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    NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts
    Contributed by fialar on Saturday, November 03 @ 22:29:25 GMT

    X Window
    I've been running X 4.1 ever since it hit woody. I also run the linux drivers from NVidia. (Version: 1.0-1541)

    Lately I've been seeing all kinds of weird video artifacts on my screen. Whether
    from switching workspaces, or things popping up on the screen. Has anyone else experienced these things? I'm wondering if I should downgrade to X v4.0x?
    Is there an easy way to do that? Or perhaps a way to somehow debug this problem?

    alp: I'd suggest buying a graphics card from a company that doesn't show malevolent contempt for Free Software developers. They have told the developers of XFree86 and DirectFB in no uncertain terms to get lost, with regards to supporting their hardware. No mainstream graphics card vendor has ever refused to release hardware specifications to the extent that NVidia has. If you insist on using its drivers, I recommend that you try Microsoft Windows, where they've been tested more thoroughly.

     
    Related Links

  • More about X Window
  • News by alp

    Most read story about X Window:
    New HOWTO: Installing XFree86 4.0.1 on Debian 2.2

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  • "NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts" | Login/Create Account | 64 comments
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    The comments are owned by the poster. We aren't responsible for their content.

    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 2, Troll)
    by Anonymous on Saturday, November 03 @ 22:55:50 GMT

    I agree with alp. Nvidia should be boycotted by the free software movement. Buy a card from Matrox or some other vendor that support free software instead.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 0)
    by Anonymous on Saturday, November 03 @ 23:17:41 GMT

    I agree with you all... I will now dispose of my ancient GeForce 256 SDR card from back in the windows days.. (I didn't know any better at the time, ok.. and being a poor student I don't have the money to exchange the card yet.)

    Up coming... a brand new Radeon 8500 (if Free software drivers are released... else an older Radeon, one of those DRI supported bastards...)

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 1, Insighful)
    by hobbes on Sunday, November 04 @ 01:57:13 GMT
    (User Info)

    NVidia supports the free software movement by providing drivers for linux.

    A closed driver is better than no driver at all. The cards are very good, the drivers now work really well, and are perfectly integrated in debian (although non-free).

    Yes I would prefer open drivers (although I couldn't even understant what it do), but I understand they have legal reasons for being unable to release them.

    --

    Hobbes

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 0)
    by Anonymous on Sunday, November 04 @ 04:52:09 GMT

    For varying values of "really well", maybe. They're still flaky on some systems. Some people have great success with them, others have nothing but failure. AFAIK nVidia's drivers still can't be used on SMP systems. Their Linux drivers are still far from "perfect".

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 2, Informative)
    by jaldhar on Sunday, November 04 @ 06:59:31 GMT
    (User Info)

    This is not true as a blanket statement. My system has BP6 motherboard with dual 450MZ Celerons and the NVidia drivers work fine.

    This is not to say other people might not have SMP related problems though.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 1, Informative)
    by Anonymous on Sunday, November 04 @ 08:54:48 GMT

    Damn, so I guess I am just imagining that last 2 nvidia cards I have owned (Geforce2MX & Geforce2 GTS) worked perfectly on my SMP box (bp6 + oc'd celeron mendocino) Besides, Nvidia has said time and again, "We do not own all the technology in our drivers, what we do not own, we cannot release as open source" and that makes sense to me.

    and I am running xf4.1 with nvidia drivers 1.0-1541, and I see no artifacts in X or in my opengl games

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 1)
    by Gavin on Friday, November 09 @ 09:54:37 GMT
    (User Info)

    this whole story is a troll.

    my geforce 256 works perfectly on my dual 933Mhz via chipset at 4xAGP + sideband addressing + fast writes

    I had to edit the kernel driver module SOURCE to get those features

    I guess it's easier to blame it on the company than RTFM

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 1, Insighful)
    by Anonymous on Saturday, November 03 @ 23:53:28 GMT

    True, it would be nice to support vendors who play nicely with free software developers. But what about the thousands of people who own NVidia products and use free software? Isn't it counter-productive to point those users away from free software?

    Instead, why not try the open source nv driver that ships with X 4.x?

