[PC-BSD Testing] Some news for the NVidia folks out there regarding XOrg server 1.8 onward

Arthur Koziol A-Koziol at neiu.edu
Mon Jul 19 12:17:49 PDT 2010

I was kind of surprised by this news myself but maybe they'll have a 
change of heart later on from community pressure.

  NVIDIA's Oldest Legacy Driver Will Not Gain New Support

    Posted by Michael Larabel on July 18, 2010

A few days back there was the release of two updated NVIDIA legacy 
drivers <http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=news_item&px=ODQyMQ> for 
Linux, but only their newest legacy driver (they have three different 
legacy drivers at present) gained support for X.Org Server 1.8 
<http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=search&q=X+Server+1.8>. This 
support though is needed for the older NVIDIA drivers to operate on 
newer Linux distributions like Fedora 13 and openSUSE 11.3. On this 
Sunday evening we have now confirmation from NVIDIA that they have no 
plans on providing xorg-server 1.8 support for their oldest legacy driver.

The NVIDIA 173.14.75 legacy driver released provides X.Org Server 1.8 
support so that those customers with GeForce 5 (FX) graphics cards can 
continue using the proprietary driver for 3D/OpenGL and XvMC video 
acceleration support when they update their X Server when updating their 
distributions. The other NVIDIA 96.43.18 legacy update provided some 
bug-fixes, but went without any server 1.8 support. NVIDIA though will 
be updating the 96.xx.xx driver in the future with this updated X.Org 

NVIDIA's Andy Ritger wrote to us, "Yes, we will eventually add xserver 
1.8 support to the 96.xx.xx series. We do not plan to backport new X 
server support to the 71.xx.xx series." In other words, it's basically 
the end of the line for the NVIDIA 71.xx.xx Linux legacy driver.

This is the driver for any customers with GeForce 3, GeForce 256, TNT / 
TNT2, Riva 128, Vanta, and Quadro 2 Pro graphics cards. This NVIDIA 
hardware is quite old so it shouldn't affect too many people, but those 
running such vintage hardware will have the only choice of switching 
over to using the Nouveau 
<http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=search&q=Nouveau> graphics driver 
stack when updating their X.Org Server or Linux distribution. Those with 
GeForce 2 Go, GeForce 4 MX, GeForce 4 Go, and GeForce 4 Ti graphics 
cards still should be getting this new support within the 96.xx.xx 
driver, but you may have to wait a while.

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