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The following is an archive of a post made to our 'vox-tech mailing list' by one of its subscribers.

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Re: [vox-tech] attention: voodoo3 owners
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Re: [vox-tech] attention: voodoo3 owners

  • Subject: Re: [vox-tech] attention: voodoo3 owners
  • From: Micah Cowan <micah@cowanboMAPSx.com>
  • Date: Fri, 03 Nov 2000 11:49:36 -0800
  • References: Pine.LNX.4.21.0011030953140.7620-100000@belial.ucdavis.edu

On Fri, Nov 03, 2000 at 10:04:17AM -0800, Peter Jay Salzman wrote:
> dear fellow voodoo3 owners,
> the driver for your card will NOT work with 2.4 kernels.  not even if
> you compile it from the source code.

As a voodoo3 3000 owner, I'm somewhat disillusioned.  I bought 3dfx
because I had heard that the voodoo cards were the best-supported.  I
find myself fairly skeptical of that now, because there are no working
DRI drivers for voodoo3 (you can't do stuff in windows - it forces
full-screen mode).  They have some test drivers that work with almost
nothing.  This causes some stability issues - if a program using 3dfx
bombs, you can't get the console back (although i discovered that you
can switch blindly between virtual consoles and type blindly so you
can actually shut-down nicely - and you can also start up X!  Just
never reach an actual console...).  This means that you can pretty
much forget about 3-week uptime, let alone 6-month, if you play games
an awful lot.  This is a real annoyance to a Linux user used to long
uptimes and such.

On the plus side, the card is *extremely* fast, and the drivers are
open-source - something *very* uncommon in the industry, but an
excellent precedent - especially when all their competetors realize
that a larger portion of Linux users buy 3dfx accelarator cards for
such reasons.  I think the rest will smarten up eventually.

As I'm sure Henry can appreciate, one major reason why closed source
is a Bad Thing(tm) on Linux - is that it always assumes x86
architecture.  Closed source for Linux is never released for PowerPC
architectures, because they are in the minority and "not worth the
trouble."  This sucks, because a well-written open-source
implementation often works perfectly with PPC with little/no tweaking,
and even if it doesn't, at least the Mac-fanatics have the source,
which they can adapt.  There are several other non-x86 architectures
as well, with users whom I assume must be equally disgruntled when
things are ported closed-source to Linux.


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