core $releasever - $basearch - ATrpms
baseurl=http://dl.atrpms.net/fc$releasever-$basearch/atrpms/stable
gpgkey=http://ATrpms.net/RPM-GPG-KEY.atrpms
gpgcheck=1

Then execute the following command:

yum install 915resolution

Now you will need to configure the settings to match your monitor's native resolution. Edit the /etc/sysconfig/915resolution file with your favourite editor. You can use the following command:

nano -w /etc/sysconfig/915resolution

Change the contents of this file to match below, changing the resolution to match your display's resolution:

RESOLUTION="3c 1280 800"

Finally we need to ensure this program is launched on startup by execute the following:

chkconfig --add 915resolution
chkconfig 915resolution on

Reboot your system and you should now be able to use the resolution you entered.

Fedora 7

Unlike Fedora Core 6, Fedora 7 includes the 915resolution tool so there is no need to use a 3rd party repository.

As root, execute the following command:

yum install 915resolution

Now you will need to configure the settings to match your monitor's native resolution. Edit the /etc/sysconfig/915resolution file with your favourite editor. You can use the following command:

nano -w /etc/sysconfig/915resolution

Change the contents of this file to match below, changing the resolution to match your display's resolution:

RESOLUTION="3c 1280 800"

Finally we need to ensure this program is launched on startup by execute the following:

chkconfig --add 915resolution
chkconfig 915resolution on

Reboot your system and you should now be able to use the resolution you entered.

Gentoo Linux 2007.0

The 915resolution tool is only included in the ~arch repository. If you are not using this repository, as root, execute the following line:

echo "sys-apps/915resolution ~x86" >> /etc/portage/package.keywords

or if you are using the 64bit version of Gentoo:

echo "sys-apps/915resolution ~amd64" >> /etc/portage/package.keywords

Next install the 915resolution tool with the following command:

emerge 915resolution

Now you will need to configure the settings to match your monitor's native resolution. Edit the /etc/conf.d/915resolution file with your favourite editor. You can use the following command:

nano -w /etc/conf.d/915resolution

Change the contents of this file to match below, changing the resolution to match your display's resolution:

replace=("3c 1280 800 32")

Finally we need to ensure this program is launched on startup by execute the following:

rc-update add 915resolution boot default

Reboot your system and you should now be able to use the resolution you entered.

Mandriva Linux 2007

Mandriva has a mechanism for automatically calling the 915resolution program when needed. It should not be necessary to do any extra configuration work.

SuSE Linux 10.1

To do.

Ubuntu/KUbuntu/XUbuntu Linux 7.04

First you can try using the newer xorg driver from Intel by executing the following:

sudo apt-get install xserver-xorg-video-intel

And then reboot your computer.

You should now be able to go to System → Preferences → Screen Resolution and select the native resolution of your monitor. If not, you will need to use the 915resolution tool. First install 915resolution with the following command:

sudo apt-get install 915resolution

Now you will need to configure the settings to match your monitor's native resolution. Edit the file /etc/default/915resolution with your favourite editor. You can use this line below to launch the editor:

sudo gedit /etc/default/915resolution

Change the contents of this file to match below, changing the XRESO and YRESO to match your display's resolution:

mode=3c
XRESO=1280
YRESO=800
BIT=32

Reboot your system and you should now be able to use the resolution you entered.

Ubuntu/KUbuntu/XUbuntu Linux 8.10

The integrated graphics are supported out of the box, though bumping the resolution over 1280×800 can be difficult. The 915resolution package has been removed from Ubuntu 8.10 as has xorg.conf leaving a more automated process of graphics selection.

Generic Method

Backup your /etc/X11/xorg.conf file
Replace it with the one below:

# Note that some configuration settings that could be done previously
# in this file, now are automatically configured by the server and settings
# here are ignored.
#
# If you have edited this file but would like it to be automatically updated
# again, run the following command:
#   sudo dpkg-reconfigure -phigh xserver-xorg

Section "Device"
	Identifier	"Configured Video Device"
EndSection

Section "Monitor"
	Identifier	"Configured Monitor"
EndSection

Section "Screen"
	Identifier	"Default Screen"
	Monitor		"Configured Monitor"
	Device		"Configured Video Device"
EndSection

And then logout and in again.

Tested on Mint 6 Felicia.

Conclusion

Intel has released an open source version of their drivers (http://intellinuxgraphics.org/). Though these drivers do not support the 900GM chipset.


Discussion

Terry, 2014/10/19 18:12

I want to install Linux on my laptop as I am well aware of its benefits especially for programmers. I find your blog very helpful for new learners and also professionals. You are doing a great job. Keep it up. admission essay

JL Espinosa, 2010/03/05 19:32

Opensuse 11.2 after installation does not give good resolution on Intel 900GM, you will need to configure it, I've just downloaded the drivers but I just saw a note that intel linux drivers doesn't support 900GM, so I guess I am going to have to do some more research, I'll post it later.

Marsrover, 2009/06/11 19:28

hey i have ubuntu 9.04 i love it but the graphics were never right

how can i log in a root user

root can't logon from the logon screen
so how can i log on as root

i have to log on as root so i can edit my xorg.conf file
untill then etr will go at 2 frames per second PLEASE HELP

reply to mars_rover@rocketmail.com

Lukas the Impaler, 2009/02/02 13:55

Graphic driver for PCLinuxOS needed

RP, 2009/01/27 09:15

for whom it may help…

After I upgraded to ibex, this stop working correctly. I rolled back to 8.04 and it worked right out-the-box…

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configuring_the_intel_graphics_media_accelerator_900-950_for_linux.txt · Last modified: 2009/04/26 00:05 by 86.129.249.173
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