Mailinglist Archive: opensuse-features (214 mails)

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[openFATE 308357] Replacement for Sax2
Feature changed by: Satoru Matsumoto (HeliosReds)
Feature #308357, revision 61
Title: Replacement for Sax2

openSUSE-11.3: Rejected by Andreas Jaeger (a_jaeger)
reject date: 2010-11-08 16:46:11
reject reason: Not done for 11.3.
Requester: Important

openSUSE Distribution: Implementation
Requester: Mandatory

Requested by: Tara Ikeda (taraikeda)
Developer: Manu Gupta (manugupt1)
Partner organization:

We need a replacement for sax2 in 11.3, as a safety measure for when
auto configuration fails to detect certain monitors/keyboards/mice.
Relying on the Desktop Environment for this is not the best idea, as
some DE's or window managers dont provide config tools for what you
might need to work.
So I propose instead of relying on xrandr, Hal, devicekit or whatever
there should be a GUI to configure graphics cards, mice, and keyboards
without depending on the DE or a WM to provide a tool for the end user.
I mention this as I have had KDE 4 fail to detect my resolutions and
sometimes keyboard, luckily SAX2 is there to aid me but if its going
the way of the dodo then I propose a relacement tool so that the end
user wont have to make a xorg.conf and spend some time setting it up.
It takes skill to make edits to a xorg.conf file and one can easily
mess it up
So having a helpful GUI tool is needed sometimes.

Business case (Partner benefit): Because of new users mainly, because we dont want them to
install openSUSE and have it fail to detect their proper monitor
resolution and default to a much smaller one. The goal here is ease of
use, but also to have a a safety net just in case. With openSUSE being
more geared toward KDE a tool like Sax2 becomes even more needed.
KDE4's monitor detection tool sucks, its always given me headaches in
Ubuntu, in Mandriva, in many other KDE4 distros. It has no feature to
remember monitor settings, nor does it do a good job with enabling my
resolution. But i am not doing this just for me, many others have
issues with KDE4's monitor tool

#1: Bernhard Wiedemann (bmwiedemann) (2009-12-03 17:23:48)
maybe XFdrake or drakx11 from mandrake would be an alternative.
Also a big reason for keeping SaX2 or a similar tool is that by default
no xorg.conf is generated, so that it is even harder to generate a
working one from scratch.

#2: Jan Engelhardt (jengelh) (2009-12-05 13:41:04)
I doubt anything will be done - if tools like sax2 go, there is hardly
any room for another ('cause otherwise one could have kept sax2). You
can still download sax2 from its project page.

#3: Shekhar Neupane (wildnux) (2009-12-09 09:15:42)
users like me will be very happy if we don't have to search tools to
configure our keyboard, mouse or monitors. I am using dell inspiron
e1705 and wanted to configure my synaptics touchpad through kde4, but
it messed it up more. so i had to revert back to the default. I would
love to have sax or any tool do that in OS level rather than WM level.

#4: Chris Cox (cjcox) (2010-02-24 18:29:27)
xorg gets it WRONG a lot.  A whole LOT.  Autodetection simply cannot
detect everything and certainly doesn't allow the user the ability to
demand something on purpose.  I'd like to see sax2 continue... or at
least something similar.
It's impossible for xorg to scan the brain of the user IMHO to figure
out what is "right".

#5: Lee Matheson (oldcpu) (2010-06-11 15:16:37)
As an interim work around (to help openSUSE forum users) duing the the
transition from no sax2 to a better Xorg automatic configuration I
started a forum guide here:

But its inadequate, and a "wiki" is needed, and NOT a forum guide.  I
also raised a bug report here (suggesting a wiki as a work around
solution) and I was assigned the action of doing so here:
(  .  ...
The idea of mine is NOT to replace any openFATE idea, but at least provide
an interim solution for users until the way forward becomes more
clear.  Things are advancing very fast in the Graphical area for Linux
and its hard to stay up to date.

#7: Martin Seidler (pistazienfresser) (2010-06-22 22:18:34) (reply to
I propose to take a look at oldcpu's so called " draft - Configure
Graphics - openSUSE
( " wiki
article (and maybe also at,
and search for graphic card or sax2 in the forums)
- especially to estimate how much an easy graphical solution for
problem with graphic cards and their drivers may be needed.

#8: Martin Seidler (pistazienfresser) (2010-06-23 08:58:28) (reply to
The great and enormos wiki work of L. M. is now at:
as "SDB:Configuring
graphics cards".

