Posts Tagged ‘Compiz


Have a merry x-mas… compiz style

One of the cooler, lesser-known plugins for Compiz, xglsnow, was sadly left in the dust with the inclusion of Compiz Fusion into Ubuntu 7.10. That doesn’t mean, however, you can’t still get it working in time for the holiday season! Check out the video below to see the plugin in action.

Here is a screenshot of what it looks like on my machine:

screenshot of xglsnow running on my desktop

Note: This tutorial assumes that you have Compiz or Compiz fusion setup already. If you don’t, however, try searching the forums– there is a huge number of guides floating around on getting Compiz running for different graphics cards.

Ready? Here goes…

I. Installing xglsnow

First, you need to install the necessary packages to build the plugin. Open up a console (alt+F2 -> “gnome-terminal”),
and type:

sudo apt-get install compiz-bcop compiz-dev build-essential libxcomposite-dev libpng12-dev libsm-dev libxrandr-dev libxdamage-dev libxinerama-dev libstartup-notification0-dev libgconf2-dev librsvg2-dev libdbus-1-dev libdbus-glib-1-dev libgnome-desktop-dev x11proto-scrnsaver-dev libxss-dev libxslt1-dev libtool

Create a directory in your home folder to install the plugin to:

mkdir -p ~/compiz/

Download xglsnow and extract it to the directory you just created:

Finally, navigate to the directory, compile and install:

cd ~/compiz/snow

make install

Now you just need to install some textures, configure xgl, and you’re done! :)

*The above steps are based off a tutorial by Scott at the Compiz Fusion forums. Thanks!

II. Adding textures

The above tarball doesn’t include any snow textures, so by default all you would see are some floating white blocks… not very pretty… The package from the xglsnow homepage, however, includes a texture which looks pretty nice. To set it up, go to the xglsnow project homepage and download xglsnow-0.2.0.tar.gz. Extract the files, and copy the file “snowflake2.png” to any location you would like, e.g. ~/.compiz/images or /usr/share/images:

tar -xf xglsnow-0.2.0.tar.gz

cd xglsnow-0.2.0/

mkdir ~/.compiz/images

mv snowflake2.png ~/.compiz/images

If you haven’t already, restart Compiz to load the new plugin (alt+F2 -> “compiz –replace”) and run the Compiz settings manager: alt+F2 -> “ccsm”. Find the “Snow” plugin and check the box to the left of it to enable it.

Compiz settings manager

Now click on the plugin’s name to modify its settings. Next go to “Textures” -> “add” -> “browse” (click the folder icon). Navigate to the location where you saved the texture from above and hit “okay.”

Compiz settings manager (snow configuration)

All done!

Press “Super + F3″ to start xgl snow. If you don’t see anything, check to make sure the the PNG plugin for compiz is enabled, and that the hotkey for xglsnow is in fact “super + F3.”

If you want to install some different snow textures, try the Snowflakes pack on Gnome-look.

III. Wallpapers

Finally, if you want to find some wintry wallpapers to go along with your new snow-covered desktop, take a look at Blue Christmas
from digital blasphemy (that is the one in the screenshot above). Gnome-art has a nice picture of a winter landscape in Alsace, France You can also find some winter wallpapers at Gnome-look and Kde-look.
Try searching for “winter” or “snow.”

That’s all!

Feel free to write any suggestions, or a link to a screenshot of your own holiday desktop :)


Compiz Fusion with ATI Radeon X800 GTO on Ubuntu Gusty

After much weeping and gnashing of teeth, I have finally gotten Compiz Fusion to run after upgrading to Ubuntu 7.10, and it looks very sharp.


Compiz Fusion running on Ubuntu 7.10 with XGL.

As anyone else who owns an ATI card can attest, getting OpenGL working in Ubuntu is often no small task. After the initial upgrade to 7.10, I was not surprised to find that Ubuntu was using the Vesa (2d) graphics drivers. My first thought was to try using the proprietary drivers manager version of the ATI drivers, xorg-driver-fglrx (ATI’s non-open-source 3d drivers for linux). This is the version of the driver that is installed if you click “enable” in Ubuntu’s proprietary drivers manager. After enabling the drivers, and playing around with xorg.conf settings some, I still was having no luck getting OpenGL working and was getting the standard error messages:

ubuntu-desktop:~$ fglrxinfo
display: :0.0 screen: 0
OpenGL vendor string: Mesa project:
OpenGL renderer string: Mesa GLX Indirect
OpenGL version string: 1.2 (1.5 Mesa 6.4.1)

At this point I decided to try the new 8.42.3 ATI drivers which are purported to support AIGLX, and thus should be able to work without XGL. Following a guide I found on via the forums, I was able to install the 8.42.3 drivers without too much trouble. Unfortunately however, I still had no luck getting OpenGL to work. I tried several combinations of xorg.conf settings, switching Composition and AIGLX on and off, but to no avail.

