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OS/2 - Technical => Hardware => Topic started by: cytan on 2009.06.14, 15:42:23

Title: Criticisms of Panorama VESA
Post by: cytan on 2009.06.14, 15:42:23
Hi all,
   I'm just wondering what everyone's opinion of Panorama is. After reading some threads here on choosing eCS compatible hardware, some people just don't like Panorama. However, looking at the new ecomstation video
          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tCiRd1bp-zc
where the thinkpad SL300 (which is at best a 2.26GHz core 2 duo)is used to play DVDs, I'm not convinced that Panorama is as bad as what people say it is.

   So my questions are:

(1) Does panorama suck :-) ?
(2) Is it compatible with XFree86, full screen DOS or other software?
(3) Better or worse than SNAP?

   Let the criticisms begin :-)

cytan
Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA
Post by: chennecke on 2009.06.14, 16:01:31
Well, I wouldn't say that it sucks. But it basically is a work-around and does not provide any hardware acceleration. Thanks to the clever buffering it's not dead slow but it's still slow compared to SNAP.

One thing that people are having problems with is SDL playback at 32 bit color depth. From what I've heard that's due to a color space pecularity in OS/2 and should be rather easy to fix.

On the other side SNAP shows problems with SMP systems that Panorama allegedly does not have.
Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA
Post by: DougB on 2009.06.14, 16:54:27
Panorama seems to work fine (I haven't used it a lot), but I use SNAP, simply because it also works (in VESA 2.0 mode, on my new systems),  and it will allow Doodle's Screen Saver to power off my screens, while Panorama will not. Of course, SNAP works better on my older systems.
Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA
Post by: Saijin_Naib on 2009.06.14, 17:36:48
I like Panorama fine but it is incredibly slow for 3d and complex 2d and is just... terrible for scrolling content (webpages, large folders, text documents, MrMessage buddy list, etc etc etc). It does however, FLY compared to SNAP VESA.
Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA
Post by: osw on 2009.06.14, 18:56:55
Hi all!

Well, your questions are easy - to ask. Answers however are not so simple.
If panorama sucks? If you want to have os/2/ecs just working somehow - it definitely doesn't suck. It allows you to install aged os on very modern hardware. It is universal - so it supports wide range of hardware. In theory you must not bother if ecs will install on particular video card, no matter what you have you will get screen working. In those aspects it's similar to other drivers presently developed like acpi, uniaudio and genmac.
All those drivers are about to cover wide range of hardware and increase chance that ecs will find it compatible enough to install and work on it.
But here similarities end. While uniaudio supports more than 2 audio channels on hd hardware, acpi let to use more than single core of modern cpu's (among other things like apic for instance) and genmac allows to use wi-fi cards - panorama does not provide any benefits from having better software. No matter how fast video card you put into - you will get VESA performance.
While other drivers give you progress over past (more audio channels, more cores, faster wi-fi standard) - panorama gives regression - slower performance, no 2d acceleration, no native panel resolution programing, no nothing.....
To give you some clue...
In panorama faq, one of advices how to increase slow desktop operations...
"... to increase speed of screen operations you might try to disable "full window dragging"..." 
So, now we must answer to ourselves - what do we want from os/2/ecs in the future? Just to install on modern hardware. If so, then it's okay. We should be happy. Perhaps for next couple of years it will be still possible.
But in such case we must say good bye to comfortable work with office suites, web browsers, bitmap viewers and of course to video players. Maybe such limited usability is ok for somebody, for me it is not.
Such shrinking functionality will not attract new users. Instead it may speed up migration to other platforms developed with future in mind. What advantages will have warp over other platforms? WPS? With unpatched bugs inside and closed sources? Kernel? Dead and depending on "how long will ia32 instructions in new cpu's" be supported? Who's going to pay for ecs? Owners of 486's and pentiums I? Can you see many corporate users buing new machines to run ecs on it?
What will be next generation of ecs video drivers? Text mode monochrome for fullscreen non-wps apps?
It won't work that way for long. New bounty is needed here. Decent video driver with full 2d acceleration
similar to snap - or os/2 death will have to be confirmed.

Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA
Post by: rwklein on 2009.06.14, 23:51:06
Hi all!

