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Old 08-13-10, 03:50 AM   #1
littlebigman
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Question Adding nVidia driver to liveCD?

Hello

The liveCD I'm using probably doesn't contain the nVidia binary drivers (GeForce 6150 LE rev a2, in this case), which would explain why it can't run X in a higher resolution than 800x600.

Does someone know how to add the nVidia drivers to the ISO image of a liveCD?

Thank you.
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Old 08-13-10, 07:03 AM   #2
Seven of Nine
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Default Re: Adding nVidia driver to liveCD?

Theoretically it's just a matter of building the right modules using that kernel and headers, and including them in the ISO file. Because of licensing "problems" many distributions choose not to.
The alternative open-source nvidia driver "nouveau" should be able to handle your card just fine aswell. Nouveau is enabled in many kernels and live discs, including Fedora. Although the 3d library is usually left out because of stability issues, you can run a desktop at all the resolutions your monitor supports. Should you find that you are running nouveau and are not getting the resolutions you need, these forums are not the right place to ask. Check nouveau.freedesktop.org for more information on that.
It will probably be easier to find a live disc with nouveau enabled than building one with nvidia.
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Old 08-13-10, 06:03 PM   #3
littlebigman
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Default Re: Adding nVidia driver to liveCD?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Seven of Nine View Post
The alternative open-source nvidia driver "nouveau" should be able to handle your card just fine aswell. Nouveau is enabled in many kernels and live discs, including Fedora.
Thanks much for the tips. I'll try compiling both version (nVidia or Nouveau), and see how it goes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Seven of Nine View Post
It will probably be easier to find a live disc with nouveau enabled than building one with nvidia.
There is a closed-source application on this liveCD that I need, so I figured it'd be an easier work-around to download and compile the same version of the Linux kernel, and just replace whatever files make up a fully-working Linux distro.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Seven of Nine View Post
Theoretically it's just a matter of building the right modules using that kernel and headers, and including them in the ISO file.
Do you know what files I need to copy/paste into the ISO before burning a new CD? Or any good documentation on Ubuntu 9.10 that would explain what files do what and which ones I need?

Thank you.
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Old 08-15-10, 10:07 AM   #4
hhg42
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Default Re: Adding nVidia driver to liveCD?

I do it at runtime. I am running Xubuntu Maverick live cd. The trick is to force the nouveau driver module not to load by using the "nouveau.blacklist=true" kernel boot parameter when the cd (or cd image on dvd, which is much faster) boots.

Once I have it running without that module loaded the procedure is almost identical to the one described on the "https://help.ubuntu.com/community/NvidiaManual" web page. The obvious difference being that I cannot reboot. Another difference is that I install the ia32-libs package or the Xubuntu-restricted-extras package before I run the nvidia installer.

The newest version of the nvidia factory driver (256.44, for Geforce > 5) detects the nouveau module, if loaded, and attempts to modify the configuration files so that it will not be loaded on the next boot. That does not help me for the reason mentioned in the previous paragraph.


root@ubuntu:~/Desktop# uname -a
Linux ubuntu 2.6.35-14-generic #20-Ubuntu SMP Fri Aug 6 22:28:24 UTC 2010 x86_64 GNU/Linux
root@ubuntu:~/Desktop# uptime
14:58:29 up 5 days, 20:47, 10 users, load average: 0.78, 0.76, 0.72
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Old 08-16-10, 06:15 PM   #5
littlebigman
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Default Re: Adding nVidia driver to liveCD?

Thanks for the infos. I'll see how hard it is to go from a standard Xubuntu liveCD, and add the application I need + Nouveau driver.
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Old 08-19-10, 10:14 AM   #6
hhg42
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Default Re: Adding nVidia driver to liveCD?

A power failure rebooted me this morning after 10 days of diskless operation

I can no longer install the 256.44 driver while running the latest xubuntu maverick build using the procedure above. Now I must boot with the nouveau.blacklist=true kernel boot parameter, install the 256.44 driver using the ubuntu-supplied installer, and relog using the logout menu item. It is much easier now but i would rather use the nvidia installer.
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Old 08-19-10, 11:06 AM   #7
primerib
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Default Re: Adding nVidia driver to liveCD?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Seven of Nine View Post
Theoretically it's just a matter of building the right modules using that kernel and headers, and including them in the ISO file. Because of licensing "problems" many distributions choose not to.
The alternative open-source nvidia driver "nouveau" should be able to handle your card just fine aswell. Nouveau is enabled in many kernels and live discs, including Fedora. Although the 3d library is usually left out because of stability issues, you can run a desktop at all the resolutions your monitor supports. Should you find that you are running nouveau and are not getting the resolutions you need, these forums are not the right place to ask. Check nouveau.freedesktop.org for more information on that.
It will probably be easier to find a live disc with nouveau enabled than building one with nvidia.
Everything I've heard of that the Nouveau driver is very immature. There's also no vdpau on their roadmap which is a huge drawback imo. Maybe someone with experience using the driver can comment further?
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Old 08-19-10, 07:47 PM   #8
Seven of Nine
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Default Re: Adding nVidia driver to liveCD?

Quote:
Originally Posted by primerib View Post
Everything I've heard of that the Nouveau driver is very immature. There's also no vdpau on their roadmap which is a huge drawback imo. Maybe someone with experience using the driver can comment further?
Nouveau can be considered mature on several aspects. It's 2D performance for instance is higher than the closed-source nvidia driver. On the other hand there is no support for accelerated video or power management (as in... backscaling the GPU clock speeds), and it's 3d performance is not as high as the official driver. It's stable for cards older than the G2xx series as long as you're not talking 3D. Everything else is a work in progress. Currently, if you want the best of the best from your card you should use the official driver. For ease of use Nouveau is a fine alternative, and it certainly is much better then the "nv" driver.
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