After I got the Linux box all set, I tried out the Xgl / Compiz stuff to see what the desktop would look like. It takes a bunch of steps since this stuff is still too new for the Linux/X world, but I got it working.
This isn’t Xgl related, but important. Gnome copies most of the Windows shortcuts. This is really nice. Gnome also has a lot of configurability. I’m pretty sure you can tweak and tweak forever with this window manager. The fonts might actually be anti-aliased.
The effects all worked and it is quite impressive. I even showed my kids and they were awed. There is something to be said for the ability to do something with computer visualization that just looks cool.
What didn’t work: The ATI drivers have some issues. I turned on vsync to get rid of the tearing. No joy. 3. Do the Ctrl-Alt-Backspace to restart the X server This just isn’t a priority for the Linux community at this time. You can bet your ass that stuff like that won’t be in Vista (and was never in Mac OS X)
I also got this error when trying to run my session from a clean boot.
compiz.real: Support for non power of two textures missing
compiz.real: Failed to manage screen: 0
compiz.real: No managable screens found on display :1.0
I could get around this with a painful set of steps.
1. Turn ‘dri’ back on in the Xorg.conf
2. Quit to GDM.
3. Do the Ctrl-Alt-Backspace to restart the X server
4. Start a non-Xgl session
5. Turn the ‘dri’ back off in the Xorg.conf
6. Quit to GDM
7. Do the Ctrl-Alt-Backspace to restart the X server
8. Start the Xgl session
Voila – the compiz works and the effects are all there 🙂 I’ll have to make a script to do this 🙂
I suspect that the ‘dri’ gets the GPU into the right ‘state’. Subsequent operations in Xgl then work well. In all fairness, this is all still considered BETA.
Hopefully this will help someone.