Well, your questions are easy - to ask. Answers however are not so simple.
If panorama sucks? If you want to have os/2/ecs just working somehow - it definitely doesn't suck. It allows you to install aged os on very modern hardware. It is universal - so it supports wide range of hardware. In theory you must not bother if ecs will install on particular video card, no matter what you have you will get screen working. In those aspects it's similar to other drivers presently developed like acpi, uniaudio and genmac.
All those drivers are about to cover wide range of hardware and increase chance that ecs will find it compatible enough to install and work on it.
But here similarities end. While uniaudio supports more than 2 audio channels on hd hardware, acpi let to use more than single core of modern cpu's (among other things like apic for instance) and genmac allows to use wi-fi cards - panorama does not provide any benefits from having better software. No matter how fast video card you put into - you will get VESA performance.
While other drivers give you progress over past (more audio channels, more cores, faster wi-fi standard) - panorama gives regression - slower performance, no 2d acceleration, no native panel resolution programing, no nothing.....
To give you some clue...
In panorama faq, one of advices how to increase slow desktop operations...
"... to increase speed of screen operations you might try to disable "full window dragging"..." 
So, now we must answer to ourselves - what do we want from os/2/ecs in the future? Just to install on modern hardware. If so, then it's okay. We should be happy. Perhaps for next couple of years it will be still possible.
But in such case we must say good bye to comfortable work with office suites, web browsers, bitmap viewers and of course to video players. Maybe such limited usability is ok for somebody, for me it is not.
Such shrinking functionality will not attract new users. Instead it may speed up migration to other platforms developed with future in mind. What advantages will have warp over other platforms? WPS? With unpatched bugs inside and closed sources? Kernel? Dead and depending on "how long will ia32 instructions in new cpu's" be supported? Who's going to pay for ecs? Owners of 486's and pentiums I? Can you see many corporate users buing new machines to run ecs on it?
What will be next generation of ecs video drivers? Text mode monochrome for fullscreen non-wps apps?
It won't work that way for long. New bounty is needed here. Decent video driver with full 2d acceleration
similar to snap - or os/2 death will have to be confirmed.



The 32 bit computer arena will not leave for at least another 5 years and that is a modest guess. Second a lot of video cards will keep some kind of VESA Interface in the video card.

I have no clue what your talking about with Panorama performance. But both me and Joachim (on a T60) use Panorama at 1024x768 64000 colours. I can use Open Office, Firefox with Flash. I can even drag a window playing a flash movie in Firefox without any real performance hit.

I guess a lot of people don't understand what a pain it is to develop code for nice broad chipset support.
You can come up with a bounty, but its not realistic ? Sounds pessimistic ? I know how much work Scitech had to build support for some video chipsets. So a bountry of a few hundred dollars won't cut the cake. It will need much more and it will need continued funding to stay current.
One thing is certain the Panorama performance is much faster then standard GRADD/ SNAP Vesa.

Make certain GRADD.SYS in \OS2 is 4635 bytes big and then in the screen object the frame buffer is switched on.
I'm sorry but to proclaim that OS/2 is dead with Panorama is a bit of a wild guess.

What you should also not forget is that the statement on ecomstation.ru is from a Russian perspective. The Russians for eCS 1.2R made a special release of the eCS demo CD with low memory usage (below 64 MB ram!). So Panorama on  Pentium 60...
But a duo core, its like a TGV..

Roderick Klein
Mensys
Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA
Post by: abwillis on 2009.06.15, 00:34:49
To a large extent performance is subjective and not objective.  On this T42 I use SNAP but have tested Panorama.  In usage, I don't really see a difference (subjective) but the benchmarks showed quite a difference (objective).  However, I then installed on a T61 and SNAP only works in VESA mode so there I used Panorama and the benchmarks on it were higher than with SNAP on this T42.  I have now been running on a Thinkpad Z61M and though I haven't had a chance to benchmark it yet, subjectively I see it as being quite good (running 1680x1050).  I'd love to see what accelerated drivers on either of those systems would do but it largely would be seen only on the benchmarks and not noticed in day to day operations. 
Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA
Post by: Blonde Guy on 2009.06.15, 04:16:39
I've benchmarked Panorama vs SNAP VESA on an  Intel Corporation Eaglelake Integrated Graphics Controller built into the motherboard, and found SNAP VESA to be faster. However, Panorama (plus the widescreen activator) supports greater screen resolutions, 1920 x 1200 vs. 1440 x 900. But at higher resolutions, Panorama image quality is bad, so I wind up running at 1440 x 900 even with Panorama.

