Saturday, April 21, 2007

Issues I had to install my graphic card in ubuntu -Nvidia Rivia TNT2-


I can tell you installing the "right" driver for your graphic will boost your ubuntu speed and also its appearance and it really becomes faster !

not installing my graphic card driver I had some problems ,
I used to see Firefox uses a lot of CPU while opening Digg.com or Blogger.com (other people also had the same problem )
I fixed that problem by installing the right driver for my TNT2 graphic card , and now Firefox and my other programs like Ktorrent or Tomboy load so much faster !

it may be a reall headache to install the "right" driver for your card, but it worth it and I tell you Ubuntu without right graphic card driver, is not Ubuntu ! it is Half of Ubuntu .

First of all I make a back up of my Xorg.conf like a good boy !
So here is how I installed my Nvidia TNT2 graphic card :
I first backed up my Xorg.conf using this command (you should really do that before installing any graphic driver program )
sudo cp /etc/X11/xorg.conf /etc/X11/xorg.conf.backup
then I installed the drive using the menu , system--> adminstrator --> restricted driver manager ,then it automaticly installed my graphic card.

(I made sure I had not installed the driver using other programs like "automatix2" or "envy" , in that case I uninstalled the driver installed by them first )

How to make sure if the Graphic driver is installed and enabled ?

try this
sudo nvidia-glx-config enable
and also this :
glxgears
this should show a 3D animation and also some numbers in the terminal like

909 frames in 5.0 seconds = 181.725 FPS
1060 frames in 5.0 seconds = 211.880 FPS
1115 frames in 5.0 seconds = 222.946 FPS
998 frames in 5.0 seconds = 199.475 FPS
if those numbers which I marked in red, are less than 1000 (like 150 , 300...) then you have not enabled / installed it right !

Ah , Low Screen Reolution Problem !
but after installing I found out my screen resolution is 800*600 and it doesn't let me change it . some others also have the same problem , and a bug is listed in luanch pad for this !

the problem is the Ubuntu fails to detect the monitor Horizontal and Vertical Refresh Rate numbers, (on ubuntu site they have explained this fix in detail) .
to fix this problem I do this (I have made backup of the xorg.conf ! okay?)
sudo gedit /etc/X11/xorg.conf
(if you are in not graphic mode , you should use nano instead of gedit)

now find the Section "Monitor"
and add these lines just before EndSection :
HorizSync 30-96
VertRefresh 50-160

mind that those numbers (30-96 and 50-160) are default numbers which should work with most monitors ,but your monitor may be different , so google for it to find the right numbers.
for your own monitor .

now save the file and then restart your Ubuntu !



I was also told on the forums to add this to my Section "Screen" in Xorg.conf for better performance (this is just for my card -TNT2-)
Option "AllowGLXWithComposite" "1"

Now I have installed the driver and I am enjoying it !

+For Nividia and ATI cards there is an Automatic tool to install drivers called Envy , many people used it and they liked it ,so you may give it a try !


If you messed up your graphic in Ubuntu...
You no longer see any graphic but a black page with terminal (command prompt) ?
Don't get scared (terminal is not gonna bite you) , it is easy to recover , fix everything using commands .
cd /etc/X11/
Then
dir
this shows list of files in that folder
mv xorg.conf.backup xorg.conf
If your backup file name is diffrent change xorg.conf.backup , for exmple
mv xorg.conf.backup20070404 xorg.conf

To find out the name of the back up file just look at the list of files which "dir" command gave you.
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