#6: nick skeen (ns89) (2010-06-15 22:38:39)
As bad as Sax2 was, when it did work it seemed to work well, especially
when using it to configure the Nvidia proprietary drivers. I would
really like to see it either come back, or be replaced by a tool of
similar functionality.

#9: Alexandros Sikamiotis (aleksandros) (2010-07-17 17:48:47)
Unfortunately quality of SUSE has dropped enormously due to the loss of
Sax2. Without hacking the console it's "you either get what I want
(xorg detection), or nothing at all".
We need a new GUI tool ASAP. I have 2 PCs and xorg autoconfiguration
was a nightmare in both, while in all SUSE releases from 9.3 till 11.1
everything was perfect.

#10: Joe D'Angelo (wolfspider2) (2010-07-18 03:40:44)
I plan on looking into the writing of either a shell script or a Perl
app that will write a good generic xorg.conf file. I will keep you all
posted as things progress. If anyone else has some code to share I
would encourage you to do it soon. We all see the need for a text level
utility to do something rather than just see your x server fail.

#11: Genix Info (genixinfo) (2010-07-19 09:17:24)
I support the return or replacement of Sax2 (on openSUSE Linux 11.4),
since many users are not able to configure the resolution of your video
easily and fast, my video hardware is Intel and works fine (as far as
( ), but many users
with video hardware SIS (among others.), are being affected by not
having more Sax2.

#12: H. Hansen (cyberbeat) (2010-07-23 20:56:50)
an alternative (in kde case) would be to help fixing krandr to make it
work properly. I also had to write bash scripts and modify config files
in /etc/X11 in opensuse-11.3 to make my laptop screen setup work.

#13: Genix Info (genixinfo) (2010-07-24 06:23:21)
I see that there is a strategic discussion of openSUSE
I'll be very happy if they (or you, or even the community, because it
will start talks between developers and community) in this discussion,
decide that openSUSE, now has more autonomy from Novell, and to take
major decision as the creation of the Foundation openSUSE
and that the foundation now has more autonomy from Novell, and decides
to return or replace the SaX2 (
because the removal of SaX2 ( of
openSUSE, was a decision made by Novell, who preferred not to invest in
the development of SaX2, for business issues
(, for
this and other reasons, I am in favor of creation, of Foundation
openSUSE, and also decide that the openSUSE, switching to versions LTS
(Long Term Support), and that support will last for more of three
years, among other points that must be discussed. I just want a better

#14: Genix Info (genixinfo) (2010-07-24 06:41:41)
See these links:



#15: Genix Info (genixinfo) (2010-07-24 06:41:41)
See these links:



#16: Jan Engelhardt (jengelh) (2010-08-19 20:11:51) (reply to #15)
You have a strange tendency to double post everything. Literally

#17: Nicolas Boucher (linuxbidouille) (2010-08-22 08:53:06)
I come from Mandriva world, where I can see that Yast and MCC are more
or less equal.
BUT Mandriva has a great plus in the MCC : all the SAX2 part is
available in MCC.
I find that this feature is a MUST if you want to spread Linux over the

#18: Rajko Matovic (rajko_m) (2010-08-22 12:21:09)
It is probably hardware that I use, but SaX2 was completely useless for
me for a long time.
I had better success using:
X -configure
to create xorg.conf, copy it in /etc/X11/xorg.conf and then use card
vendor (Nvidia, ATI) tools to configure the rest, or manually enter my
monitor and graphic card data directly in xorg.conf. This tells that
problem is communication between graphic driver and Xorg (SaX2, or any
other tool), otherwise even vendor specific tools will not work. 
The only benefit from SaX2 would be to allow manual monitor setup,
which means that SaX2 has to be stripped down from automatic part, but
then good article that will explain how to edit xorg.conf safely will
be faster way to fix the problem, even with initial need to read such

#19: Jose Ramirez (1antares1) (2010-09-24 19:07:40)
By God!! I come from Ubuntu because there working manually configuring
the Xorg and headache, seeing that there was tedious to configure all
the hardware on hand and now come to remove the Sax2 when I was happy
to try the version 11.3: S "With this they gets to the end user's mind?
It was a great disappointment to the few users who use openSUSE and now
they come and make life more difficult, the community they have earned.
Mandriva has its own Sax2 integrated into the MCC, and they still
passing through a dark past And us? By returning to the past? The more
attractive are the desktop, but behind all the settings that were made
with clicks. Do not believe reaching the minds of programmers and a
mouthful of words saying that "Xorg-configure" is much more stable and
better. Tell that to your grandmother and see that they will say he is
right, who prefers to enter console and create a "Xorg-configure" then
copy it to /etc/X11/xorg.conf and manually edit the modules that they
recognize the 1440x900 resolution. ...........! :$

