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Chris M
Status: Contributor
Joined: 11 Aug 2013
Posts: 65
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I bit the bullet on my debian machine, and installed the latest weekly build debian testing xfce. You were right. It was very easy.

When installing with the graphical interface, it gave me the option to install linux-image-amd64 or the linux-image-3.10-3-amd64 for boot up. The 1st option was the linux-image-amd64 and the 2nd was the linux-image-3.10-3-amd64. I chose linux-image-3.10-3-amd64, which made "sense" at the time, but that might have been the wrong choice.

Unfortunately, the debian xfce iso is really based on gnome with an XFCE session, and my first boot up went into gnome fallback mode due to lack of firmware (and perhaps drivers).

So I re-booted into an XFCE session with bad graphics, and then installed firmware. Then I ran smxi to shut down the desktop, and then exited to a terminal (in root) and ran sgfxi:

:: Code ::
=========================================================
START sgfxi LOGGING:
=========================================================
Script started: 2013-11-03-00:49:45
Video Card Information: Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. [AMD/ATI] Turks XT [Radeon HD 6670/7670]
Video Card Type: 1002
Video Card Number: 6758
Xorg Version: 1.14
Installing driver to kernel: 3.10-3-amd64
sgfxi script version: 4.21.07
sgfxi start options:  -B
SYSTEM_BASE: debian
SYSTEM_CODENAME: testing
DISTRIB_CODENAME: testing
DISTRIB_ID: debian
DISTRIB_RELEASE:
SIS: debian-testing-64
BITS: 64
FG_DISTRIB_CODENAME: sid
FG_DISTRIB_ID: Debian
APT_TYPE: apt-get
=========================================================
X is Running: false
Current Runlevel: 2
Connection is live (0=true): 0
=========================================================
INSTALL_TO_KERNEL:
KERNEL_FULL: 3.10-3-amd64
KERNEL_BASE: 3
KERNEL_NUMBER: 3.10
KERNEL_MATH: 10
B_IS_XEN: true
Function: create_x_conf - Primary: Start
  xorg is present with xorg.conf file
Function: create_x_conf - Primary: End
Function: check_package_manager_updated - Utility: Start
  sizeWorking: 21
Function: check_package_manager_updated - Utility: End
Function: check_supported_driver - Utility: Start
Function: check_supported_driver - Utility: End
Function: set_cpu_data - Utility: Start
  BITS: 64 - arch: amd64
Function: set_cpu_data - Utility: End
Function: set_driver_install_version - Primary: Start
Function: check_supported_driver - Utility: Start
  Args: last-check
Function: check_supported_driver - Utility: End
Function: print_information_continue - Utility: Start
  Args: info You are using the following options:
 -B - Use Beta Driver (nVidia only. Only if available)

Function: print_information_continue - Utility: End
Function: print_information_continue - Utility: Start
  Args: standard The graphics installer will be installing the fglrx driver: 13.11 (beta6)
This is the latest fglrx Beta driver for your card type.

