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Re: best video card for fedora 10

Kevin Kofler wrote:
Thomas Cameron wrote:
 From what I typically see on the lists, NVidia cards with the
proprietary driver typically work well.  That is, if you don't have an
overwhelming objection to using closed source drivers.

You must not be reading the same lists I do... ;-)

I guess it depends on which lists you read and how much faith in put in the postings there.

Yes, many people complain on the fedora-list about nVidia and their proprietary drivers. Many of those complaints are rooted in the fact (as you elude to below) that they are not free (as in speech). They are free to download and use (but you can't distribute them), and you just don't get the same support from nVidia as you would if you were running that less secure OS from Redmond, WA. In fact, in the MythTV world, they practically swear by nVidia and nothing else. And they don't seem to have as many problems configuring the proprietary blob as some people do here.

So, it all depends on what you want to do with your video card. In another thread someone asked what card was the best for using in runlevels 1 & 3. Well, if all you need is a text console, then *any* VGA compatible card will do. If you want to be able to see graphics, maybe a card that support more video modes than 640x480 is better. If you want to watch video, then I would lean towards nVidia. Their video support is *much* further along than Intel or ATI. Their proprietary drivers support XvMC for some of their older hardware and VDPAU support for their newer hardware makes displaying HD video much easier on lesser capable CPUs.

I'm not a gamer, so I can't speak for the gaming capabilities of the various video cards.

So, each question will have different answers depending on the intended usage.

I see no ends of complaints on this list as well as the fedora-test-list and
fedora-devel-list and IRC about all sorts of obscure bugs caused by
proprietary drivers (and nvidia in particular). They are not supported nor
even supportable by anybody other than the manufacturer, who usually does a
horrible job, in particular their installer scripts invariably overwrite
system libraries in a way which will break as soon as the system package is
updated and which also makes uninstalling the driver a hit-or-miss

Don't buy NVidia! Nor a Radeon HD, those are not supported by the Free (as
in speech) drivers yet either.

VESA, nv, nouveau, and nvidia (with 3 different versions for various cards) for nVidia hardware, the last one (three) is (are) the proprietary driver(s). I run the nvidia-96xx version on my old MX400 card which is soon to be replaced by an nVidia 6200 card (the gold standard for MythTV SD TV support). Yes, my home Fedora server is also my MythTV backend.

VESA, ati, radeon, radeonhd, and fglrx for ATI hardware, the last one again being the proprietary driver. My laptop has a Mobility Radeon X1600 video chipset which requires the fglrx drivers for best use of videos, and I wish to hell it was an nVidia chipset instead on ATI. I also have a very old machine with a Radeon 7000 video card, and its practically useless for displaying even SD video.

I'm not even sure about the Intel drivers, but these are mostly motherboard video chipsets, so if you have one, you don't have much choice.

        Kevin Kofler

Kevin J. Cummings
kjchome rcn com
cummings kjchome homeip net
cummings kjc386 framingham ma us
Registered Linux User #1232 (http://counter.li.org)

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