Those of you who use the Linux framebuffer and for some reason can’t use a chipset specific driver such as nvidiafb might be familiar with a project called ‘vesafb-tng’ that I started a few years ago.
vesafb-tng is a generic framebuffer driver for VBE 2.0 compliant video adapters. It removes most of the limitations imposed by vesafb, such as the awkward way of setting video modes (vga=xxx) or the lack of support for mode switching. There are two main problems with vesafb-tng:
- it’s a rather ugly hack,
- it works only on x86.
uvesafb, aka “vesafb-tng done right”, fixes these two problems. It uses a userspace daemon to run x86 Video BIOS calls, which makes the driver a lot cleaner and perhaps more importantly, makes it possible to use the driver on non-x86 systems.
uvesafb is still in alpha stage. It currently supports x86 and amd64 and has been tested with a few nVidia cards. If you would like to test it out, check the project webpage and follow the installation instructions. Bug reports and success stories are welcome :)