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 1, Insighful)
    by Anonymous on Sunday, November 04 @ 00:40:19 GMT

    Hmm. At the risk of being flamed into oblivion, I actually think perhaps the free software community ought to be more willing to allow proprietary drivers. Let's face it, some people just ARENT going to want to release driver specs. In some cases driver architecture could make the critical difference between your product and a competitor's product and for a technical reason, not a marketing reason. Companies exist to compete and make money. I dont think we're going to be seeing a Free Hardware movement anytime soon so perhaps for now at least closed drivers ought to be supported.

    Having said that I was seriously impressed by Debian's handling of my nV Geforce2. The kernel-package infrastructure is something that simply does not exist in other distros... admittedly it requires the source for the kernel module in question but it's a start. XFree4's driver architecture is certainly an improvement too. Perhaps a concrete driver ABI for linux should be defined (and I keep thinking that more bits of X4 ought to be moved into the kernel, something like an accelerated /dev/fb... then again I'm not a kernel hacker so I wouldnt know), that, I think, would help a lot.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 0)
    by Anonymous on Sunday, November 04 @ 01:11:21 GMT

    Let's face it, some people just ARENT going to want to release driver specs.

    Let's face it, we just AREN'T going to deal with those cards then.

    Also, there is already an accelerated framebuffer (since 2.2), and parts of X have been moved into the kernel (since X4).

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 0)
    by Anonymous on Sunday, November 04 @ 01:14:12 GMT

    I'll continue to use NVIDIA products. Why? Because they are simply the best products on the market today. And the company is not dishonest like ATI is. I think this is the predominant view among any of us who play q3 :-).

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 0)
    by Anonymous on Monday, November 05 @ 06:27:59 GMT

    You have the freedom to chose and you will not be supported. that's all. no one cares your 'why'.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: -1, Redundant)
    by hobbes on Sunday, November 04 @ 01:59:06 GMT
    (User Info)

    Let's face it, I'm dealing with such a card right now, and it works perfectly with my debian box to play CLOSED games or work with CLOSED software.

    --

    Hobbes

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 0)
    by Anonymous on Monday, November 05 @ 06:26:39 GMT

    So what? some company just don't want to replease

    their binary software, for example... MS. So? We just stop using it. It is the whole point of free software movement. If you think it is just free beer warez, well... no one cares whatever you think.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 0)
    by Anonymous on Sunday, November 04 @ 00:47:08 GMT

    Instead, why not try the open source nv driver that ships with X 4.x?

    because you can't use the 3d capabilities with that driver.

    I already have my nVidia card, I hate the company, but I'm not going to put myself out a few hundred to get a new 3d card.

    It's a pain, because I love to game, so I need to have a good card with 3d support.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: -1, Troll)
    by Anonymous on Sunday, November 04 @ 04:54:42 GMT

    So far you can't use flat-panel displays with nVidia boards using the 'nv' driver either. Makes it hard for those who are running Linux on PPC, or FreeBSD, or another OS that's not covered by nVidia's binaries.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 1, Insighful)
    by Anonymous on Sunday, November 04 @ 15:34:33 GMT

    I am using a Dell 17" flat panel with the nv driver running Debian and FreeBSD.

    Didn't notice that you can't use it so far.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 4, Insighful)
    by Anonymous on Sunday, November 04 @ 01:32:45 GMT

    the problem here is that people whinge about the closed source nature of these drivers without really thinking about it. sure it's bad, it means that hundreds of people who would have liked to poke at the drivers and submit patches can't. oh well. damn.

    however, what you have to keep in mind is that nvidia don't OWN all of the hardware that goes into their chipsets. several parts of the technology used is based on technology that other companies have leased them. if they released the specifications, they'd probably be sued into oblivion by the people who leased them that technology

    nvidia's development model relies heavily on this method of leasing technology. they deliberately use this method, so they can have as close to a yearly release cycle for next generation chipsets. they don't have to develop all of the technology inhouse. asking them to destroy their own business for the sake of your piece of mind is not going to help anyone.

    now. while we're at it, can someone find a driver that's COMPLETE and is being developed at a decent rate for any other card, and still approaches the performance nvidia have been giving out? and yes, i mean both hardware and software, and that leaves matrox out.