Best way to support Panorama would be with an active developer fixing those small, annoying bugs based on public input like a forum or newsgroup.
Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA
Post by: Radek on 2009.06.15, 09:22:37
(1) "Sucks" is not the correct word. It is, at least, something. Naturally, in comparison with an accelerated driver, Panorama sucks. But when you have no accelerated driver? Panorama is many times faster than SNAP VESA driver, so that it's SNAP who is now sucking, not Panorama. If you have no driver then no Panorama = total disaster.
(2) Fullscreen DOS ok. XFree86 - I don't know. BUT ...
- Panorama isn't compatible with dive. Well, the Panorama guys state that it's the (dive) soft who is buggy but try even the simplest demos from os2 toolkit or from EDM. They are "buggy" as well - and they are "buggy" the same way as the supposedly buggy soft. Therefore, who is here buggy? Most likely, Panorama needs its own dive.dll . Examples: no dive = no VPC, no SDL based apps, ...
- Lot of software relies on SNAP today. This soft will not run with Panorama or it will run with restrictions.
(3) Far better than SNAP VESA, far worse than SNAP.
Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA
Post by: Sigurd on 2009.06.15, 09:28:23
Hi,

regarding Panorama and the Lenovo SL300 I used for the video:

- usually Panorama works fast enough with this laptop (for me)
- Playing a video with Warpvision or SMP Player works, but from time to time it seems not to be as fluent a it ought to be, mostly it is running stable and fast enough

what I really would like to have:

- correcting of this annoying colour fault when using SDL applications (like ScummVM or DOSBOX)
- a simple way to use the VGA output of the Laptop
- from time to time parts of the Windows of programs are missing or not displayed properly, once you click at those missing parts those appaer

For me SNAP was allways more stable and faster but I guess there will be no chance to bring 2D Accelaration to Panorama.

Sigurd
Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA
Post by: Radek on 2009.06.15, 09:31:51
2 Blonde Guy: It seems that it depends on the HW. ATI Mobility Radeon X700 here, !6 MB shadow buffer, write combine enabled. SNAP VESA is unbearably slow, Panorama is many times faster so that I can run at 1920x1200 true color and I can move even large windows around the screen almost completely smoothly. Windows, not frames.
Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA
Post by: abwillis on 2009.06.15, 22:27:38
The latest SDL is designed to work with vman.dll (if I recall correctly) so that it will play nice with Panorama.
Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA
Post by: cytan on 2009.06.15, 22:51:44
I know this might be daft :-), but is it possible to just REALLY support one ATI video card family like the HD4550 so that at least we have one card that will have 2D acceleration.

cytan
Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA
Post by: DougB on 2009.06.18, 05:39:39
Quote
I know this might be daft :-), but is it possible to just REALLY support one ATI video card family like the HD4550 so that at least we have one card that will have 2D acceleration.

I think that "daft" is the wrong word. "impossible" is closer to reality. Many new motherboards, and all laptops, come with whatever the manufacturer decides to include. When you convince all manufacturers, to use only one chip, your idea will work. I expect that IBM will pick up OS/2, and develop it properly, before that will ever happen.
Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA
Post by: cytan on 2009.06.18, 20:53:18
Hi Doug,
   I know that I'm not too bright :-). But since most of us eCS (OS/2) enthusiasts do build our machines with hardware which are compatible with eCS, it wouldn't be out of the range of possibility that for desktop machines that we have one family of video cards which are very well supported. The reason for this suggestion is that there are just so few developers left and asking for resources to support every known card in the universe is just too much. Perhaps that's the reason why the Panorama developers are only writing to the VESA standard. We do need 2-D acceleration, and so by narrowing our view, it has a better chance of happening than broadening it.

   Just my 2 cents.

cytan


Quote
I know this might be daft :-), but is it possible to just REALLY support one ATI video card family like the HD4550 so that at least we have one card that will have 2D acceleration.

