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Xorg vesa driver stopped working after kernel upgrade

Hi there,
I'm a firstposter, hope this is the right place to ask.
Excuse me if I'm verbose, I hope too much is better than too few.

I use Debian for a few years now (since Sarge was Testing), the Testing distribution, regularly dist-upgrading it. I have an ATI Radeon X1300 graphics card, hence "vesa" driver in Xorg ("ati" and "radeon" don't seem to work, will look into the proprietary ATI driver in the near future). FWIW, I have an AMD Sempron PC, 512 MiB RAM, 1152x864x24bpp screen mode.

All worked just fine on this box until a kernel update in Testing after Etch, and it just works if I stuck with linux-image 2.6.18 486. With later kernels (was it since 2.6.22?) when X starts it shows a black screen, with a red pattern on top of the screen (depending on the screen resolution, other patterns at 1024x768 for example, seems garbage from console).

I'd say all my system is aligned with the current Testing distribution except linux, and since later kernels support my USB wireless dongle, I'm trying to keep the pace. I have installed just the basic linux-image package, with no console framebuffer, logos and the like.

Any suggestion?

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