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3D Hardware acceleration

Shelley V. Adams edited this page May 10, 2016 · 11 revisions

All Chromebooks provide some 3D hardware acceleration in Chrome OS. However, experience with crouton chroot varies depending on the release chosen and the type of hardware.

Haswell/Bay Trail-based Chromebooks

(e.g. Acer C720 peppy, ASUS Chromebook C200 squawks)

Haswell/Bay Trail-based Chromebooks require updated drivers to support 3D acceleration.

Working releases:

  • Ubuntu 12.04 (precise): crouton automatically install backported drivers (#890).
  • Ubuntu >=13.10 onwards (saucy/trusty).
  • Debian jessie/sid

Releases that do not work:

  • Debian wheezy: There are no backported drivers provided by Debian, so this will probably never be supported.
  • kali: Based on wheezy, so no easy fix is available.

Intel-based Chromebooks on kernel 3.4

(e.g. Acer C710 parrot; Cr-48 x86-mario is an exception, it works accross the board, as it uses a much older chip: i915 driver)

OpenGL mesa libraries version >=9 require kernel >=3.6 to work on i965-based hardware (e.g. Sandy/Ivy Bridge). crouton includes a fix to use old mesa libraries on recent Ubuntu releases.

Working releases:

  • Ubuntu 12.04 (precise)
  • Ubuntu >=13.10 onwards (saucy/trusty): crouton automatically downgrades mesa libraries (#913).
  • Debian wheezy, and kali

Releases that do not work:

Chromebook Pixel

Should work fine on all releases (it does not use kernel 3.4, nor is Haswell-based).

ARM-based Chromebooks

No support at all. Also, the hardware only supports OpenGL ES.

Tools to check hardware acceleration support

Figure out the PCI id of the video device (see PCI id database):

cat /sys/class/graphics/fb0/device/vendor
cat /sys/class/graphics/fb0/device/device

Check if hardware acceleration works:

  • glxinfo: OpenGL vendor string should be Intel on Intel hardware (not VMWare/llvmpipe)
  • xdriinfo: No error
  • glxgears -info: Gears are displayed and running

Output on test machines.

Note: trusty users will find glxinfo and glxgears in the mesa-utils package.

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