I think that "daft" is the wrong word. "impossible" is closer to reality. Many new motherboards, and all laptops, come with whatever the manufacturer decides to include. When you convince all manufacturers, to use only one chip, your idea will work. I expect that IBM will pick up OS/2, and develop it properly, before that will ever happen.
Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA
Post by: DougB on 2009.06.18, 22:52:50
The idea sounds great, but it is impossible to implement. If you build your own desktop, you do have the luxury of selecting a specific video card (and other things). Your proposal falls apart, when a user tries to get a laptop. There is no real choice of which video adapter (and other things) that you will get. It is also a little unreasonable to have to add a video card to a motherboard, that already has a video adapter built in, and it seems that places to plug such a thing into the board, are also, slowly, going away, and the ones that are available, may be required for other things. Then, there is the problem, that video adapter XYZ, model 1, is available today, and is designated as being the adapter of choice, but tomorrow, that adapter is obsolete, and no longer available, because model 2 has replaced it, with different specs. Then, you run into the problem that model 1 is only available in North America, and not Europe, or Asia. The logistics of actually accomplishing the goal, makes it impossible to achieve. My greatest concern, at the moment, is not that we don't have 2D acceleration, but that it seems that the chip manufacturers are probably not maintaining the VESA compatibility, which will make even Panorama unusable. The bottom line, at the moment, is that there aren't enough resources to go around, to accomplish what needs to be done. Some sacrifices are needed, to keep the whole thing going, until somebody finds a way to do what is needed.
Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA (reply from Mensys)
Post by: rwklein on 2009.06.18, 23:53:27
The idea sounds great, but it is impossible to implement. If you build your own desktop, you do have the luxury of selecting a specific video card (and other things). Your proposal falls apart, when a user tries to get a laptop. There is no real choice of which video adapter (and other things) that you will get. It is also a little unreasonable to have to add a video card to a motherboard, that already has a video adapter built in, and it seems that places to plug such a thing into the board, are also, slowly, going away, and the ones that are available, may be required for other things. Then, there is the problem, that video adapter XYZ, model 1, is available today, and is designated as being the adapter of choice, but tomorrow, that adapter is obsolete, and no longer available, because model 2 has replaced it, with different specs. Then, you run into the problem that model 1 is only available in North America, and not Europe, or Asia. The logistics of actually accomplishing the goal, makes it impossible to achieve. My greatest concern, at the moment, is not that we don't have 2D acceleration, but that it seems that the chip manufacturers are probably not maintaining the VESA compatibility, which will make even Panorama unusable. The bottom line, at the moment, is that there aren't enough resources to go around, to accomplish what needs to be done. Some sacrifices are needed, to keep the whole thing going, until somebody finds a way to do what is needed.

To create drivers for 2D acceleration I think I wrote and I can write again. But maybe I will write it differently.
For now there will be no 2D acceleration drivers.  The financial resources are no there. And if you closely look at Scitech, you will see they sometimes had to debug a specific chipset multiple times to get it working correctly.

Basicly some other people already confirmed Panorama does a pretty impressive job.
SNAP in VESA mode is slower then Panorama is. If you have a system with 1 CPU core SNAP might be better.

Panorama has a modified GRADD.SYS, the frame buffer to speed things up. What realy even makes it run faster is when ACPI has SMP enabled. It goes even faster (some additional CPU tricks are utilized, don't know what).

Doug Bisset what do you mean the VESA standard will not remain around ? Silly question but the OS needs some base firmware todo output before its device drivers are loaded  ? And heck is the VESA standard goes away, some new generic interface will be around.

That Panorama is not the same as SNAP, granted. But its not as bad. And SDL already has a fixed version.
I used virtual PC with as well on my T60 and don't see any problems realy. In windows mode sometimes some slight redraw problems.

Other then that I have been using it for over a year now on my T60.

Roderick Klein
Mensys
Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA
Post by: DougB on 2009.06.19, 02:38:19
Quote
Basicly some other people already confirmed Panorama does a pretty impressive job.
SNAP in VESA mode is slower then Panorama is. If you have a system with 1 CPU core SNAP might be better.

Yes, Panorama is quite good. As I noted earlier, I don't use it, for one reason, and only one reason: It doesn't allow Doodle's screen saver to power off the screen. If that was fixed, I would use Panorama, on my newer systems. SNAP is still the best choice for a lot of older systems.

