Via

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Different Unichrome family display drivers

The VIA proprietary drivers

These are considered unstable and unsecure.


The Xorg-driver

Unichrome-driver that comes with Xorg. This driver is maintained and developed by OpenChrome-community. The driver has support for most Unichrome chipsets and also accelerates 2D, 3D, Xvideo and mpeg2 decoding using XvMC.


You can install the Xorg driver with command:


pacman -S xf86-video-via


The Unichrome-driver

Another driver with the development focus on stability and clean code. Doesn't support accelerated mpeg2-decoding. May lack the support for newer Via chipsets.


You can install the unichrome driver with command:


pacman -S xf86-video-unichrome


The OpenChrome driver

Basically the Xorg driver with some experimental enhancements for the community to try out before they are commited to Xorg. Most comprehensive support for different Via chipsets. This is the way to go if you wan't to be on the bleeding edge.


You can install the OpenChrome driver with command:


pacman -S xf86-video-openchrome


Unichrome and OpenGL

OpenGL support for Via's graphic chipsets is seriously outdated. At the moment you will not be able to run more fancy applications, games or compositing desktops as the more recent OpenGL extensions are not yet supported in Unichrome 3D driver. You will be able to run simple OpenGL-applications though.


At the time of the writing of this wiki Arch-repo has libgl, unichrome-dri and mesa packages built from the Mesa 7.0.1 -branch.


wiki.openchrome.org states: "The 3D driver that complements the openchrome driver can be obtained from the DRI project. For now you should use the Mesa-6.4 branch; the last version known to work sort of reliably is Mesa-6.4.1."


If you experience X freezes or wierd behaviour when trying to run OpenGL-applications and you absolutelly must have somewhat stable OpenGL-support you should consider rebuilding libgl, unichrome-dri and mesa -packages from the Mesa 6.4.1 -branch.


If you wan't to disable OpenGL alltogether add:


disable "dri"
disable "glx"


in the module section of xorg.conf.