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I'm looking at installing XBMC in Debian on a mATX PC I'll use as both a NAS and HTPC.

I am currently researching the actual components that will make up this computer and I'm considering how graphics need to be accounted for. I don't know exactly what Xorg is, technically, all I know is it's needed for graphics environments.

Anyway, I want to use XFCE on Debian but for 1080p decoding with built in Intel HD 300 graphics I assume some special drivers are needed to take advantage of this? No doubt this would 'just work' out the box on Windows, but I want to use Linux for its features that make running a NAS on it more power-user friendly.

tldr: What exactly are the technical considerations that need to be made with getting integrated graphics hardware acceleration working under Linux (Debian) environments? Must I make it work with Xorg, XFCE and the media player itself (XMBC)?

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X.org supplies hardware acceleration. XFCE and XMBC run on top of it and use the hardware acceleration it provides. – JamesGecko Feb 8 '12 at 17:12
    
So how do I set up Xorg to enable hardware acceleration? Do I install the drivers via Xorg or does it somehow (how?) pickup that the correct drivers are installed somewhere? I have no experience of setting up drivers under Linux, in the past I've never needed to (or generic ones have done). – deed02392 Feb 8 '12 at 17:55
up vote 3 down vote accepted

People on this question say that the Intel HD 3000 card should work out of the box on Ubuntu 11.10, no tweaking needed. This appears to be a relatively recent occurrence.

I think this means it should also work out of the box on Debian, as long as the kernel is >= 2.6.39. As of last September this required a backport for Squeeze. So Wheezy, which comes with more recent kernels, may be an easier option.

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I need it to work on Debian. All the bloat that comes with Ubuntu is unnecessary to me. – deed02392 Feb 11 '12 at 17:28
    
Doh! Had AskUbuntu open and got mixed up. I think it should also work out of the box on Debian, as long as the kernel is >= 2.6.39. As of last September, this required a backport for Squeeze, so Wheezy may be an easier option. – JamesGecko Feb 13 '12 at 14:30
    
That's really helpful James, thanks for finding that for me. Perhaps you should edit your answer to contain the above and then your downvote will magically become an upvote/accepted answer. :$ :) – deed02392 Feb 13 '12 at 14:58

This works out of the box for me with Xubuntu 64 bit. Video playback is fine. I think missing pixel shader support (or maybe HD3000 doesn't have that anyway).

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