Gentoo ATI Migration guide
Replacing the binary driver with the open-source driver
Removing the old binary driver
Code Listing 1.1: Removing the binary driver
# emerge -C x11-drivers/ati-drivers
# eselect opengl set xorg-x11
Please note that ati-drivers are bad at uninstalling themselves and might
leave the fglrx.ko module in your
/lib/modules/*kernel*/video/ folder. If this file resides on your
system after uninstalling ati-drivers, please remove it.
Getting 2D acceleration to work
To get working 2D acceleration, we have to specify which graphic card we use in
Code Listing 1.2: Adding the radeon driver to make.conf
# echo 'VIDEO_CARDS="radeon"' >> /etc/make.conf
Now that our environment is setup, re-emerge all the packages that use the
Code Listing 1.3: Reemerging all required packages
# emerge -avuDN world
This also update your system, so if you don't want to do so just drop the
Next step is a bit tricky, because we have to correctly configure
If you are using x11-base/xorg-server-1.6 or newer, then you can just
simply remove xorg.conf and skip this step.
First, open the file /etc/X11/xorg.conf in your favorite editor.
Second, search for the section containing Driver "fglrx". Third, remove
everything in this section except the Driver and Identifier bits.
Now replace "fglrx" with "radeon". More options for this driver
can be found by reading man radeon.
Code Listing 1.4: Sample xorg.conf configuration
Getting 3D acceleration to work
ATI's binary driver uses its own kernel module and OpenGL implementation.
However, the open-source driver has the kernel module included in the kernel
by default and needs just enabling.
To configure the kernel simply run make menuconfig in
/usr/src/linux and enable the following options as modules:
Code Listing 1.5: Enable the correct modules in the kernel
Device Drivers ->
Graphics support ->
[M] Direct Rendering Manager (XFree86 4.1.0 and Higher DRI support) ->
[M] ATI Radeon
After enabling those options just quit the configuration manager and run make
&& make modules_install to get those installed.
To use this module just type as root modprobe radeon or add the
radeon module to the the correct config file so that it is loaded
automatically on boot, such as /etc/modules.autoload.d/kernel-2.6
or /etc/conf.d/modules (if you're using OpenRC and
If you had your fglrx module loaded, you can't just rmmod it and
load the radeon module. This leads to memory corruption and kernel panic.
To get rid of the fglrx module you'll have to reboot your computer.
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