Intel Graphics Performance Guide for Ubuntu 9.04 (Jaunty) Users

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Overview

Some users are experiencing performance issues with Intel integrated graphics chips in Jaunty, for several reasons:

  • The current driver in our repository has some performance issues with the EXA acceleration method. Users will notice 2D performance is poor due to the default "migration heuristic" employed by EXA (to "always" migrate pixmaps), but this causes performance issues for many users. Setting the heuristic to "greedy" alleviates this problem somewhat. See "man exa".

  • The new and faster acceleration method (UXA) is not enabled by default, due to issues reported by many users. This code is being actively developed, and many stability and performance issues have been resolved in the latest drivers (specifically within the intel driver, libdrm,mesa and the latest kernel 2.6.29.4). Unfortunately, Jaunty will not include the latest versions necessary to improve performance.
  • 3D performance has regressed compared to the Intrepid release, possibly due to major code changes that have resulted from the introduction to the new acceleration and memory management code (UXA, GEM, DRI2). Due to these changes, there seems to be some regressions in the "legacy" DRI acceleration.
  • Either Xorg or the "intel" driver seems to be suffering from a bug, in which the memory region allocated for the graphics card is not set up with the proper type of caching. This results in jerky video playback of almost any content (from 720p media, all the way down to simple 320×240 mpeg content), and a potential loss of performance for other 2D and 3D operations.

There are three possible configuration that this guide will present:

Safe Configuration

  • For this configuration, you will upgrade to the latest stable Xorg drivers (via the X-Updates PPA), enable UXA acceleration and create a workaround for the MTRR bug. This is the solution recommended for users who possess hardware devices that depend on a restricted driver. If you don't know what this means, then this is the solution you should use.

Optimal* Configuration

  • This configuration is identical to "Safe", but includes the 2.6.30 kernel. Using this kernel will improve 3D performance for many users, but you will lose access to restricted kernel drivers. This configuration yields the best results for my system (an 855GM chipset), but of course, your experience may differ.

Bleeding-Edge* ConfigurationThis configuration is the most risky. This will enable repository which contains bleeding-edge mesa & Xorg drivers which are continually updated (via the xorg-edgers PPA), enable UXA acceleration, create a workaround for the MTRR bug and install kernel 2.6.30. This configuration is not necessarily the fastest (in fact, the Optimal configuration is fastest for my hardware), and is recommended only for users who want to test the latest Xorg code.
Note: As per the PPA maintainer's wish, you are instructed to read the instructions here, since the Bleeding-Edge repository is prone to breakage and important instructions may be added. Don't request support for these packages (and don't be surprised if questions are left unanswered).

The solution

More Updated instructions and support check here

Method 2

Using default Jaunty packages and kernel

The following procedure confirmed working on following Intel graphic cards

00:02.0 VGA compatible controller: Intel Corporation 82852/855GM Integrated Graphics Device (rev 02)

00:02.0 VGA compatible controller [0300]: Intel Corporation Mobile GM965/GL960 Integrated Graphics Controller [8086:2a02] (rev 03)

00:02.0 VGA compatible controller: Intel Corporation Mobile 945GM/GMS, 943/940GML Express Integrated Graphics Controller (rev 03)

00:02.0 VGA compatible controller: Intel Corporation 82845G/GL[Brookdale-G]/GE Chipset Integrated Graphics Device (rev 03)

1)Discovering the memory of your card; do this command:

lspci -vv

and search in the output for the block regarding VGA; in my case:

00:02.0 VGA compatible controller: Intel Corporation 82852/855GM Integrated Graphics Device (rev 02)
Subsystem: Fujitsu Siemens Computers Device 106a
Control: I/O+ Mem+ BusMaster+ SpecCycle- MemWINV- VGASnoop- ParErr- Stepping- SERR- FastB2B- DisINTx-
Status: Cap+ 66MHz- UDF- FastB2B+ ParErr- DEVSEL=fast >TAbort- <TAbort- <MAbort- >SERR- <PERR- INTx+
Latency: 0
Interrupt: pin A routed to IRQ 16
Region 0: Memory at d8000000 (32-bit, prefetchable) [size=128M]
Region 1: Memory at e0380000 (32-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=512K]
Region 2: I/O ports at ec00 [size=8]
Capabilities: <access denied>
Kernel modules: intelfb

In red you can see the amount of the memory that your card can manage and in blue the non-prefetchable memory. In order to use the video card memory in the correct way, you can use Videoram option in xorg.conf; but we must calculate the ram from MB to KB in order to use it in Videoram option; here the table:

