recurring problem, booting git-built to black screen with intel GPU

Robert P. J. Day rpjday at
Mon Dec 27 05:48:23 EST 2010

  this is a copy of something i forwarded to the linux kernel mailing
list, and i'd be interested if anyone else would test this and
reproduce the problem:

===== start =====

  on my ubuntu laptop (gateway NV79), a 2.6.37-rc7+ kernel i just
built now boots to a black screen.  no text mode, no virtual consoles,

  this is probably the best explanation:

annoyingly, i'm currently running a 2.6.37-rc5+ hand-rolled kernel
that works fine, but this more recent kernel doesn't, and a kernel
*earlier* also doesn't work, so this issue seems to come and go.

  here's another extended conversation on the same topic:

here's the relevant output from lspci:

00:02.0 VGA compatible controller: Intel Corporation Core Processor
Integrated Graphics Controller (rev 12) (prog-if 00 [VGA controller])
        Subsystem: Acer Incorporated [ALI] Device 031c
        Flags: bus master, fast devsel, latency 0, IRQ 41
        Memory at d0000000 (64-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=4M]
        Memory at c0000000 (64-bit, prefetchable) [size=256M]
        I/O ports at 3050 [size=8]
        Expansion ROM at <unassigned> [disabled]
        Capabilities: <access denied>
        Kernel driver in use: i915
        Kernel modules: i915

if i use "nomodeset", i can boot to the command line and no further.
i'm open to suggestions.

===== end =====

  in short, a while back, building a kernel from the git repo failed
to give me a working kernel.  suddenly, as of 2.6.37-rc5, it worked
fine and it's the kernel i'm running under right now:

$ uname -r

  and now, as of 2.6.37-rc7, it's back to being borked.  i'd love to
have piles of free time to track this down but, before i do that, i'd
be interested in having someone else try this and let me know if
exactly the same thing happens for them.

  this is a a gateway NV79 laptop, intel core i3-330m, with intel
integrated graphics controller.  thoughts?


p.s.  it seems clear that the system doesn't simply hang.  even after
the screen goes black very early in the boot process, there is ample
disk activity showing that the boot is continuing, and i eventually
hear the little ubuntu "drum roll" that indicates i'm at the login
screen.  so it's just the video that's died.


Robert P. J. Day                               Waterloo, Ontario, CANADA


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