linux n00b

How to break Feisty in 5minutes

Posted in Desktop by downforce on March 29, 2007

Here is something I don’t recommend:

sudo /etc/init.d/gdm stop 
sudo sh

I spent almost 3 hours last night trying to recover from it. I’m not 100% sure whether something went wrong or it just doesn’t work. I suspect the later based on some googling.

The error I was getting was something along the lines of:

API conflict, the kernel module installed is 1.0.75xx and the driver requires 1.0.97xx.

I tried so many different thing, none with any success using the nvidia driver. I installed nvidia-xsettings, which doesn’t help unless you are already IN X, nvidia-settings. I tried multiple reboots, re-installs. There is even an advanced option -K which is supposed to just install the kernel module.

It’s probably a good time to point out that I don’t actually know what a kernel module although my logic tells me that it’s a ‘module’ that plugs into the kernel so that ‘something’, be it hardware or driver can interact with the kernel.

OT: Well bugger me dead, there is a ‘lookup’ button on my wordpress. I decided to press it and entered kernel module. Here’s what I got … kernel module. So what do you know, I was right! Yay! I get a gold star! Actually is a pretty nifty site, I recommend it for dictionary searches etc.

So, back to the task on hand – this nvidia driver. Now I’m one of these people that while am quickly becoming a FOSS advocate, the fact nvidia has a binary driver, isn’t going to stop me using it, as long as it’s still ‘free’ as in I don’t have to pay for it, especially if it improves my 3D performance. I like to play my wine games! Not only that, I have 2 monitors and like to run TwinView. My primary screen is on the right HS and the 2nd screen on the left.

I keep digressing – So about the 1.5 hour mark I said ‘bugger it’ and gave up on sorting the binary issue. I tried to get back to the ubuntu default. Now who said this was any easier? I reset my xorg.conf with sudo dpkg-reconfigure xserver-xorg and loaded the boring vesa driver. This got me back into gnome. After scouring the menus, I found the restricted manager but it said I didn’t have any devices that required restricted modules – All my googling said I did!A wajig install nvidia-glx later I tried again and changed the driver to ‘nv’. Slightly more success – no TwinView but had 1280×960 res and some acceleration, the menus were blurring in and out as with vesa.

At this point I threw my dummy out of the pram, went and had a whinge to the wife and decided – screw this, I’m going to reinstall Feisty. And that’s what I did. Once it has installed I went straight to the restricted manager, enabled the nvidia driver, which wanted me to install linux-image-2.6.20-13-386 and it’s headers and nvidia-glx.

All up it took about 60min, 45min-ish to reinstall (of which about 15min was getting to the install stage!!) 15min to change the sources, pick my apps and then left it overnight to download 250mb and install 480mb of updates and additional apps. Most importantly, the nvidia driver is working!

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