    That basically leaves an ati card. ati cards are EXTREMELY expensive where i live. nvidia based cards are not, and from what i hear, the ati driver is still missing a few features that i consider important, and their release cycle looks like they'll be miles behind when the next games come out in a years time. doom 3? quake 4? id intend to put those out for linux, but they're going to drop linux completely if the hardware and drivers aren't up to scratch. the geforce 3 is supposed to be the BASE line of 3d power for these games.

    perhaps i'm going to look like a heretic here, but WHO GIVES A FUCK about your morals? ultimately, i use linux because it gives me the power to get my work done. i'm not going to go out and buy windows just to play games, i'll do that right where i am, and that's linux. if i end up having to play quake3 while everyone else plays quake4 or doom 3, then that's just going to piss me off, and it's not going to help linux push windows off the desktop market. and while we're at it, the only real reason to get 3d drivers working is more often than not, to play proprietary closed source 3d games. do you send scathing letters to loki telling them to opensource the software they publish? (note, publish. the software they produce inhouse, such as openAL, their setup utilities, etc are all opensource iirc) they'd never make any money, and games would never have happened at all, even to this limited extent.

    so swallow your damned pride, and keep your opinions to yourself. you may not want to use nvidia products, and that's fine, but sounding off when you either don't know all the facts, or are more interested in pushing a line that scares people away isn't going to help anyone.

    that said, as for his problem, i'd be inclined to grab a friends card and test it in his box, as that sounds like a hardware problem, and nothing to do with the fact that the drivers are closed source. oh. and sorry for the rant, but this issue pisses me off, since most of the time, the morons with this idealistic nature don't have the technical ability to actually work on the driver anyway, and expect opensource to be a savior of all their problems.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: -1, Troll)
    by Anonymous on Sunday, November 04 @ 02:49:55 GMT

    well said. well said.

    I think someone should boot that alp guy right the fuck off this site, what a goddamn troll.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 0)
    by Anonymous on Sunday, November 04 @ 08:15:23 GMT

    Amen.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 0)
    by Anonymous on Monday, November 05 @ 00:33:16 GMT

    Users like you are the reason why I say that so-called "pragmatists" are the biggest problem we have yet to face. You people would sell all our progress so far just to get your task done.

    Debian is here for a reason and it's not to repeat the mistakes of the past.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 0)
    by Anonymous on Sunday, November 25 @ 19:10:21 GMT

    And you so-called "idealists" are why everything bad in history ever happend.

    Nazism, Stalinism, modern art... All of the evil intellectual crap

    the world has had to put up with have been due to fundementalists who are so enamoured with

    a party line that they fail to see the realities of the situation at hand.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 0)
    by Anonymous on Monday, November 05 @ 06:31:53 GMT

    You use linux to have your work done but linux and debian are not created to meet that purpose. So who cares what's your reason. And stop whinning... We do not work for your pleasure.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 0)
    by Anonymous on Sunday, January 13 @ 18:39:16 GMT

    an anonymous idiot wrote:

    >> You use linux to have your work done but linux >>and debian are not created to meet that purpose. >>So who cares what's your reason. And stop >>whinning... We do not work for your pleasure

    in response i write:

    whats the point of an os then for u to sit down and look at it ??? stf up u idiot. thats the whole point of computers and os' to get what u want done. Personally i dont see the point of waiting till the next generation of graphics cards to come out before you have support for your driver, take the ati drivers for example yeah great their open source but most of the features of ati rage 128 fury chipsets(which i currently own still doesnt have tv out support) aint fully featured and ati are on radeon 8500 my next card will be a nvidia as atleast they provide hardware support to linux users of the this generation cards. If ati's support to the open source community is so good why is it so lagging ?? if they want to be taken serious for 3d accellerated work it would be advantageous for them to atleast have an onboard linux driver team to get the full out of their cards otherwise whats the point ?? i dont use windows and wont use windows but im not gonna buy a brand new graphics card to leave it in its wrappin and by that time its worthless to be able to use it on my linux box. All credit to the dri team for working so hard but so many different drivers for so many different graphics cards i dont blame the time it takes them but im no good at driver development so i cant stick my neck out and help them neither can most of us here.

    lets not forget also that nvidia is now partly owned by m$ so if m$ the anti competitve biatch decides to put pressure on no nvidia support for linux we all will be screwed.