Function: check_ia32_libs - Utility: Start
  Args: test
Function: check_ia32_libs - Utility: End
Function: print_information_continue - Utility: End
  Installing this driver: 13.11 (beta6)
Function: set_driver_install_version - Primary: End
Function: driver_support_tests - Utility: Start
  Args: supported-driver
Function: driver_support_tests - Utility: End
Function: check_kernel_headers - Utility: Start
Function: check_package_status - Utility: Start
  Args: linux-headers-3.10-3-amd64 i
  Package Version: 3.10.11-1
Function: check_package_status - Utility: End
Function: check_package_status - Utility: Start
  Args: linux-headers-3.10-3-amd64 c
  Package Version: 3.10.11-1
Function: check_package_status - Utility: End
  headerName: linux-headers-3.10-3-amd64
headerInstalled: 3.10.11-1
headerAvailable: 3.10.11-1
headerFile:
Function: check_kernel_headers - Utility: End
Function: check_run_package_tools - Primary: Start
Function: check_run_package_tools - Primary: End
Function: set_download_info - Primary: Start
  download url: http://www2.ati.com/drivers/beta/ - driver file: amd-catalyst-13.11-beta6-linux-x86.x86_64
Function: set_download_info - Primary: End
Function: download_extract_driver - Primary: Start
  Args: http://www2.ati.com/drivers/beta/ amd-catalyst-13.11-beta6-linux-x86.x86_64
Function: pre_extract_clean_set_up - Utility: Start
  Args: amd-catalyst-13.11-beta6-linux-x86.x86_64
Function: pre_extract_clean_set_up - Utility: End
Creating directory fglrx-install-13.11
Verifying archive integrity... All good.
Uncompressing AMD Catalyst(TM) Proprietary Driver-13.25.18...........................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
Function: download_extract_driver - Primary: End
  Function: set_install_directory - set to: /usr/src/sgfxi-downloads/fglrx-install-13.11
Function: run_driver_patches - Primary: Start
Function: run_driver_patches - Primary: End
Function: x_start_stop_master - Primary: Start
  Args: stop
Function: start_stop_x - Utility: Start
  Args: stop
  default runlevel: 2
current runlevel: 2
  dmanCommand: service lightdm stop
Function: x_is_running - Utility: Start
  xIsRunning: false
Function: x_is_running - Utility: End
Function: start_stop_x - Utility: End
Function: x_start_stop_master - Primary: End
Function: check_driver_install_tools - Primary: Start
Function: check_package_status - Utility: Start
  Args: module-assistant i
  Package Version:
Function: check_package_status - Utility: End
Function: check_package_status - Utility: Start
  Args: module-assistant c
  Package Version: 0.11.6
Function: check_package_status - Utility: End
Function: install_package - Utility: Start
  Args: module-assistant
Function: update_package_manager - Utility: Start
  Args: update
  Update apt-get successful
Function: update_package_manager - Utility: End
  Install command for apt-get: install - Extra args:
Function: install_package - Utility: End
Function: check_package_status - Utility: Start
  Args: build-essential i
  Package Version:
Function: check_package_status - Utility: End
Function: check_package_status - Utility: Start
  Args: build-essential c
  Package Version: 11.6
Function: check_package_status - Utility: End
Function: install_package - Utility: Start
  Args: build-essential
Function: update_package_manager - Utility: Start
  Args: update
Function: update_package_manager - Utility: End
  Install command for apt-get: install - Extra args:
Function: install_package - Utility: End
Function: check_package_status - Utility: Start
  Args: debhelper i
  Package Version:
Function: check_package_status - Utility: End
Function: check_package_status - Utility: Start
  Args: debhelper c
  Package Version: 9.20130921
Function: check_package_status - Utility: End
Function: install_package - Utility: Start
  Args: debhelper
Function: update_package_manager - Utility: Start
  Args: update
Function: update_package_manager - Utility: End
  Install command for apt-get: install - Extra args:
Function: install_package - Utility: End
Function: check_package_status - Utility: Start
  Args: dpkg-cross i
  Package Version:
Function: check_package_status - Utility: End
Function: check_package_status - Utility: Start
  Args: libstdc++5 i
  Package Version:
Function: check_package_status - Utility: End
Function: check_package_status - Utility: Start
  Args: libstdc++5 c
  Package Version: 1:3.3.6-25
Function: check_package_status - Utility: End
Function: install_package - Utility: Start
  Args: libstdc++5
Function: update_package_manager - Utility: Start
  Args: update
Function: update_package_manager - Utility: End
  Install command for apt-get: install - Extra args:
Function: install_package - Utility: End
Function: check_package_status - Utility: Start
  Args: libstdc++6 i
  Package Version: 4.8.2-1
Function: check_package_status - Utility: End
Function: check_package_status - Utility: Start
  Args: unzip i
  Package Version: 6.0-10
Function: check_package_status - Utility: End
Function: check_driver_install_tools - Primary: End
Function: prep_install - Primary: Start
Function: install_package - Utility: Start
  Args: libgl1-mesa-glx reinstall
Function: update_package_manager - Utility: Start
  Args: update
Function: update_package_manager - Utility: End
Function: check_package_status - Utility: Start
  Args: libgl1-mesa-glx i
  Package Version: 9.2.2-1
Function: check_package_status - Utility: End
  Install command for apt-get: install - Extra args:  --reinstall
Function: install_package - Utility: End
Function: prep_install - Primary: End
Function: preinstall_cleanup - Primary: Start
  Pre Remove: nvidia.ko files:

Function: list_installed_packages - Utility: Start
  Args: nvidia (libkwinnvidiahack|libgl1-nvidia-glx-ia32|libgl1-nvidia-glx:386|modalias|libvdpau|nvidia-bl-dkms|nvidia-cg-toolkit)
  packageList:
Function: list_installed_packages - Utility: End
  Post Purge/Remove: nvidia.ko files:

Function: remove_module - Primary: Start
  Args: nvidia
  operation outcome: unset
Function: remove_module - Primary: End
Function: list_installed_packages - Utility: Start
  Args: fglrx modalias
  packageList:
Function: list_installed_packages - Utility: End
Function: remove_module - Primary: Start
  Args: fglrx
  operation outcome: unset
Function: remove_module - Primary: End
Function: clean_dkms - Primary: Start
Function: clean_dkms - Primary: End
Function: preinstall_cleanup - Primary: End
Function: run_driver_installer - Primary: Start
  driver: 13.11
  direct fglrx install - no debs: options: 13.11 --install
Function: run_driver_installer - Primary: End
Function: post_installer_steps - Primary: Start
Function: clean_up_fglrx_junk - Utility: Start
Function: clean_up_fglrx_junk - Utility: End
Function: post_installer_steps - Primary: End
Function: update_xorg - Primary: Start
  xorg.conf was backed up to: /etc/X11/xorg.conf-bu-2013-11-03-00:51:23
Function: create_section_device - Utility: Start
Function: create_section_device - Utility: End
Function: create_driver_entry - Utility: Start
Function: create_driver_entry - Utility: End
Function: update_xorgconf_driver_version - Utility: Start
Function: update_xorgconf_driver_version - Utility: End
Function: clear_prep_xorg - Utility: Start
Function: clear_prep_xorg - Utility: End
Function: check_extensions - Utility: Start
Function: create_section_extensions - Utility: Start
Function: create_section_extensions - Utility: End
Function: check_extensions - Utility: End
Function: remove_modelines - Utility: Start
Function: remove_modelines - Utility: End
Function: update_xorg - Primary: End
Function: final_install_steps - Primary: Start
Function: process_xvmc - Utility: Start
Function: process_xvmc - Utility: End
Function: add_module - Primary: Start
  Args: fglrx
  operation outcome: added
Function: add_module - Primary: End
dpkg: warning: ignoring request to remove fglrx-kernel-src which isn't installed
Function: remove_module - Primary: Start
  Args: radeon
  operation outcome: unset
Function: set_modesetting_off - Primary: End
Function: add_grub_nomodeset_blacklist_item - Utility: Start
  Args: radeon
Function: get_active_grub_files - Utility: Start
  grub files:  /boot/grub/grub.cfg /etc/default/grub
Function: get_active_grub_files - Utility: End
  /boot/grub/grub.cfg file updated to add radeon nomodeset: /boot/grub/grub.cfg /etc/default/grub
  File /etc/default/grub updated to add radeon nomodeset: /etc/default/grub
  File /etc/default/grub updated to add radeon radeon.modeset=0: /etc/default/grub
Function: add_grub_nomodeset_blacklist_item - Utility: End
Function: add_modprobe_d_blacklist_item - Utility: Start
  Args: radeon
Function: add_modprobe_d_blacklist_item - Utility: End
Function: update_initramfs - Primary: Start
  Args: remove-radeon
Function: update_initramfs - Primary: End
Function: set_modesetting_off - Primary: Start
  Args: radeon unset
Function: remove_module - Primary: End
Function: remove_module - Primary: Start
  Args: drm
FATAL: Module drm is in use.
  operation outcome: failed
Function: remove_module - Primary: End
Function: final_install_steps - Primary: End
Function: x_start_stop_master - Primary: Start
  Args: start
Function: start_x_question - Primary: Start
  Final Step: quit


I got the same FATAL: Module drm is in use.
operation outcome: failed
message.

For a debian testing installation, I was surprised that linux-headers (multiple files) were not installed, because with testing, I'm pretty sure you need them to roll along with kernel upgrades, so perhaps choosing an initial install of linux-image-amd64, instead of linux-image-3.10-3-amd64, would have been the better move? I don't know.

Even though I got the FATAL: Module drm is in use - operation outcome: failed message, the driver did install. So functionally, there's no real problem. Again, I'm not sure if selecting the "wrong kernel" created the problem, but I kind of wish that I had selected the linux-image-amd64 and had installed dkms before running sgfxi.

Also, after installing the ATI beta driver, I rebooted. I did not go directly into the desktop.

FWIW.
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techAdmin
Status: Site Admin
Joined: 26 Sep 2003
Posts: 4076
Location: East Coast, West Coast? I know it's one of them.
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It's cleaner to install alternate desktops with smxi, I never use debian desktop metapackages because for some reason they believe a metapackage should install every package remotely related to that desktop known to man. Also, default debian apt configuration installs 'recommends', which is almost always a bad thing because it bloats your system long term.

smxi bypasses these defaults and installs basically what you need to get the system running, though of course I add packages to the lists as I discover an actual need for that particular app or feature.

The drm doesn't matter, if the installer installs fglrx, it's fine. That may be a legacy thing from sgfxi, I really can't say, I don't see that error, I think anyway.

Installind debian is not hard, it's just a touch more technically oriented than derived distros, that's the only difference. I don't use debian installers to install my desktops, just the very basic system, then I reboot, tweak a few things, and create the install using smxi, which is all known components based on my experience of what is of use vs whatever standard debian uses, which appears at the moment to be: throw everything imaginable into the install and let the user worry about it.
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Chris M
Status: Contributor
Joined: 11 Aug 2013
Posts: 65
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h2, I installed a base linux using the same debian-testing-amd64-xfce-CD-1.iso on a netbook. It took a couple of tries (there are a lot of options), but I nailed it down, and plan to do the same on my main debian box.

The base install + adding just the needed XFCE DE and utilities shaved off a gig of BS. And that 3 year old netbook with an Atom proc and 2 gigs of ram with a 64 bit OS is damn quick.

Thanks for the advice on a minimal install. It took a while to install and tweak, but it will be well worth it over the long haul.
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