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EPIA XFree86 TV-Out Driver
An alternative video driver for VIA EPIA motherboards.


Version 0.1 released 20/12/2002

PLEASE NOTE - while this page is still here in the hope that the driver might continue to be useful for some people, I no longer have easy access to the neccesary hardware to develop it any further.

WARNING:
This is highly experimental software - it is probably chock full of bugs, and due to its hardware-hitting nature, must be run as 'root'.  You use this software entirely at your own risk - I will not be held responsible for any damage to your system or loss of data resulting from crashes caused by this driver.


Background
VIA's EPIA boards include a TV encoder capable of displaying several different resolutions, and filling the screen to varying degrees with overscan control.
VIA have shown an encouraging level of enlightenment with regard to producing an XFree86 driver for this encoder, and have bowed to public pressure in releasing its source code.  The advantage of such a release is that others can learn from it and improve it.  That's what I have attempted to do with this driver.


What does it do?
The archive available for download below contains a modified Trident XFree86 driver, specifically for machines using the VT8601 NorthBridge VT1621 TV Encoder.  Such machines include the EPIA-5000, EPIA-8000, Jetway B860T and Lex Light.

This driver contains the following improvements over VIA's version:

What doesn't it do?
This driver includes no support whatever for the new EPIA-M series of motherboards - these have a completely difference chipset (albeit a similar TV Encoder), and source for its XFree86 driver doesn't yet appear to be available.
Only the VIA VT1621 TV Encoder is supported, unlike VIA's driver, which also supports the CH7005C TV Encoder


Known problems:
In TV-Out mode, video overlays still don't always line up with the window - I am investigating ways of fixing this without just having a huge table of corrections.


Installation:
The XFree86 driver is provided both as source and binary.  Building the Trident driver from source requires a full XFree86 source tree, so you're probably better off trying to use the binary driver, which is also provided.

You need to find your existing trident_drv.o file, usually found in /usr/X11R6/lib/modules/drivers/ and replace it with the version found in the tarball.

You might also need to edit your XFree86Config file, since the options present in the VIA Trident driver have been extended:

Download  Source and binary (125k)