Quote
Panorama has a modified GRADD.SYS, the frame buffer to speed things up. What realy even makes it run faster is when ACPI has SMP enabled. It goes even faster (some additional CPU tricks are utilized, don't know what).

I also quit using ACPI, simply because my system hangs after about 4 hours, when I do, and it goes for about 8 days, when I use OS2APIC.PSD to run in SMP mode. Unfortunately, that is the only thing I can say about it, I have no idea what is going wrong, and I haven't found any indication of anything that will help to fix (or even describe) the problem, other than it simply stops responding, at irregular intervals, for no apparent reason.

Quote
Doug Bisset what do you mean the VESA standard will not remain around ? Silly question but the OS needs some base firmware todo output before its device drivers are loaded  ? And heck is the VESA standard goes away, some new generic interface will be around.

I didn't say it was "going away". I said that it appears that the manufacturers seem to be ignoring it. After all, windows doesn't use it any more, so who cares if it works, or not?

Quote
That Panorama is not the same as SNAP, granted. But its not as bad. And SDL already has a fixed version.
I used virtual PC with as well on my T60 and don't see any problems realy. In windows mode sometimes some slight redraw problems.

I see redraw problems with both SNAP, and Panorama (slightly worse with Panorama, for some reason). The problem seems to have something to do with multiple processor support. I suspect that it may be related to some specific compiler (specifically, whatever was used to build BackAgain/2000 v4.10), but I have nothing to prove that. Virtual PC, and Virtual Box, both show redraw problems, with either driver, but that also happens in single processor mode.
Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA (reply from Mensys) - SDDHELP.SYS
Post by: Sigurd on 2009.06.19, 07:41:43
Hello Mr. Klein,


The idea sounds great, but it is impossible to implement. If you build your own desktop, you do have the luxury of selecting a specific video card (and other things). Your proposal falls apart, when a user tries to get a laptop. There is no real choice of which video adapter (and other things) that you will get. It is also a little unreasonable to have to add a video card to a motherboard, that already has a video adapter built in, and it seems that places to plug such a thing into the board, are also, slowly, going away, and the ones that are available, may be required for other things. Then, there is the problem, that video adapter XYZ, model 1, is available today, and is designated as being the adapter of choice, but tomorrow, that adapter is obsolete, and no longer available, because model 2 has replaced it, with different specs. Then, you run into the problem that model 1 is only available in North America, and not Europe, or Asia. The logistics of actually accomplishing the goal, makes it impossible to achieve. My greatest concern, at the moment, is not that we don't have 2D acceleration, but that it seems that the chip manufacturers are probably not maintaining the VESA compatibility, which will make even Panorama unusable. The bottom line, at the moment, is that there aren't enough resources to go around, to accomplish what needs to be done. Some sacrifices are needed, to keep the whole thing going, until somebody finds a way to do what is needed.

To create drivers for 2D acceleration I think I wrote and I can write again. But maybe I will write it differently.
For now there will be no 2D acceleration drivers.  The financial resources are no there. And if you closely look at Scitech, you will see they sometimes had to debug a specific chipset multiple times to get it working correctly.

Basicly some other people already confirmed Panorama does a pretty impressive job.
SNAP in VESA mode is slower then Panorama is. If you have a system with 1 CPU core SNAP might be better.

I just tried to load SDDHELP.SYS in Addition to Panorama Vesa - and there has been

1.: a real enhancement in starting application (as mentioned in the Panorama Bug Tracker)
2.: I discover no more desgin faults or missing parts in the windows
3.: everything seems to be a little sharper

So I could be happy but there is still one thing that (for me) makes it not working: SDL application now crash.

But for people who do not use SDL applications this seems to be a good choice

Sorry, forgot the Hardware Info: I am using Lenovo SL 300 Thinkpad mit Intel 4500 Grafic and an Intel T5870 Dualcore Chip at 2 Mhz. It is used in APIC and SMP mode. ACPI is 3.14 (eCS 2.0 RC 6a)


[/quote]
Panorama has a modified GRADD.SYS, the frame buffer to speed things up. What realy even makes it run faster is when ACPI has SMP enabled. It goes even faster (some additional CPU tricks are utilized, don't know what).