So I decided to uninstall the new driver, and wait and pray that when the newer drivers were uploaded to the main repos, it would work for me. By a stroke of luck however, I noticed that after removing the new driver, and reloading the default proprietary-driver-manager version, OpenGL was now working! I reinstalled xserver, rebooted, and Voila!– Working Compiz Fusion!

ubuntu-desktop:~$ fglrxinfo
display: :0.0 screen: 0
OpenGL vendor string: ATI Technologies Inc.
OpenGL renderer string: RADEON X800 GTO
OpenGL version string: 2.0.6473 (8.37.6)

So what is the difference between now and after the initial upgrade? The Screen & Graphics manager is set to use the “ati” drivers instead of “fglrx!” Also, I enabled the “Composite” extension in xorg.conf (See below). Everything else is the same:

gusty restricted drivers manager

Using the default restricted drivers manager ATI drivers.

Gusty screen and graphics preferences

Screen and graphics preferences

Even though Gusty is set to use the “ati” driver version, xorg.conf is still set to use fglrx, and running compiz in the terminal confirms that the fglrx drivers are being used.

ubuntu-desktop:~$ compiz
compiz compiz.real
ubuntu-desktop:~$ more compiz
compiz: No such file or directory
ubuntu-desktop:~$ compiz –version
Checking for Xgl: present.
Checking for nVidia: not present.
Checking for Xgl: present.
Enabling Xgl with fglrx ATi drivers…
Starting emerald
compiz 0.6.1

Why setting the screen and graphics preferences driver to “fglrx” breaks fglrx is beyond me, but in any case, at least it is working now. In case anyone else would like to see, the contents of my xorg.conf file are as below:

Section "ServerLayout"

# Uncomment if you have a wacom tablet
# InputDevice "stylus" "SendCoreEvents"
# InputDevice "cursor" "SendCoreEvents"
# InputDevice "eraser" "SendCoreEvents"
Identifier "Default Layout"
Screen 0 "aticonfig-Screen[0]" 0 0
InputDevice "Generic Keyboard"
InputDevice "Configured Mouse"

Section "Files"

Section "Module"
Load "bitmap"
Load "extmod"
Load "freetype"
Load "int10"
Load "vbe"
Load "glx"
Load "dbe"
Load "dri"
Load "v4l"

Section "InputDevice"
Identifier "Generic Keyboard"
Driver "kbd"
Option "CoreKeyboard"
Option "XkbRules" "xorg"
Option "XkbModel" "pc104"
Option "XkbLayout" "us"
Option "XkbOptions" "altwin:meta_win"

Section "InputDevice"
Identifier "Configured Mouse"
Driver "mouse"
Option "CorePointer"
Option "Device" "/dev/input/mice"
Option "Protocol" "ImPS/2"
Option "ZAxisMapping" "4 5"
Option "Emulate3Buttons" "true"

Section "InputDevice"
Identifier "stylus"
Driver "wacom"
Option "Device" "/dev/input/wacom"
Option "Type" "stylus"
Option "ForceDevice" "ISDV4"# Tablet PC ONLY

Section "InputDevice"
Identifier "eraser"
Driver "wacom"
Option "Device" "/dev/input/wacom"
Option "Type" "eraser"
Option "ForceDevice" "ISDV4"# Tablet PC ONLY

Section "InputDevice"
Identifier "cursor"
Driver "wacom"
Option "Device" "/dev/input/wacom"
Option "Type" "cursor"
Option "ForceDevice" "ISDV4"# Tablet PC ONLY

Section "Monitor"
Identifier "aticonfig-Monitor[0]"
Option "VendorName" "ATI Proprietary Driver"
Option "ModelName" "Generic Autodetecting Monitor"
Option "DPMS" "true"

Section "Device"
Identifier "aticonfig-Device[0]"
Driver "fglrx"

Section "Screen"
Identifier "aticonfig-Screen[0]"
Device "aticonfig-Device[0]"
Monitor "aticonfig-Monitor[0]"
DefaultDepth 24
SubSection "Display"
Viewport 0 0
Depth 24

Section "Extensions"
Option "Composite" "enable"

Hopefully compiz will not break again with the next update of xorg-driver-fglrx. If so, you may see another “Compiz Fusion on Gusty” post in the weeks to come.


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