16 -> 16384
32 -> 32768
64 -> 65536
128 -> 131072
256 -> 262144

Now we have to subtract the value of non-prefetchable to our amount of ram; in my case:

131072 -- 512 = 130560

2)As soon as you calculate your video ram minus the non-prefetchable memory, you can modify your xorg.conf in the device section:

sudo gedit /etc/X11/xorg.conf

In my case the device section is configured like this:

Section "Device"
Identifier "Configured Video Device"
Driver "intel"
Option "AccelMethod" "UXA"
VideoRam 130560
EndSection

Please be sure that VideoRam matching the ram of Video card based on what you calculate above. Of course the option UXA is mandatory too.
Save xorg.conf

3)If you are using Compiz, please modify these settings using Compiz manager:

ccsm

Choose General options -> General -> remove the flag on Unredirect Fullscreen Windows

Choose General options -> Display Settings -> remove the flag Sync To VBlank

Close ccsm

4)Reboot your system

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78 thoughts on “Intel Graphics Performance Guide for Ubuntu 9.04 (Jaunty) Users

  1. #2 worked for me.. gateway laptop, ma8738, intel 945, thanks alot, can use full screen and compiz again! good times! ~ss

    [Reply]

  2. Hello,

    I am really thankful for you help with this issue. I’ve been trying to find a solution to this problem for a long time without any success. First I tried the optimal configuration. It worked fine for a while and then the laptop started to freeze up without any reason or following any patter. Hence, It was a little hard to troubleshoot. And now I am trying the safe configuration, so far, no freezing, the graphic looks much better and smother.

    I have to say that I am using:

    Ubuntu jaunty of course.
    video Controler: Intel Corporation Mobile 945GM/GMS, 943/940GML

    Regards
    MARTeck

    [Reply]

  3. 00:02.0 VGA compatible controller: Intel Corporation Mobile 945GM/GMS, 943/940GML Express Integrated Graphics Controller (rev 03)
    Subsystem: Hewlett-Packard Company Device 30aa
    Control: I/O+ Mem+ BusMaster+ SpecCycle- MemWINV- VGASnoop- ParErr- Stepping- SERR- FastB2B- DisINTx-
    Status: Cap+ 66MHz- UDF- FastB2B+ ParErr- DEVSEL=fast >TAbort- <TAbort- SERR- <PERR- INTx-
    Latency: 0
    Interrupt: pin A routed to IRQ 16
    Region 0: Memory at e8400000 (32-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=512K]
    Region 1: I/O ports at 6000 [size=8]
    Region 2: Memory at d0000000 (32-bit, prefetchable) [size=256M]
    Region 3: Memory at e8480000 (32-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=256K]
    Capabilities:
    Kernel modules: intelfb

    ________ I think its bit different from the above displayed with my configuration , regarding the ‘prefetchable’ part. Is it OK , can I proceed further ?

    [Reply]

  4. Vibin Lakshman

    I have the hardware and configuration that you have.

    I’ve been using safe configuration for a while without any problem. The graphics are much faster and smoother than before. In other words, the render are much better.

    I followed the procedure for safe configuration and installed the last xserver-xorg-video-intel drivers (2.7.1).

    This is my xorg.conf (Only Device section):

    Section “Device”
    Identifier “Configured Video Device”
    Driver “intel”
    Option “AccelMethod” “UXA”
    VideoRam 261376
    EndSection

    Note: I am not pretty sure about the order but I made the chances in my xorg.conf file before I upgraded the drivers.
    Good luck!

    [Reply]

  5. Thank you for the great solution. Now, the video playback quality is just perfect.

    I have had the same problem for a really long time (almost a year), and I checked several forums. But, the problem was never solved until today. In less than a few minutes the problem was solved.

    Just thank you for sharing the great information.

    [Reply]

  6. works wonders. as long as Firefox isn’t loading up on Flash! :)

    Intel 845G/GV Hewlett Packard/ MSI board

    [Reply]

  7. This is mine :
    VGA compatible controller: Intel Corporation Mobile GM965/GL960 Integrated Graphics Controller (rev 03)
    Subsystem: Acer Incorporated [ALI] Device 0135
    Control: I/O+ Mem+ BusMaster+ SpecCycle- MemWINV- VGASnoop- ParErr- Stepping- SERR- FastB2B- DisINTx+
    Status: Cap+ 66MHz- UDF- FastB2B+ ParErr- DEVSEL=fast >TAbort- <TAbort- SERR- <PERR- INTx-
    Latency: 0
    Interrupt: pin A routed to IRQ 2298
    Region 0: Memory at fc000000 (64-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=1M]
    Region 2: Memory at d0000000 (64-bit, prefetchable) [size=256M]
    Region 4: I/O ports at 1800 [size=8]
    Capabilities:
    Kernel modules: intelfb