    Yes open source software is a good thing but there is no such thing as open hardware and there wont be in the near future hardware takes money to develop and the components cost money. Its not software that can be written with no real overheads other than the programmers time. You know that to get good hardware u need to spend money. Now if the hardware manufacturer wants to release closed source this should be welcomed as its encouraging much greater hardware support. And it also improves linux acception in the mainstream. If anything the linux kernel should be modified to allow easy acces for hardware vendors to implement their drivers as easy as possible which may mean the end of anti-competitve tyrants such as m$, which currently meddle with most hardware vendors.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 2, Insighful)
    by Anonymous on Sunday, November 04 @ 01:42:20 GMT

    Wow, what a troll. I think NVidia makes EXCELLENT hardware, and I will continue to use their products AND Debian. The drivers work excellently for me, so I can't help the author of this question out. I'm sorry that NVidia feels like they need to protect the interests of their company. They could choose not to release drivers for Linux, but they are spending their company's money to make Linux more compatible for users of PC hardware, so I wouldn't go so far as to say that they are an enemy of free software. It's the economy, stupid.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 1)
    by Anonymous on Monday, November 05 @ 13:24:08 GMT

    Nvidia hardware DOES offer great performance and value - I love my GF2MX and the price I paid for it. Their drivers work fine for me, and they continue to invest the hard dollars to keep improving them. Obviously they could pull the rug at any time - but were they open source now they could revert to closed or just abandon linux support entirely - same risk.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 1, Insighful)
    by Anonymous on Sunday, November 04 @ 01:54:58 GMT

    This commentary shows the fundamental problem with open source, the immaturity and self superiority of the people involved. I'm sure there are good reason for it, being picked on can force one to create feelings of superiority to get through it, and living life through a RPG can lead to slower social development, and that to immaturity. However, if open source is ever to succeed then 'the community' must grow up and understand that the world doesn't revolve around them. There are many reasons why someone would have a nvidia card, and prefer linux. Why not help them out instread of scolding them

    Grow up.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 0)
    by Anonymous on Sunday, November 04 @ 22:14:07 GMT

    Help them out HOW? I see a bunch of posts saying "It works on my setup...". Thats the problem with closed source drivers. If it works in one machine and not another, it it quite hard to figure out why.

    Granted, it is not nice to point and laugh.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 0)
    by Anonymous on Monday, November 05 @ 06:35:22 GMT

    because your should grow up to understand that "the world doesn't revolve around them." ~= s/world/debian/ . And don't expect "Why not help them out instread of scolding them " simply becuase you want to use a closed sourced drive on a debian system. Grow up please and send your complain/tech support to nvidia.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: -1, Flamebait)
    by hobbes on Sunday, November 04 @ 02:10:06 GMT
    (User Info)

    Pushing people away from free soft is a very strange way to promote it.

    Furthermore, I'm very disappointed about alp's attitude as a debianplanet staff member (and I know you probably don't give a fuck about my disappointment). The kind of comment you made on that one didn't deserve space on the main page, but in the regular comment system, like any other "ranter". Be carefull not to use your position as a way to put your ideas before others. Debianplanet as a whole would suffer from such an attitude.

    For what I understand, nvidia has very valid legal reasons for not being able to release their specs (out-house protected technology). So long for the "malevolent contempt" that you invoke (btw without showing sources).

    As for the original poster's problem, I think your hardware might be the culprit there. I use the very same drivers and X system as yours, and I don't see any strange effect or glitch on my desktop, even if I switch modes "aggressively".