Doug Bisset what do you mean the VESA standard will not remain around ? Silly question but the OS needs some base firmware todo output before its device drivers are loaded  ? And heck is the VESA standard goes away, some new generic interface will be around.

That Panorama is not the same as SNAP, granted. But its not as bad. And SDL already has a fixed version.
[/quote]

Where do you get this fixed version? I downloaded the latest from Paul Smedley but the error still occurs. Is there a different version around? Thansk for an Advice!

[/quote]
I used virtual PC with as well on my T60 and don't see any problems realy. In windows mode sometimes some slight redraw problems.



Other then that I have been using it for over a year now on my T60.

Roderick Klein
Mensys
[/quote]

Sigurd
Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA
Post by: Criguada on 2009.06.19, 09:43:41
Sigurd, I have been running Panorama with  SDDHELP.SYS for a long time now. It really is a good tradeoff, and it allows Doodle Screen Saver to power off my monitor, so Doug's concern should be solved.
I have SDL apps running here.. please read the docs in the SDL package, it needs a setting in config.sys IIRC.

Bye
Cris
Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA
Post by: Sigurd on 2009.06.19, 12:28:23
Cris,

thank you very much! Even though I read the SDL documentation included in the latest release, it seems I am to stupid to find the extra line in config.sys I should add.

Could you please be so kind to tell me the line you add at your config.sys, or where exactly to find the information?

Thanks again,

Sigurd
Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA
Post by: The Blue Warper on 2009.06.19, 15:28:11
Cris,

thank you very much! Even though I read the SDL documentation included in the latest release, it seems I am to stupid to find the extra line in config.sys I should add.

Could you please be so kind to tell me the line you add at your config.sys, or where exactly to find the information?

Thanks again,

Sigurd

Hi, Sigurd!
Well, I'm not Cris, but you'll hopefully find this info useful.

From the Panorama download page (http://en.ecomstation.ru/projects/panorama/?action=down), under the section "Libraries, runtimes", two SDL 1.2.10 packages are listed, claimed to be "ready for Panorama VESA":

ftp://ftp.netlabs.org/pub/sdl/sdl-1.2.10-bin-20070618.zip
http://ecomstation.ru/temp/200804/sdl-20080121.zip

In the readmes, Doodle does indeed mention some Panorama tuning activity.

1) ftp://ftp.netlabs.org/pub/sdl/sdl-1.2.10-bin-20070618.zip:
From the readme (section: "10. Changelog of the OS/2 port"):

Version 1.2.10 - 2007-06-18  - Doodle
 - Added support for DIVE. This is being used if SNAP is not found or cannot
   be used for some reason. Please note that SDL in DIVE mode does not support
   fullscreen mode. Also note that DIVE is a bit slower than SNAP.
 - New environment variable: SDL_DISABLE_FSLIB. Set it to something if you
   want to use the DIVE mode even if you have SNAP installed.
   e.g: set SDL_DISABLE_FSLIB=1


2) http://ecomstation.ru/temp/200804/sdl-20080121.zip
From the "info" file:

20080121
Doodle

it now has VMAN support instead of DIVE for systems where SNAP is not found.
I'd like to know if it works for others, both in windowed and fullscreen mode.

I only tested JumpNBump and Wesnoth, and worked for me, but I have SNAP
installed.


The sdl12.dll included in the eComStation.ru site has a different size than the one found on netlabs (303303 bytes vs. 188391 bytes).  I don't know if there are any real differences between the two.  Either the bigger one is a debug version or it's a 'merged' DLL that contains fslib.dll and sdl12.dll.  Anyway the readme in the netlabs version says:

Version 1.2.10 - 2008-01-21  - Doodle
 - Replaced DIVE backend with VMAN backend, for better performance for Panorama users.
   It also has the advantage of having fullscreen support.


Latest version is ftp://ftp.netlabs.org/pub/sdl/sdl-1.2.10-bin-20080804.zip
but it shouldn't contain any Panorama-related enhancements, as far as I can see.

So, in summary, it seems that Doodle did make some enhancements to his SDL port in order to provide better compatibility with Panorama (and with non-SNAP drivers, too).  As to the config.sys setting Cris was referring to, perhaps it is that
SET SDL_DISABLE_FSLIB=1
which is mentioned by Doodle in his readmes starting from the 20080121 version.