#20: Angel Vargas (straim) (2010-10-04 08:42:16)
I'm shocked! I been like an hour trying to find the sax2 package or
yast2-sax package thinking, "how could they released 11.3 with this
bug? sax2 not being installed by default... uff what a mess..." then
after look at the main repos and find that there's no such package,
search on google and find this thread. I'm completely stunned!. Ok I
can handle the fact that there's no official KDE 3.5 anymore, and no
KNetworkManager to work in the KDE 3.5 repos (of course it's an old DE
an unmaintained), But rely on the KDE4 screen config features and the
Xorg autodetect features to set a proper screen configuration and flag
sax2 gui tools as obsolete is one of the most stupid things I ever seen
since the openSUSE community born! I've been using SuSE Linux since 8.0
and believe me, I hate this version as much as  10.2. Hope community
read your claims and find a solution as quickly as they can, as for me
I'm going to stick to the unflawed 11.1 version (KDE 3.5 fully
functional and sax2). Good Luck!

#21: ursan marius bogdan (creatura85) (2010-11-09 16:17:10) (reply to
I back all of you up having Sax2 around is really nice and hope that it
will be provided under openSUSE 11.4
Angel you could use openSUSE 11.2, it too has an working Sax2 tool as
well, with KDE 4.4

#22: Wallacy Freitas (wallacyf) (2010-12-03 22:08:19)
I just remove my video card to put in another computer and guess what?
The system does not enter again, he asks to reconfigure X11. Before it
was pretty easy, just type "sax2" to the console and ready. Now? Back
to editing configuration files ...
They could at least add a "xconfigure" that would detect the hardware
again in case of error.

#23: Ken Gramm (kmgramm) (2010-12-12 01:03:18)
I've got a good reason to use Sax2, some KVMs don't allow the video
card to properly detect the attached monitor. So instead of 1440x900,
X11 will default back to 800x600 or maybe 1024x768 if I'm luck. With
Sax2, I could just manually set the resolution.
If you have dual monitors, and one goes through a KVM, the matter get

#24: Dean Martin (deano_ferrari) (2011-01-02 08:22:13) (reply to #23)
I would like to see a basic sax2 replacement, (in the form of a simple
YaST tool), that would allow those who have problem displays, the
simple ability to configure manual display modes, (and maybe DPI or
physical display sizes). I know KDE provides a System Settings (xrandr-
based) utility, but YaST has the advantages that it can be used from
runlevel 3, and is not desktop dependent.

#25: Lukas Krejza (gryffus) (2011-01-03 19:43:59)
You _dont need any xorg.conf_ in most cases. Just delete xorg.conf and
start X. For most cases Sax was used to set a custom modeline / refresh
rates manually. You can do this via tools from your graphics card
manufacturer (nVidia / AMD) or manually editing files in /etc/X11/xorg.
conf.d/ (custom monitor parameters are in /etc/X11/xorg.conf.d/50-
monitor.conf... Again, use of xorg.conf is deprecated in most cases. If
you want a replacement for Sax2, just write what features exactly are
you missing. Not just autogeneration of xorg.conf. Xorg itself can do
it much better.

#26: Lee Matheson (oldcpu) (2011-01-04 15:40:52)
A couple of thoughts here, reflecting some of the discussions from this
openSUSE forum thread:
One possibility is not to create a full fledged sax2 replacement, but
rather only a simple graphical tool (without all the bells and whistles
that sax2 had). With the move towards /etc/X11/xorg.conf.d/ config
files, it may only be needed to provide a basic capability of adjusting
50-monitor.conf to specify a preferred mode, (and maybe modelines), for
a monitor that requires the manual entry (usually because of EDID
issues). It might also be required to adjust the horizontal sync and
vertical refresh ranges, (but not much else).
If a full fledged sax2 replacment is deemed necessary, then perhaps
SuSE-GmbH and/or key openSUSE community members could liase with
another distribution that has adopted a similar X graphic structure,
and pool resources to come up with a common tool. My view is a complete
sax2 replacment may be too much effort for any one distribution.

