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Old 08-24-05, 08:05 AM   #1
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Join Date: Aug 2005
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Lightbulb Debian and Nvidia installer - A solution

Hello all.
After been searching an answer for the problem of running or the nvidia-glx and nvidia-kernel on Debian or running the Nvidia installer for about four months (non-continuous work! :-)), I have finally found a solution. Hope it helps.

I have installed for the first time the Nvidia driver using the Nvidia installer on my box, a Athlon 2400 XP+ with a FX5200 TD, using Xorg (Debian etch/testing). Worked fine. But I have found a newer driver on the apt-get directory, and tried to install the driver (without uninstall the nvidia driver from the installer) via module-assistant. This method worked. But then, as dumb as can sound, I found a newer driver from nvidia, and tried to install. The version was 7174. It crashed all my installation of nvidia, and nothing worked anymore. I had to install again the driver from module-assistant, and now even this method did not work. So, I had to install first with module-assistant, and then run the nvidia installer to get my X working, but with no glx! What a mess. I've read in a lot of places that i cannot mix both, but now was too late. So, I uninstalled all the packages related to nvidia, and installed the latest driver from the nvidia installer. Booted, and nothing worked. So, i had to remove two files from my /etc/init.d: nvidia-glx and nviboot. after that, rerun the nvidia installer, reboot the system and... nothing. This almost drove me crazy. So, with almost all the pacience that i had left, I searched something in the xorg configuration that was possible to give me some errors. Finally, i found that composite extensions was habilited, and the nvidia driver version 7676 was not working with composite extensions, and xorg did not get up. I removed the composite extensions, and voila! Finally my x was running with glx extensions! What a mess.

Here is a short prescription for the procedure (if you don't want to get bored with the text up there):

To put the nvidia driver from nvidia site to work on debian,
1. remove ALL the packages related to nvidia from debian. This include nvidia-kernel-source and common, nvidia-glx, etc. If you are unsure about the nvidia packages, you can run 'dpkg -l | nvidia', and then 'apt-get remove' all the packages that are show.
2. remove, from etc/init.d the nviboot and nvidia-glx files. You have to remove the files from there, just altering the names will not work.
3. install with the nvidia installer from nvidia site. Remember that you have to quit the X to do this (and gdm/kdm/xdm). In debian, you can modify the /etc/X11/default-display-manager, commenting the line in this file. And you can kill x and the gdm with a root login, doing 'killall gdm'.
4. if you were running X before the procedure and/or the nvidia module is loaded, you have to unload the module to get X working right away. So you can do a 'modprobe -r nvidia' to remove the module, or you can do the step above and reboot the system. The new module will be working then. Don't forget do uncomment the default-display-manager to get gdm working on boot.
5. If you are using xorg and the composite extension is habilited, you have to remove it. some guys said that both worked fine, but I don't get both working on my machine. To remove, open /etc/X11/xorg.conf and comment the line 'Option Composite ' 'Enable' or just put 'Disable'.
6. do a "startx' or 'gdm' and hope it is all right!

See you soon.
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