    VideoRAM Calculation :
    1048576 – 1024 = 1047552

    Is it right to set xorg.conf like this ? :

    Section “Device”
    Identifier “Configured Video Device”
    Driver “intel”
    Option “AccelMethod” “UXA”
    VideoRam 1047552
    EndSection

    Thanx for your help, sorry for my bad english

    [Reply]

  8. Increase alot of performance,no more sluggish, smooth, thanks

    my setting

    00:02.0 VGA compatible controller: Intel Corporation Mobile 945GM/GMS, 943/940GML Express Integrated Graphics Controller (rev 03)
    Subsystem: Toshiba America Info Systems Device 0003
    Control: I/O+ Mem+ BusMaster+ SpecCycle- MemWINV- VGASnoop- ParErr- Stepping- SERR- FastB2B- DisINTx-
    Status: Cap+ 66MHz- UDF- FastB2B+ ParErr- DEVSEL=fast >TAbort- <TAbort- SERR- <PERR- INTx-
    Latency: 0
    Interrupt: pin A routed to IRQ 16
    Region 0: Memory at ffd80000 (32-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=512K]
    Region 1: I/O ports at cff8 [size=8]
    Region 2: Memory at e0000000 (32-bit, prefetchable) [size=256M]
    Region 3: Memory at ffd40000 (32-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=256K]
    Capabilities:
    Kernel modules: intelfb

    my xorg.conf

    Section “Device”
    Identifier “Configured Video Device”
    #Option “MigrationHeuristic” “greedy”
    Driver “intel”
    Option “AccelMethod” “uxa”
    VideoRam 261632
    EndSection

    Section “Monitor”
    Identifier “Configured Monitor”
    EndSection

    Section “Screen”
    Identifier “Default Screen”
    Monitor “Configured Monitor”
    Device “Configured Video Device”
    EndSection

    Not modify anything for compiz.

    On paper my VGA memory only 128mb shared, but detected 256MB, leave it as 256 because i have max of memory installed. any problem with that ?

    [Reply]

  9. Thanks a lot. My new computer looked so slow but now its working as expected and KWin effects so good!

    I just modified the x.org file (I stick to default kernel and X.org as long as possible).

    Here is my VGA controller specifications:

    00:02.0 VGA compatible controller: Intel Corporation Mobile 4 Series Chipset Integrated Graphics Controller (rev 07)
    Subsystem: Lenovo Device 3a02
    Control: I/O+ Mem+ BusMaster+ SpecCycle- MemWINV- VGASnoop- ParErr- Stepping- SERR- FastB2B- DisINTx+
    Status: Cap+ 66MHz- UDF- FastB2B+ ParErr- DEVSEL=fast >TAbort- <TAbort- SERR- <PERR- INTx-
    Latency: 0
    Interrupt: pin A routed to IRQ 2297
    Region 0: Memory at f4000000 (64-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=4M]
    Region 2: Memory at d0000000 (64-bit, prefetchable) [size=256M]
    Region 4: I/O ports at 1800 [size=8]
    Capabilities:

    [Reply]

  10. Method 2 worked on my Dell GX60 with Intel 82845G/GL. Thank you kindly.

    Hopefully Ubuntu will make the permanent system corrections ASAP.

    [Reply]

  11. Hi !

    I used method 2 without instlling any new drivers or x. i have an eeetop 1602 and my problem is, that i cant change the resolution to e.g. 1024×768. if i do, i get a blanc screen, but system ist still up and running. i need to reboot to get old resolution back. any ideas what i can do?

    [Reply]

  12. hi people
    im on karmic and using gm965 on this guide
    what can i say about that
    1 – u follow the howto to upgrade jaunty driver
    2 – open synaptic package on local/obsolete
    3 – force install for all intel driver
    4 – make this remain libgl1-mesa-dev libgl1-mesa-glx libglu1-mesa libglu1-mesa-dev mesa-common-dev
    5 – and reboot..
    6 – your intel driver now is really fast
    7 – i can play games without any problem
    8 – hope this help

    [Reply]

  13. hello,i have a graphic card: 82852/82855 and since i have tryed to set ubuntu 10/04 the computer stops after a few seconds and ask to restart in low graphic mode,i have tryed to go in xorgconf like suggest some one one that forum and it ask me to turn low graphic mode immediately,maybee i just have to wait for some better performances of ubuntu10/04?Then what do i kneed to set in the x.conf as for driver?