    Try it with another video card (with the same drivers)

    --

    Hobbes

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: -1, Redundant)
    by Anonymous on Sunday, November 04 @ 02:35:12 GMT

    The NVIDIA drivers on my box are stable as a rock, I never have any problem with them, NONE, they work as good as they do in windows. I would guess that you have a hardware problem (wow, that's redundant)....alp, I'm going to have to agree with most of the other posters here, NVIDIA IS a company that is trying to make a profit, and the world doesn't revolve around you. You should be down on your knees thanking them for spending the time and money to produce quality drivers in house. And if you have a problem with the drivers being closed (which is childish in the first place), then DON'T use them. Don't whine on the frontpage about it....

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 0)
    by Anonymous on Monday, November 05 @ 06:37:55 GMT



    Microsoft IS a company that is trying to make a profit, and the world doesn't revolve around you.

    And you should boot your windows and using windows xp. What's your point of using linux?

    [ Reply ]


    Keep your emotions out of technical discussions (Score: -1, Troll)
    by Anonymous on Sunday, November 04 @ 08:07:32 GMT

    If Nvidia truely had malevolent contempt for Free Software developers they wouldn't bother to support unix at all. However, that debate doesn't even belong in this discussion either way.

    The user asking the quesiton probably has a heat or ram problem. I know dozens of people using NVidia cards in Linux without fail. Is the user over-clocking any of their components? Is their power supply up to spec? When did the problem crop up? Downgrading X or the kernel is not too difficult.

    If DebianPlanet is going to host emotional social debates about what a company really thinks of developers, could that debate at least be put under its own catagory or something? Maybe I could turn on a Katz filter and then I'd have a reason to see if I can get this site to remember my login.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts and alp's comment (Score: -1, Troll)
    by Anonymous on Sunday, November 04 @ 08:50:48 GMT

    Thanks for your insightful comments alp. I won't be wasting my time with DebianPlanet anymore.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts and alp's comment (Score: 0)
    by Anonymous on Monday, November 05 @ 00:38:24 GMT

    Wow! You disagree with one staffer, so you're leaving the site?

    How do you cope with acid rain with a skin that thin?

    [ Reply ]


    fialar I can help you (Score: 1, Redundant)
    by bahamat on Sunday, November 04 @ 10:36:43 GMT
    (User Info)

    I'm using an nvidia gforce2, x 4.1 and sid. I'm using the nvidia 1.0-1251 drivers and I don't have any problems. If you need a copy of the drivers let me know. All my contact info is in my user profile.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 2, Informative)
    by Siax on Sunday, November 04 @ 11:44:30 GMT
    (User Info)

    I think I had a similar problem with NVIDIA drivers. I can't rember when it happened but when I upgraded the drivers and/or X it did it.

    I have a Super Socket 7 m/b and a Geforce 2 MX and apparently its quiet usual for this set up to have problems (Power problems or something). On my dual boot system windows used to have similar problems to linux, screen corruption etc, until I turned off some AGP thingy in directx, so I decided linux might be solved with a similar thing.

    So I added in no agp in the device section of /etc/X11/XF86config-4. Still had problems so I turned off XAA and some other form of render acceleration. Using:

    Option "NoAccel" "1"

    Option "NoRenderAccel" "1"

    This seemed to make in nice and stable and not have artifacts, but stopped XAA so was nice and slow and stopped certain things like wine and mplayer and some other apps.

    But X was nice and stable so I was happy. I recently thought well I might as well try it again, which I did and it actually worked nicely, but only when I enabled AGPGART support. I don't know if this would help, as I don't know if you are using AGP, but turning off render acceleration might solve the problem, as it sounds similar.

    As for all this anti non-free drivers, non-free drivers are better than no drivers, and if you want to use open source drivers you can use the nv ones. And someones gonna read that as me critising the nv driver, but I'm not.

    Enough of my jabbering

    Toby

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 1, Insighful)
    by Anonymous on Sunday, November 04 @ 12:28:29 GMT

    I don't think alp should be flamed away here...though he writes in a way not everybody likes, he _does_ have a point.

    Some people here say that NVidia can't release their drivers under a GPL-compatible license. There surely might be reasons not to do that, but I don't think they _can't_ do it. Why can Matrox give enough information do develop stable open-source drivers? Why can ATi? Why can't NVidia?