Hope this helps a bit.

Regards
Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA
Post by: MrJinx on 2009.06.19, 17:46:09
Based on the info provided, I was hopeful for a moment. I too experience the same problems Sigurd refers to with certain SDL apps.
None of these suggestions help.
1. adding sddhelp.sys to my config.sys and starting a full screen dosbox session worked,  once you try and exit the session or Alt-Esc out, It's game over, no desktop, hard reboot! Is there other switches for the driver I'm missing?
2. The problem is not that Panorama will not run SDL apps in full screen, The problem is when some SDL apps are running in full screen, the color tables are messed up. In my casee, Dosbox and ScummVM in FS mode have inverted red and blue color palettes.
Many of the SDL apps for OS/2 ship with SDL.DLL,SDL12.DLL,FSLIB.DLL, I have removed those and only leave the 804 2008 release set in my dll directory. that helped some of the windowed sdl apps. didn't affect the FS apps.

Some SDL apps that do work ok in FS for me are VirtualBox, SDLMAME<latest release.
Can you concur? Sigurd

I'm quite fine with Panorama for now if the SDL FS thing could get resolved... I have Windows for workgroups 3.11 and WIndows Millennium working in dosbox but looks horrible in inverted color mode!
Scitech VESA mode on my Acer Aspire One netbook was so slow it was unusable!

Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA
Post by: DougB on 2009.06.20, 00:04:36
Quote
Sigurd, I have been running Panorama with  SDDHELP.SYS for a long time now. It really is a good tradeoff, and it allows Doodle Screen Saver to power off my monitor, so Doug's concern should be solved.

Well, no. It still won't power off the screen. I have an Acer AL1715 screen, attached, by the DVI interface, to a video adapter described by PCI.EXE as:
Vendor 1002h ATI Technologies Inc
Device 9610h Radeon HD 3200 Graphics

I have DSS set up to start the Cairo clock, after 3 minutes of inactivity, and it is supposed to turn off the screen after 2 minutes of screen saving. The clock comes on as expected, runs for 2 minutes, then sits there not moving, until I wake it up. The screen never goes off, when I use Panorama. It does when I use SNAP.

I also tried various SDL versions, with no apparent changes, and I added:
SET SDL_DISABLE_FSLIB=1
to my config.sys. Still no changes.

I do agree, that performance is better, when I use Panorama, but that isn't as important as having the screen turn itself off IMO. I know that I can just turn the screen off, with the power switch, but I often forget to do that, so I prefer that it is done automatically.
Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA
Post by: Sigurd on 2009.06.21, 08:03:20
Based on the info provided, I was hopeful for a moment. I too experience the same problems Sigurd refers to with certain SDL apps.
None of these suggestions help.
1. adding sddhelp.sys to my config.sys and starting a full screen dosbox session worked,  once you try and exit the session or Alt-Esc out, It's game over, no desktop, hard reboot! Is there other switches for the driver I'm missing?
2. The problem is not that Panorama will not run SDL apps in full screen, The problem is when some SDL apps are running in full screen, the color tables are messed up. In my casee, Dosbox and ScummVM in FS mode have inverted red and blue color palettes.
Many of the SDL apps for OS/2 ship with SDL.DLL,SDL12.DLL,FSLIB.DLL, I have removed those and only leave the 804 2008 release set in my dll directory. that helped some of the windowed sdl apps. didn't affect the FS apps.

Some SDL apps that do work ok in FS for me are VirtualBox, SDLMAME<latest release.
Can you concur? Sigurd

I'm quite fine with Panorama for now if the SDL FS thing could get resolved... I have Windows for workgroups 3.11 and WIndows Millennium working in dosbox but looks horrible in inverted color mode!
Scitech VESA mode on my Acer Aspire One netbook was so slow it was unusable!



Hi,

yes, I can concur. For me only the two applications: SCUMMVM and DOSBOX do have this inverted colorsheme. Others like Virtualbox do show the right colours.

I remebered together with Shai we discussed this here:

http://www.os2world.com/component/option,com_smf/Itemid,63/topic,1093.msg7452/#msg7452

as well.


Wonder, why I seem to forgot this - think I am getting older  :o

He solved the problem by telling the SDL program to use the full desktop screen resolution. I will try this again in the evening.

