Slackware Installation Guide

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First, note that I don't like kernel 2.4, and don't use it. Therefore this FAQ will for the most part assume you've updated your kernels along with the rest of us. (By default, Slackware 10.2 ships with 2.4.30). This shouldn't cause any descrepencies, as fglrx will work with a 2.4 or 2.6 kernel; however, if you can't get acceleration on the older kernel series, my suggestion is to update! My own reasons for doing so are mainly stability related; having relatively modern hardware, the previous-gen kernel just doesn't like my computer very much. But now I digress...let's get to it.

First and foremost; check [www.linuxpackages.net]. In theory, they have a man there who beta-tests and packages flgrx for Slackware. In practice, fglrx hasn't been updated on that site, as of this writing (11/12/05), since Slackware 10.1 and fglrx 8.16. Still, there's always the off-chance that the slacker (pun not intended...okay, maybe it was intended just a little bit) has updated them; so check there first, and use them if they are up-to-date. They can be installed quite simply.

installpkg fglrx*.tgz

Now follow the below procedure.

Please keep in mind, you'll need your kernel source and kernel headers installed. So if you're like me and update your kernel to a custom 2.6 monster, then you're fine. If you get a pre-built one (anything from the Slackware site, or anything that comes with a default slackware install), then you're going to have to download the corresponding source code. Version numbers must match exactly; also, compiler versions (gcc) must also match (and unless you've upgraded to gcc-3.4, they will!). Note that unless you compiled your own custom kernel, you'll also need the kernel headers package(these version numbers do NOT have to match anything in particular) from the Slackware website. They can come in 2.4 or 2.6 flavor, it doesn't matter so long as you have one or the other.

So, assuming you've got the relevant file from the ATI site, let's install this sucker.

rpm2targz fglrx*.rpm tar -xvzf fglrx*.tar.gz -C / cd /lib/modules/fglrx/build_mod sh make.sh sh ../make_install.sh fglrxconfig reboot

After that, you're golden. Or should be, at least. Verify you've got hardware rendering by typing in:

fglrxinfo

If it says yes, and the OpenGL version string is ATI and NOT Mesa, then you're good. If not, well, follow the above procedure again and pay attention this time. :p Ok, you probably did follow the procedure verbatim, so something else is the matter. I'll cover troubleshooting at a later date; for now, google it. The instructions for installing the ATI driver across various distrobutions are surprisingly uniform, with most of the variations going on in the way certain distros package their files, what they include in a default installation, and where they put things. So, good luck with your wanderings, Slacker!