OS2.GURU - Panorama VESA videodriverOS2.GURU - Panorama VESA videodriver

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Panorama VESA FAQ

20100126

   Q0: Do I need Panorama VESA?
   Q0: How to query the version of Panorama VESA?
   Q1: Which driver is faster? Panorama VESA, SNAP 2D accelerated, Scitech-VESA, GENGRAD?
   Q2: Does Panorama VESA give performance increase on video adapters with Shared Memory?   
   Q3: How to enable Widescreen modes?
   Q4: Why Dive can't be accelerated in VESA driver?
   Q5: Memory requirements for Panorama VESA?
   Q6: Does Panorama support VGA, DVI connectors?
   Q7: Does Panorama use Scitech SNAP drivers, or is it standalone driver?
   Q8: Panorama requires ACPI.PSD. Can I run without ACPI.PSD? 
   Q9: Panorama VESA is generating wrong picture.
  Q10: What is Shadow buffer? 
  Q11: What is the maximum resolution/color depth and refresh rate? 
  Q12: Why no support for VESA 3.0?
  Q13: What are the restrictions/disadvantages of Panorama VESA?
  Q14: Why Panorama VESA is equipped with own GRADD.SYS?
  Q15: Please give me access to Shadow buffer. I want accelerate my application
  Q16: How to increase the performance of Panorama VESA? 
  Q17: The switch LCD / external monitor doesn't work  
  Q18: How to backup SNAP before testing Panorama VESA?     
  Q19: How to develop DIVE applications compatible with Panorama VESA?
  Q20: Can I find a driver like Panorama VESA in other OS?
  Q21: How to convince that Panorama VESA is different from SDDGRAD?
  Q22: Does Panorama VESA support output to external monitor?
  Q23: How to install Panorama VESA from eCS 2.0 CD1?         
* Q24: How to buy new LCD and video adapter?
* Q25: I upgraded motherboard BIOS, Panorama doesn't work

Q0: Do I need Panorama VESA?
A0: Panorama VESA  is recommended for:
       * ATI Radeon X1300 (R500 family) and above
       * Intel X3000 and above
       * NVidia GeForce 6200/6600 and above

       
Q0: How to query the version of Panorama VESA?
A0: Use bldlevel to query the version:
      goto x:\os2\dll
      bldlevel VBE2GRAD.dll
      bldlevel gradd.sys
Q1: Which driver is faster? Panorama VESA, SNAP 2D accelerated, Scitech-VESA, GENGRAD?
A1: SNAP 2D accelerated is faster, of course.
    If a user replaces SNAP 2D accelerated with Panorama VESA then 
    he doesn't feel differences (often).
    Panorama VESA is N times faster than Scitech-VESA on SMP.
    Panorama VESA is faster than Scitech-VESA on UNI.
    Scitech-VESA is faster than IBM GENGRAD.
     
     
Q2: Does Panorama VESA give performance increase on video adapters with Shared Memory?   
A2: The effect of Shadow buffer is smaller for such adapters. 


Q3: How to enable Widescreen modes?
A3: If no widescreen modes in the list of available modes then
     * try widescreen activators (standalone drivers which are 
         patching video BIOS) 
     * or create own driver. 
   
    
Q4: Why Dive can't be accelerated in VESA driver?
A4: Dive allows direct access to video memory. Sometimes it doesn't 
    inform the Video driver about updated areas.
    
   
Q5: Memory requirements for Panorama VESA?
A5: Shadow buffer requires shared memory in HMA, 
    Examples: 1600x1200x32 bpp = 8 Mb of RAM
    
    
Q6: Does Panorama support VGA, DVI connectors?
A6: Yes, you can attach PC to LCD via VGA or DVI. 
    Video BIOS is serving a display, Panorama VESA is working with 
    the same display via BIOS.
    * How the BIOS selects monitor? It selects a monitor by priority.
    * If your video adapter has 2 DVI connectors and you attach 2 monitors,
      the result depends on video BIOS. Usually only one monitor will work.
      In other cases you see the desktop on both monitors.

    
Q7: Does Panorama use Scitech SNAP drivers, or is it standalone driver?
A7: Panorama doesn't depend on SNAP. It's a GRADD video driver. 
    You can install it over SNAP, Scitech-VESA or IBM GENGRAD.


Q8: Panorama requires ACPI.PSD. Can I run without ACPI.PSD? 
A8: ACPI.PSD is obligatory if running on SMP kernel.

    
Q9: Panorama VESA is generating wrong picture.
A9: Fonts are not sharp as in SNAP - Run Auto-setup operation for the LCD


Q10: What is Shadow buffer?
A10: Shadow buffer = Copy of screen in RAM
     What is the advantage? No need to read video memory.
     Reading from Video memory is much slower than writing.

     
Q11: What is the maximum resolution/color depth and refresh rate? 
A11: Maximum resolutions/color depends on video BIOS of your video adapter.
     Usually, standard modes are supported, True color.
     VBE2.0 standard doesn't allow control refresh rate.

     Resolutions at more than 2048 width most likely won't work as they 
     require a dual link digital connection usually.
   