    Though some consider Free Software a goal, it's a way to better software too. The famous story about everyone being able to solve bugs and so on. As it is now, linux-developers (be it kerneldevelopers or others), get problems because of NVidia's drivers. They can't solve them (how would they be able to solve them without the source of all problems, litteraly?) and debian (or linux as a whole) gets a bad fame for driver support, though it's not the fault of the linux-developers. That's a problem and one of the reasons Alan Cox started the EXPORT_LICENCE thingie in the kernel.

    One last problem to mention is that someone using closed-source drivers makes it harder to develop open-source variants (I guess RMS would agree on this). Software only gets better with a large user base.

    That being said, alp could have written it a bit more subtile...

    [note: not knowing about the problems when I bought it and being short on money, I have a NVidia TNT2 M64 myself.]

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: -1, Redundant)
    by hobbes on Sunday, November 04 @ 14:25:27 GMT
    (User Info)

    Yes he has a point, but there is no reason for that comment to be on the main page.

    Furthermore, it's true that open source drivers would be better, we all know that (I guess), but closed drivers are better than no driver at all. The reason for not opening them could be NDA agreements between NVidia and some upper stream company from which they rent some technologies. It could also be protected by patents,... There are myriads of legal reasons for not being able to release the specs of those cards (I don't know if they can't or if they don't want).

    And last, those cards are great, and the linux drivers, although closed, are rock stable on my system and match the windows ones for speed.

    --

    Hobbes

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 0)
    by Anonymous on Sunday, November 04 @ 17:12:38 GMT

    Yes he has a point, but there is no reason for that comment to be on the main page.
    No. That comment can be there. It just should be a bit better formulated.

    Furthermore, it's true that open source drivers would be better, we all know that (I guess), but closed drivers are better than no driver at all.
    That could be debated...if the absence of closed-source drivers would help to develop open-source ones, then it might be better not to have closed-source drivers, isn't it? It's the difference between short-term thinking an long-term.

    The reason for not opening them could be NDA agreements between NVidia and some upper stream company from which they rent some technologies. It could also be protected by patents,... There are myriads of legal reasons for not being able to release the specs of those cards (I don't know if they can't or if they don't want).
    True. There might be patents, there might be tons of problems. But why does NVidia have them, not ATi or Matrox? That's why I think that they simply don't _want_ to open-source their drivers.

    And last, those cards are great, and the linux drivers, although closed, are rock stable on my system and match the windows ones for speed.
    Great? Well, they're fast at 3D, but that's about it. Image quality is bad (especially the GF2 is known for that) and their dual-monitor solution is still behind the one Matrox developed (well, that's what I hear at least. I don't have two monitors).
    Rock stable? I doubt that. On some systems they work pretty well, it seems. But there're systems where they don't even want to work, let alone be stable. I got about three crashes this week. That's way too often, in my opinion.
    Question: what are you going to do if NVidia stops developing drivers for linux? As they're compiled for each kernel, they probably won't continue to work with 2.6/3.0 and you would be without a driver. Nobody can do something about that. An open-source driver wouldn't have such problems.

    [note: I have to use the drivers myself, as I got to watch some movies (and like to play tuxracer :)) and they were just terribly slow with the nv-module.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: -1, Flamebait)
    by hobbes on Monday, November 05 @ 10:40:44 GMT
    (User Info)

    Alp's comment is a rant and deserves no space on the main page. What deserves space on the main page are comments that add real usefulle information to the post, which is not the case here. I think it should not be on the main page, but in the usual comments, with the rest of the others, but we cpould debate that hours without changing opinions, so let's stop it now.

    For the "closed is better or no than no driver", I agree that the situation you describe is THE example where a closed driver would do some harm, but I don't think that's the case here as there is no possibility to have a working open source 3D hardware accelerated driver. And yes I'm aware of the possibility that NVidia could stop developing that driver, but the possibility exists for every closed technology. And I use quite a number at home and work without too much trouble that far. (I know trouble could arise, but I have no other valid choice for most of them, so I simply live with it)

    Matrox doesn't have problem to release specs because they developed the technology in house. They are now so far away in terms of performance (not a troll, just the facts) that I think they didn't use really new technology in their new cards. Just enhanced what existed.

