The last week or so has been one of transition for AMD’s Catalyst driver, especially for those you have a quite old Radeon GPU. Alongside the launch of Ubuntu 12.10 – that comes with new xorg 1.13 and breaks the fglrx (aka Catalyst 12.9) – AMD has also drop the support for Radeon HD 4000, HD 3000 or HD 2000 graphics cards, forcing a broken upgrade up to Quantal 12.10. On the development side of things, this problem is not 100% percent related to Ubuntu 12.10, but it comes with the new version of xorg 1.13 that is included in Quantal, meaning that you need to downgrade xorg down to 1.12. So for the time being there is no AMD Legacy support with X-Server 1.13, and you need to downgrade. Capping this off, the solution comes from inside the root of the problem, thus AMD’s driver team has launched a new driver for these outdated GPU models, called Catalyst Legacy.
If you own one of these GPUs, then you need the Legacy driver:
These cards need Legacy Catalyst driver in order to be functional
AMD Radeon HD 4000 Series
AMD Radeon HD 3000 Series
AMD Radeon HD 2000 Series
AMD Radeon HD Series AGP
AMD Mobility Radeon HD 4000 Series
AMD Mobility Radeon HD 3000 Series
AMD Mobility Radeon HD 2000 Series
It’s clear these jumps in complexity and development time doesn’t work for linux, breaking everything upside down. This makes us quite disappointed because many users when they wished to upgrade their Ubuntu 12.04 up to 12.10, they encountered a problem concerning their graphics. Maybe that’s why there are some negative comments, concerning Unity’s speed.
Have a peak to the AMD’s Press Release:
“AMD has moved to the AMD Radeon™ HD 4000, AMD Radeon HD 3000, and AMD Radeon HD 2000 Series new driver support model. These updates will focus on resolving application specific issues and critical updates. The reason for the shift in support policy is largely due to the fact that the AMD Radeon HD 4000, AMD Radeon HD 3000, and AMD Radeon HD 2000 Series have been optimized to their maximum potential from a performance and feature perspective.“
As we stated earlier, AMD will be moving to a dynamic/as-needed schedule for driver releases. It’s their hope – as it is ours – that they’ll be able to further improve on the quality and meaningfulness of Catalyst driver releases. Certainly this decision is a good thing for new hardware support since you upgrade your hardware in regular basis. However, sad but true, I personally own a Radeon HD4890 and now it’s nothing more than a Legacy garbage down the mouldy basement.
let’s fix the problem
- Downgrade from X-Server 1.13 to X-Server 1.12
- Download the Legacy Driver
- install it
- “patch it” (since you would not be able to install vanilla drivers on 3.5 kernel.)
OR Tomasz Makarewicz will do all the above steps automatically
In order to download the driver, on the button bellow:
Unzip the package and choose one of them:
This method will not work since there is no packaging script for quantal in
legacy driver. So for the time being you CANNOT follow these instructions.
unzip amd-driver-installer-* sudo sh ./amd-driver-installer-*.run --buildpkg Ubuntu/quantal sudo dpkg -i fglrx*.deb sudo aticonfig --initial -f
OR IF YOU DON’T KNOW HOW TO DOWNGRADE X-SERVER, PATCH THE VANILLA KERNEL ETC… TRY THIS PPA
We’ve been informed by OSArena that with the release of the Catalyst 12.6 Legacy, there is a 3rd party repo created by Tomasz Makarewicz for this purpose only. You can’t install AMD Legacy on Ubuntu 12.10. It is not supporting X-Server 1.13. X-Server 1.12 will not break Unity. Actually in Tomasz ppa he is downgrading X-Server to 1.12 version to make it work with fglrx-legacy. Just in case you want to follow the white rabbit, here’s the path for the blue pill…
This repository is downgrading X-Server from 1.13 to 1.12.3 (which is maximum version supported by the drivers). Also driver Catalyst 12.6 (fglrx 18.104.22.168) is patched with this:
so it could work on Linux kernel 3.5.
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:makson96/fglrx sudo apt-get update sudo apt-get upgrade sudo apt-get install fglrx-legacy
Now reboot your PC
Thanks to Tomasz Makarewicz for the clarification