#27: Matthias Schünemann (wodenhof) (2011-02-25 15:38:29)
I support this request. Here
( is another reason for a tool
like an advanced SAX2: Multiuser / Multiseat features are not easily
done to which I can testify after several weeks of labour... Any help
from the experts (or their tool) would be most welcome.

#28: Jeff Mahoney (jeff_mahoney) (2011-02-28 21:42:14)
/etc/X11/xorg.conf is dead and was the source of half your problems. It
doesn't understand added or changed hardware. Autoconfiguration is here
to stay and is the right solution. MacOS doesn't need you to
painstakingly configure your graphics hardware. Windows doesn't need to
you to painstakingly configure your graphics hardware. Hacking together
an xorg.conf nee XF86Config was never fun, even for us grizzled old
UNIX beards. It doesn't make you hard core, it just makes your system
unusably difficult to maintain.
To be clear, you're proposing spending a lot of effort on a WORKAROUND
for bugs in X. If you're going to spend a bunch of effort figuring out
how to tweak X for various hardware, how about teaching X about

#29: Lee Matheson (oldcpu) (2011-03-20 08:56:12) (reply to #28)
There will always be cases, despite the best efforts in making X
automatic for most hardware, where the EDID is not recognized, or the
default resolution is inappropriate. Hence that is why the view was
expressed above that a user friendly Linux graphical tool (without all
the bells and whistles of sax2) be developed to provide a basic
capability of adjusting 50-monitor.conf to specify a preferred mode,
(and maybe modelines), for a monitor that requires the manual entry
(usually because of EDID issues). It might also be required to adjust
the horizontal sync and vertical refresh ranges, (but not much else).
In my view if we debate trying to put a tool in place that has all the
bells and whistles of sax2 this openFATE submission will NEVER get off
the ground for the very issues you mentioned.
Ergo, I hope the community can scope what is reasonable, and what is
definitely needed, and proceed from there.

#30: Martin Seidler (pistazienfresser) (2011-03-31 18:58:31)
The realization of this feature seems to me to be now part of the
participation of openSUSE in Google Summer of Code 2011. For more and
original information from the 'makers'/developers, the student (Manu
Gupta) and his mentor (Michal Hrušecký), have a look at:
* openSUSE:GSOC 2011 Ideas 6. Distribution tools > SaX 3
( on the wiki *
GSoC 2011 ideas – SaX 3
( , by Michal
Hrušecký on his blog, 2011-02-24 * Introducing SaX3 as a GSoC Project
( ,
stated by Manu Gupta (2011-03-31 03:51:36 GMT) on the opensuse-project
mailinglist. I wish the participants in that project and all other
openSUSE/Google Summer of Code projects for 2001 to have a lot of fun
and (being not only altruistic ;) ) a lot of success, too.
Martin (pistazienfresser)

#31: John Kilgour (wjohnk) (2011-05-07 22:47:35)
<P>I tried openSUSE 11.4 KDE live 32 bit CD on an elderly computer and
a 1064 x 768 monitor. The live CD worked fine with this screen. I then
installed 11.4 and the screen defaulted to 800 x 600 or 640 x 480. I
could not find out how to get the 1064 x 768 display working. We need a
SAX replacement to sort this out.</P>

#32: Greg Freemyer (gregfreemyer) (2011-05-07 23:25:31)
The SaX3 project for GSoC has been selected / funded.
The target date for completion is the end of summer some time.
Can we migrate the status of this to in progress and take it out of the
most popular list in the weekly opensuse news.

+ #35: Satoru Matsumoto (heliosreds) (2011-05-21 03:43:01) (reply to
+ #32)
+ I've added Manu Gupta as a Developer for this feature and moved the status
+ from Unconfirmed to Implemantation. I've also taken it out of the most
+ popular list in OWN from Issue 176 on.

#33: Tomas Kuchta (tkuchta) (2011-05-08 23:59:27)
This is absolutely brilliant news .... I had so many problems with
older machines even with (once) mainstream Intel chipsets (like
Brookdale a few weeks ago). And one cannot stay with older version due
to lack of patches for older version such as 10.3....
My usual solution - get an old graphic card which is detected and used
correctly ... what a joy looking for PCI or AGP cards these days.
Even for older or unusual monitors it can be impossible to set X
correctly without tool like SAX.

#34: Roger Luedecke (shadowolf7) (2011-05-12 04:46:29)
Adding this as a YaST module would probably be best.

openSUSE Feature:

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