    [Reply]

  14. Thanks for the sollution.

    Just a sugestion. Beware of the quotation-marks. If you copy-paste this (“Device”) in VI editor you can get:
    Parse error on line 1 of section InputClass in file /etc/X11/xorg.conf
    The Section keyword requires a quoted string to follow it.
    (EE) Problem parsing the config file
    (EE) Error parsing the config file
    Fatal server error:
    no screens found

    Is it possible to override this (Ubuntu 10.04)?

    (WW) intel(0): VideoRam configuration found, which is no longer recommended.
    (II) intel(0): Continuing with default 0kB VideoRam instead of 130560 kB.
    (II) intel(0): [DRI2] Setup complete
    (**) intel(0): Kernel mode setting active, disabling FBC.
    (**) intel(0): Framebuffer compression disabled
    (**) intel(0): Tiling enabled
    (**) intel(0): SwapBuffers wait enabled
    (**) intel(0): VideoRam: 131072 KB

    [Reply]

  15. I’m not sure this workaround is valid anymore in Ubuntu Lucid Lynx 10.04.

    I have to agree with RMY that VideoRam seems to be ignored as is AccelMethod in xorg.conf. The log shows it ignores the options needed to fix this problem.

    Version:
    ========
    X.Org X Server 1.7.6
    Release Date: 2010-03-17
    X Protocol Version 11, Revision 0
    Build Operating System: Linux 2.6.24-25-server i686 Ubuntu
    Current Operating System: Linux lucid 2.6.32-22-generic #36-Ubuntu SMP Thu Jun 3 22:02:19 UTC 2010 i686

    Xorg.0.log
    ==========
    (==) Depth 24 pixmap format is 32 bpp
    (WW) intel(0): VideoRam configuration found, which is no longer recommended.
    (II) intel(0): Continuing with default 0kB VideoRam instead of 130560 kB.
    (**) intel(0): Framebuffer compression disabled
    (**) intel(0): Tiling enabled
    (**) intel(0): SwapBuffers wait enabled
    (**) intel(0): VideoRam: 131072 KB
    (II) intel(0): Attempting memory allocation with tiled buffers.
    (II) intel(0): Tiled allocation successful.
    (II) UXA(0): Driver registered support for the following operations:
    (II) solid
    (II) copy
    (II) composite (RENDER acceleration)
    (==) intel(0): Backing store disabled
    (==) intel(0): Silken mouse enabled
    (II) intel(0): Initializing HW Cursor
    (II) intel(0): No memory allocations
    (II) intel(0): RandR 1.2 enabled, ignore the following RandR disabled message.
    (==) intel(0): DPMS enabled
    (==) intel(0): Intel XvMC decoder disabled
    (II) intel(0): Set up overlay video
    (II) intel(0): direct rendering: Disabled
    (WW) intel(0): Option “AccelMethod” is not used
    (–) RandR disabled

    My xorg.conf (device part)
    ==========================
    Section “Device”
    Option “DRI” “off” # []
    Option “AccelMethod” “UXA”
    VideoRam 130560
    Identifier “Card0″
    Driver “intel”
    VendorName “Intel Corporation”
    BoardName “82845G/GL[Brookdale-G]/GE Chipset Integrated Graphics Device”
    BusID “PCI:0:2:0″
    EndSection

    I think I’ll just have to switch the driver to “vesa” and wait for a patch.

    Refs:
    =====
    https://wiki.ubuntu.com/X/Bugs/Lucidi8xxFreezes

    [Reply]

  16. This solution is great
    worked with Fujitsu T4010 on
    -nn | grep VGA00:02.0
    VGA compatible controller [0300]: Intel Corporation 82852/855GM Integrated Graphics Device [8086:3582] (rev 02)
    with Lucid
    on
    uname -a
    Linux laptop 2.6.34-020634-generic #020634 SMP Mon May 17 20:34:55 UTC 2010 i686 GNU/Linux

    Stable, and with 3D
    Thanks again

    [Reply]

  17. I think I solved my dilemma. in my /etc/X11/Xorg.conf.seven different config files, I had no file that just said Xorg.conf. So I created one with “sudo gedit /etc/X11/xorg.conf.” I wasn’t sure what to put in it so I followed MARTeck’s advice and copyed the contents of Xorg.conf.failsafe file. I saved the Xorg.conf. file and then ran “sudo dpkg-reconfigure -phigh xserver-xorg” Works like a champ. Thanks for all the information already presented at this sight.

    [Reply]

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