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Old 3rd April 2014
guitarfreak guitarfreak is offline
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Default A question about DragonFlyBSD and NVIDIA

Hello all, this is my first post so I'm hoping I put this in the right forum. Anyway, I am a Linux user looking to switch to either DragonFlyBSD or OpenBSD; I have played with FreeBSD in the past but have decided I would rather go with a different option. Here is the problem, though; my video card is an NVIDIA GTX 550 Ti. The reason I bought this card two years ago is that NVIDIA's proprietary driver for Linux and FreeBSD is quite good, and everyone on the FreeBSD forums and over at linuxquestions.org recommend NVIDIA.

Well, after reading posts on this board, I realize how wrong I was. But until I can afford another card, I've been trying to figure out whether it is possible to use the FreeBSD NVIDIA driver on DragonFlyBSD (I know I'm going to have to go with ATI if I want decent performance on OpenBSD). I saw on phoronix that the Radeon driver had been ported to DragonFly:
In late August an open-source AMD Radeon KMS graphics driver was added to FreeBSD after being ported over from the Linux kernel; this new Radeon KMS driver will be a feature of FreeBSD 10.0. DragonFlyBSD developers have now in turn ported the FreeBSD Radeon graphics driver to their BSD distribution.

With DragonFlyBSD being derived from FreeBSD, it wasn't too much of a challenge and mostly leveraging the work done by the FreeBSD developers in porting the code from Linux. DragonFlyBSD developers though did leave out the compatibility layer for running 32-bit applications on 64-bit systems.
Searching the mailing list, here is the most recent post I found related to NVIDIA:
On 2/22/2013 22:52, rll@insightbb.com wrote:
> How do I get "pkg" installed? Sorry to be dense on this but its not in
> pkgsrc.

When you try to build any port from source, pkg is built first. You can
also built pkg by "cd /usr/dports/ports-mgmt/pkg && make install".
At that point you could install binaries if you had a repository.

> Do I need to do a rm -rf pkgsrc and get rid of pkgsrc?

/usr/pkgsrc can stay.
I'd would recommend "mv /usr/pkg /usr/pkg.moved" so the conflict
resolution isn't so drastic.

> Isn't kde4 a phone app interface? If I wanted Window 8 I'd go get a
> psychiatric evaluation first or just go blow my brains out.

xfce 4.10 might be for you then for the basic desktop.

> Too bad about nvidia. I thought dragonfly bragged about have good
> drivers for nvidia.

I'm not aware of that bragging.
So in summary, here are my questions:
1. Has anyone gotten an NVIDIA card functioning decently on DragonFlyBSD or OpenBSD with a card similar to mine? If so, could you give me some pointers, googling and digging through the mailing lists hasn't helped me much other than getting responses of "Buy an ATI card", which I plan on doing, but until then I'm stuck with this card.
2. Specifically in the case of DragonFlyBSD, given that they have ported the FreeBSD Radeon driver, does anyone know if they plan to port the NVIDIA one as well? Part of why I ask is that I dug through their github page, and found nvidia-settings, but not the FreeBSD driver itself.

Last edited by guitarfreak; 3rd April 2014 at 11:53 AM.
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