Xservers, EDID, and Flaky Hardware

Yep, it happens. Sometimes a clone decides to go wonky. Imagine a scenario where one of forty fails to initialize graphics, when all forty have the same hardware, and boot from literally the same operating system. What to do?

Upon examining the Xorg.0.log file in /var/messages, the offending machine noted that since it could not probe any EDID information, the X Server failed to start. One Internet search yielded a result in a loose video cable (and in fact this may be the case). Yet, working over a thousand miles away, the question is, is there an alternative solution?

Why yes! The basic issue is that the system does not probe the connected LCD (via EDID) any more, so the graphics card in the machine is unaware of how to display, and thus fails. But having clones is an advantage. There is a gem of a post, here:

https://kodi.wiki/view/Creating_and_using_edid.bin_via_xorg.conf#Snag_output_from_nvidia_Xorg_driver

It outlines a way to take a known working system, and dump its EDID information to a file, and the apply it to a system that does not probe correctly – exactly this situation.

In a nutshell:

    # X -verbose 6 > xlog.txt 2>&1
    # nvidia-xconfig –extract-edids-from-file=xlog.txt –extract-edids-output-file=edid.bin

and add this to the xorg.conf file:

    Option “ConnectedMonitor” “DFP-0”
    Option “CustomEDID” “DFP-0:/etc/X11/edid.bin”
    Option “IgnoreEDID” “false”
    Option “UseEDID” “true”

What do you know? The failing system is back in action.

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