blinking text under console with framebuffer

Declan Moriarty declan.moriarty at
Mon Oct 25 05:19:08 PDT 2004

On Sun, Oct 24, 2004 at 06:54:20PM +0200, lynx.abraxas at enlightened us thusly
> Hallo
> I have build an lfs for my laptop now and activated the vesafb driver form 
> frame buffer support. It all works fine but I noticed that with the frame 
> buffer running the escape sequence like
> echo -e '\x1b[5mHallo World!\033[0m'
> doesn't lead to blinking text but to a gray background. On the net I found 
> some hints on that saying there would be some addresses overlapping. Like for 
> blinking ESC[5m would overlap with the escape sequence for gray background. 
> The same for underlining and blue background.
> If I don't start my lfs with frame buffer support both escape sequences work 
> as they should. Sadly I couln't find out how to get true blinking text with 
> frame buffer. I tried different fbdrivers and also got some hint that it 
> would depend on either ncourses, termcap/info and/or the fb-driver itself. 
> Does anybody know something about this? What instance of the system is 
> evaluating the escape sequences? Is it termcap? Under my SuSE dist blinking 
> does not work under the console as well but in xterm it does.
> I read man console_codes but didn't understand it fully if it gives an answer 
> to my problem. I also don't get the role termcap plays. Is it emultating a  
> different type of terminal in fb mode?
> Is there a console dirver that allows 256 or more colours to be used for 
> displaying glyphs?

I have framebuffer support here and that escape sequence does provide
blinking text in a bash console. (LFS-3.3. I'll have to move on, but why
fix it if it works?)

I think you may find  that laptops have some fairly flaky video chipsets
whose designers didn't understand 'man console codes' either. They have
other priorities (Suspend/resume, external monitors & screens).

If you are serious about this, go to and look for
your laptop. Perhaps join the linux-laptop list (last heard of under
majordomo at and hunt there. or google the archives. If
you have a Chips & Tech chipset I'd give up quickly. Brands like Acer
can be very flaky under linux.


	With best Regards,

	Declan Moriarty.

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