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Linux distro. advice: need to output via YPbPr


Bikerdude
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I have a media PC with a Radeon HD 4870 running Windows Xp and XBMC, connected to a 32" CRT via component video (YPbPr). I can't upgrade to Win7/8 because of the in-built Hollywood enforced HDCP/DRM bullshit that only allows windows to output at 640*480, when my TV is capable of displaying 576/600p (720*576 &800*600) and above via the radeon card/driver.

 

I would like to upgrade the whole PC to linux, so its faster to boot, will allow me to run a display res. of MY choice and allow me to run the latest version of Xbmc/Kodi. I have tried a few distro's, but they all suffer from the same issue, which is the out displayed on the TV is all purple & pink hues.

 

So my question is are there any distro's that will recognise how the video card is connected to the TV (like the bios & windows does), or failing that would simply installing the appropriate/latest video AMD radeon driver fix this issue for me..?

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Are you using the open source AMD\ATI drivers or are you installing the closed-source flgrx drivers?

 

I think it takes a long time (if ever) for ATI to release TV out or other proprietary interface options for custom cards.

The closed-source drivers will tend to have these features.

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I think the problems is that its an old card, and you will even only get offered the open source drivers from the distribution.
Were going down the wrong path here, its not a driver issue, its a video output issue. I have not installed linux let along a video driver yet.
Are you using the open source AMD\ATI drivers or are you installing the closed-source flgrx drivers?

Not using any linux distro atm, just windows xp. Evey Linux distro I have so far tried does the pink/purple hue thing.

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Out of the box, no linux distro will come with closed source drivers as far as I know... well maybe Linux Mint:

 

http://www.linuxmint.com/index.php

 

they pretty much install all the stuff that's questionably legal because they "don't care" about IP laws (etc).

In your case, that may be just fine since software patents are a (terrible) USA thing mostly.

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Were going down the wrong path here, its not a driver issue, its a video output issue. I have not installed linux let along a video driver yet.

Yeah, the pink/purple picture is most likely a video driver issue, as it doesn't happen on Windows. And in all the distros you tried, the card was probably run with the open source radeon driver, as that's the only one available in fairly current Linux versions, because the proprietary driver won't support the chipset anymore. AMD usually drops support for chipsets older than 4 years. Thus they won't be offered in recent Linux versions.

Edited by chk772
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Keep in mind though that the driver probably requires an older Xorg and an older kernel version than the one in current Linux versions... i'm afraid you're pretty much in a dead end here, unless you choose to run an old version of the Linux distro of your choice.

Edited by chk772
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they pretty much install all the stuff that's questionably legal because they "don't care" about IP laws (etc).

In your case, that may be just fine since software patents are a (terrible) USA thing mostly.

 

There is nothing legally questionable about the closed-source AMD drivers. They are available in the Ubuntu official repositories, and sometime even include updated versions of the driver provided by AMD before the public release. The reason they are not installed by default is because distributions prefer to use open-source drivers rather than binary blobs, not because there are any legal issues with including them.

 

Keep in mind though that the driver probably requires an older Xorg and an older kernel version than the one in current Linux versions... i'm afraid you're pretty much in a dead end here, unless you choose to run an old version of the Linux distro of your choice.

 

Or wait for the open-source radeon driver to improve so that it no longer exhibits the issue. The open-source video drivers are developed at quite an impressive rate, especially since AMD actually assist with open-source driver development (unlike nVidia).

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Or wait for the open-source radeon driver to improve so that it no longer exhibits the issue. The open-source video drivers are developed at quite an impressive rate, especially since AMD actually assist with open-source driver development (unlike nVidia).

well I have been trying various linux distro's for the last 2yrs, all I want a version that works. Any version of linux is gonna be newer than Xp.

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Will do, but if I want to how dop i install the 13.10 catayst driver as the file has a .run extension. Or will I need to try a different version of linux..?

 

$ chmod +x ./catalyst_filename.run
$ sudo ./catalyst_filename.run

 

or just

 

$ sudo /bin/sh ./catalyst_filename.run

 

since I think it's just a shell script.

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Do not give up to easily :) it took me quite a while to get to know linux when i first tried it many years back, todays distros have come a long way since then in terms of ease, back then the only way to install drivers was becomiing root and do it by shell commands (now thats nasty hehe). Not sure what distro you are using but the ubuntu line and offshots are probably the easiest to get around in, so might be a good idea to try one of those if you're not using it yet. It also has many ready made packages for pretty much anything you can think off. The gui is however not like most other distros that either use gnome or KDE,

ubuntu uses there own gui system but its pretty easy to get around in so should not take long to understand where everything is. Could also try steamos though its still in beta you can get a premade iso from one of the guys on the sites forums that does not require UEFI and uses a visual installer instead of the shell scripts that are normally used for installing it. The repo is here http://repo.steampowered.com/download/ you can get the dvd iso from there. steamos uses debian which is also a good distro.

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I cannot make a recommendation for you, but you might register and ask in the Arch Linux forums. I've been an Arch user for 7 or 8 years, but everything I've used has been either nVidia or Intel graphics. There is a fairly large ATI user base with a pair of stickied threads dedicated to ATI users. They might be able to advise you there.

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