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XelKarin
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Joined: 29 Dec 2003
Posts: 41

PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2015 9:08 am    Post subject: Linux console blanks white Reply with quote

Hey All,

I recently got a new laptop. I noticed that when idle the Linux console blanks white, although X blanks out black as expected. The laptop has an ATI Mobility Radeon HD 5650/5750 / 6530M/6550M graphics card. I'm using the in kernel ATI Radeon DRI driver. Support for frame buffer devices was auto-selected, but I didn't select a specific frame buffer driver. I noticed a frame buffer initializing during bootup, so I'm assuming the DRI driver includes it's own frame buffer driver. Anyone have any idea how I could ensure that the console frame buffer blanks black? I'm afraid that if I accidentally leave it on console, then one day it might ruin my screen.

I guess I should mention I'm running gentoo-sources-4.0.5.

edit: missed the final 'M' on graphics card model
edit2: kernel version
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szatox
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Joined: 27 Aug 2013
Posts: 1752

PostPosted: Thu Sep 24, 2015 5:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I'm afraid that if I accidentally leave it on console, then one day it might ruin my screen.

Not exactly what you ask for, but what display do you use?
If it's plasma or CRT, then you're right they burn out over time. If it's LCD, the color doesn't matter, however powering it off instead of blanking out would still be better for it's backlight.
On the other hand, those things can still last several years and you will likely replace them anyway due to technology progress, standard changes, leaks in the panel or cat-triggered impact driven by the gravity.
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Aquous
l33t
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Joined: 08 Jan 2011
Posts: 700

PostPosted: Fri Sep 25, 2015 7:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Take a look at the setterm command:
Code:
man setterm

That might suit your needs?

szatox wrote:
Quote:
I'm afraid that if I accidentally leave it on console, then one day it might ruin my screen.

Not exactly what you ask for, but what display do you use?
If it's plasma or CRT, then you're right they burn out over time. If it's LCD, the color doesn't matter, however powering it off instead of blanking out would still be better for it's backlight.
On the other hand, those things can still last several years and you will likely replace them anyway due to technology progress, standard changes, leaks in the panel or cat-triggered impact driven by the gravity.
As it's a laptop, I doubt the screen is easily replaced...
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soulsource
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Joined: 25 Jan 2014
Posts: 26

PostPosted: Thu Oct 01, 2015 9:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm having the same issue, with an AMD C-60 APU. I've found that it sometimes instead blanks to black and correctly switches off the screen backlight, but this is sporadic, and typically (though not always) only the first blank after boot. Nearly every time it instead turns white and leaves the backlight running. Funny enough, backlight control over the radeon settings in sysfs works fine for me, including a 100% reliably working backlight on/off switch...
I suspect (but could not yet verify) that in my case the issue arises from two conflicting backlight controls. One of them is from the radeon driver, the other one comes from the WMI driver of my notebook (Asus WMI I think - I don't have the laptop around right now, it might also be eeepc-something). I haven't found a reliable way to get it working, as I can at the moment choose between working console blanking, or the lack of platform specific features like the brightness control hotkeys...

Given that the screen backlight switches off when I close the laptop lid, I didn't pay much attention and just decided to always close it when I don't use it... :wink:
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