What I was able to figure out: If you reset desktop colour from 16M to 64K the Dosbox Window and the ScummVm window both started with the right colour sheme....

I will giv it more tries this evening.

Just to inform  ;) :

Yesterday I bought a ASUS EEE 1008HA PC, and try to do my best with eCS there. Already installed it, but LAN and WLAN not running, to early to say more, will inform about progress in a different thread.

Sigurd
Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA
Post by: David McKenna on 2009.06.21, 15:17:01
  You guys might want to try the libs found here:

http://ebisa.hp.infoseek.co.jp/os2/index.htm#others

 and see if there is any improvement. I haven't tried DOSBox or SCUMMVM myself...

Dave McKenna
Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA
Post by: warpcafe on 2009.06.22, 22:16:22
Hi,

regarding video drivers and OS/2|eCS, well, I could keep talking about a trunkload of things for an entire day, but let me keep it short ;) :
- I used to have a registered version of SNAP for years (even back to when it was called "DisplayDoctor" ;) )
- Panorama is slow, yes, (not to mention when compared to Snap...)

However:
I am able to write this in eCS because Panorama exists. SNAP does not work at all with my newer machines and I'm fed up with having to buy outdated, slow, hard-to-find hardware just because my drivers won't support new stuff.

So Panorama for me is a "necessary evil" you might want to say. I am not excited about it like I was with SNAP, however I WAS excited when I noticed that it makes eCS work on my machines and SNAP didn't. That's it basically.

On a side-note:
Panorama could be improved, yes. But this is nothing impossible. We have to understand that Scitech had a lot more resources and a long-term codebase that was constantly evolving over years, while Panorama has few lesser personnell working on it (how much? 1? 2 people? part-time?) and they basically have started it from scratch. If you look at it from this angle - not bad at all, right?

Finally one comment: Panorama might be dead-slow, but SNAP is only *dead*.
(Except perhaps for "close-to-death" hardware.)
And believe me, it hurts to say this as a long-time fanatical lover of SNAP... but at the end of the day...

Cheers,
Thomas
Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA
Post by: RobertM on 2009.06.23, 00:21:48
While I agree with what Thomas said, there are other factors as well - for me, SNAP (any release) was downright painful for any "recent" nVidia chipset (2000 to date), while I understand (have not tried) that Panorama is at least better in that respect.

Mostly, when possible, I try to find an ATI card that is supported by SNAP. Sad choice.
Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA
Post by: Saijin_Naib on 2009.06.23, 00:57:37
I never had issues with my Nvidia FX5500OC nor my friends 6600? What issues did they give you?

Also, didn't SNAP release the source as OpenSNAP? Could Panorama not merge the two projects?
Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA
Post by: abwillis on 2009.06.23, 02:26:53
I never had issues with my Nvidia FX5500OC nor my friends 6600? What issues did they give you?

Also, didn't SNAP release the source as OpenSNAP? Could Panorama not merge the two projects?

SNAP was not open sourced.  I contacted the new owners and they are willing to release the OS/2 code but we would have to come up with the money to pay for the code to be split out.  I don't know have any idea how many hours that would require (which would have to then be calculated to a dollar figure). 
Andy
Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA
Post by: RobertM on 2009.06.23, 18:31:28
I never had issues with my Nvidia FX5500OC nor my friends 6600? What issues did they give you?

Also, didn't SNAP release the source as OpenSNAP? Could Panorama not merge the two projects?

Oh, they work fine for me... but are horrendously slow. For instance, doing a directory listing in a cmd window is painfully slow. Firefox (especially for displaying pages with lotsa tables or divs) is painfully slow. I've got some ancient, properly supported video cards that run circles around the nVidia/SNAP combinations I have tried.

Rob
Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA
Post by: Saijin_Naib on 2009.06.23, 22:37:28
Weird, I never experienced any slowness under SNAP with my nvidia chipsets. Well, except my 7600GT but that is just because its too new :'(
Title: Re: Criticisms of Panorama VESA
Post by: WarpWorld on 2009.09.10, 15:31:04
Hi
can I download installation of Panorama driver if something as that existed and easy install on the newest hardware (as installation for SNAP driver,but it can't recognize the newest graphic cards) because I have Warp 4.5?