     Panorama VESA works OK:
      * 1680x1050
      * 1920x1200
    
     Panorama VESA should be tested on:
      * 1366x768
      
     This resolutions are not supported: 
      * 2560x1600  // All fonts are slightly fuzzy (though still readable).
     
     
Q12: Why no support for VESA 3.0?
A12: The manufacturers of video adapters do not test VESA 3.0,
     so no reason to support VESA 3.0.
     VESA 3.0 has useful features:
      * Protected Mode interface - relates to video modes setup
      * Refresh rates - not useful for LCD monitors
      
      
Q13: What are the restrictions/disadvantages of Panorama VESA?
A13: Disadvantages of Panorama VESA:   
       * no 2D acceleration 
       * no overlay support => slow fullscreen movies
       * no refresh rates => the driver is unusable for CRT monitors
       * requires CPU + memory
       * Widescreen is possible for ATOM BIOS and Intel only 
          (read about Panorama widescreen activator)
       * No portrait mode (rotate by 90* while copying from shadow to screen buffer)
       * no DPMS support

      
Q14: Why Panorama VESA is equipped with own GRADD.SYS?
A14: It's driver written from scratch. It is able:
       * it's 32-bit driver 
       * To process MTRR on VIA processors (not Intel and AMD only)
       * To connect to ACPI.PSD and set Write Combine on SMP computers
       * No dependence on IBM. 

       
Q15: Please give me access to Shadow buffer. I want accelerate my application
A15: We can't give you the address of the Shadow buffer, 
     a) this doesn't accelerate the application. 
     b) This binds applications to Panorama VESA
     c) This may cause new bugs.


Q16: How to increase the performance of Panorama VESA?
A16: There are some methods:
       * Disable full window dragging
       * Change True color to 32K
       * Add more RAM to PC

       
Q17: The switch LCD / external monitor doesn't work  
A17: Switch LCD/external monitor on notebooks depends on vendors of notebooks. 
     Panorama can't control this. Attach external monitor, reboot eComStation,
     you should see the desktop on both monitors. 
     Different problems may occur. Wrong color if connected via VGA.
     So try DVI output, etc.
     
       
Q18: How to backup SNAP before testing Panorama VESA?     
A18: a) Make backup of SNAP:
      * backup x:\os2\gradd.sys
      * backup x:\os2\svgadata.pmi
      * backup x:\config.sys

     b) install Panorama, test it:
        How to convince that VBE2GRAD is loaded?
          * x:\os2\install\gradd.log
            should contain: "Module VBE2GRAD loaded successfully"
          * Capabilities button should be enabled 
     
        Setup:     
          * shadow buffer is disabled by default. To enable, System setup ->
            Screen -> Capabilities button -> [X] Shadow buffer, reboot

     c) Uninstall Panorama VESA via WarpIn
     
     d) Restore saved files.

     
Q19: How to develop DIVE applications compatible with Panorama VESA?
A19: Follow the rules:
      * You should notify the video sub-system which area is updated.
        Use DiveAcquireFrameBuffer/DiveDeacquireFrameBuffer
        (no need to make this calls if using DiveBlitImage)
        

Q20: Can I find a driver like Panorama VESA in other OS?
A20: Windows XP has own VESA driver. XFree/XOrg VESA driver (with shadow buffer)

        
Q21: How to convince that Panorama VESA is different from SDDGRAD?
A21: Open http://www.lenta.ru
   Press PgDn and don't release. Release the button. Scrolling stops immediately.
   If boot with SDDGRAD or GENGRAD then 
   when you release PgDn, the scrolling continues for 0.1 .. 1 seconds.
   This demonstrates that the drawing is slower. 
   
   
Q22: Does Panorama VESA support output to external monitor?
A22: All depends on video BIOS.  We tested some configurations. 
      * ATI X1600 + Panorama VESA connected to other monitor via DVI - OK
      * if you have cheap LCD then troubles may occur (wrong colors, etc)
      
     all depends on video BIOS of video adapter - it makes decisions which 
     output to use. 
     

Q23: How to install Panorama VESA from eCS 2.0 CD1?       
A23: Goto:
     \cid\server\panorama
     run setup gen

     eComStation 2.0 GA: run the video setup wizard, it will take care of 
     all issues. (vidwzrd.exe from commandline) 
     
     C-ENG-PANORAMA-1211, 2010/01/26
     

Q24: How to buy new LCD and video adapter?
A24: We are confident that adapter X will work with Panorama VESA 
     (and widescreen activator, check the list of tested cards).

     Some problems may occur:
      * auto-setup screen may fail
      * distortion of picture
      * etc.

     What to do?
      * don't buy cheap LCD monitor
      * buy video-card with money-back. if adapter doesn't work 
         properly then exchange it to other model.

     How to select video adapter? 
       RUS: http://ru.ecomstation.ru/showarticle.php?id=208

         
Q25: I upgraded motherboard BIOS, Panorama doesn't work
A25: Yes, BIOS may influence on video card.

         

 



 

 
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