    Now between ATI and NVidia, they probably have different developpement models, with different sources for their respective technologies, so even if ATI is not bound, NVidia could well be. Now maybe they are not bound to anyone, but are not completely sure of that and so can't take the risk. I don't know, but I assure you that ATI being free to release specs doesn't mean that NVidia is also free. And as I don't know, maybe they simply don't want to release the specs now because they think it wouldn't bring them any real benefit (I don't know if it would) or bcaus it would bring them more trouble than good. I don't know and I don't say I do know. That's their choice.

    As for your problems with the drivers, I don't find the image quality bad at all, and many cards don't have the 2 monitors possibility (and many cards with the possibility are never hooked to a second monitor).

    Now for their stability, most people I know who use them are very satisfied. People who had problems could track it to a hardware problem in the card itself or the motherboard (the power supply sometimes). Have you tried to disable AGP, or to use AGPGART instead of NVidia's AGP ? Have you read the FAQ ? Have ou contacted their support ? Tried IRC with them ? Asked questions on DebianHelp ? Read the articles ? Come on, those drivers do have problems, as any drivers, but 3 crashes a week is way too much on any system. You have a configuration problem, or a hardware problem.

    --

    Hobbes

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 1, Informative)
    by Anonymous on Sunday, November 04 @ 13:24:06 GMT

    I was having problems too with X4.1 locking up periodically making the computer unusable. If you downgrade to version 1.0-1251 of the drivers it seems to fix the problem. The drivers are available in tar.gz form off ftp.nvidia.com

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 0)
    by Anonymous on Sunday, November 04 @ 19:15:24 GMT

    Try disabling the render acceleration with

    Option "NoRenderAccel" "1" In the XF86Config-4 file

    It solved the problem on my machine.

    [ Reply ]


    I used to have problems too (Score: 0)
    by Anonymous on Sunday, November 04 @ 15:36:41 GMT

    I forgot which X version and which nVidia release. The problem was my Geforce 2 MX was sharing an IRQ with some PCI card (SB64PCI 1370). The solution was to shuffle some PCI cards (trial & error) until it had its own IRQ.

    [ Reply ]


    On NVidias support for Free Software (Score: 4, Insighful)
    by leif on Sunday, November 04 @ 16:51:34 GMT
    (User Info)

    It is simply wrong that Nvidia shows malevolent contempt for Free Software developers. They did (or do?) actually support the development of the nv driver, which is Free Software that is included in Xfree86. Of course the nv driver is only 2d, so it sadly doesn't give you as much speed (esp. in games) as those drivers directly from nvidia, but it shows that nvidia doesn't totally hate or ignore Free Software.

    I would be very happy if they would release their own drivers as Free Software too, but obviously they don't plan to. If this is because of NDAs they signed, then to me this stresses the evil of NDAs and shows how much better it would be if Free Software where more widespread, but:

    At the moment I do not see any reasons to point your fingers too much at nvidia. When I bought a card by them, I knew that there is no free driver for it, so I willingly decided that this would be a unfortunate compromise. I cannot blame them now afterwards. I knew and so should everybody else who buys their cards.

    marko

    [ Reply ]


    Re: On NVidias support for Free Software (Score: 1)
    by Anonymous on Sunday, November 04 @ 22:14:12 GMT

    i'd be interested in seeing where exactly it's shown that nvidia had malevolent contempt for XFree86.(links to email archives or whatever will satisfy me) and even then, i'd be interested to know exactly what they were responding to (if it was anything like alp's statement, i'd have said the same thing, i'm willing to bet.)

    go ask Mark Vojkovich. he's an XFree86 coder, he's been working on XFree86 for some time, yet he now works for nvidia, and uses his nvidia.com email address. i'm fairly certain HE doesn't have "malevolent contempt"

    don't forget that we're in a niche market. that puts us largely at nvidia's mercy, and without nvidia, linux gaming WILL DIE. ati won't be able to pick up the pace, and several people i know who work at nvidia will be unemployed.

    you people may not care about that. i do.

    oh. and one other thing. how do you make a boycott not look like a lack of interest? how does nvidia know that ati's sales are a direct result of you not liking nvidia's drivers. it's just as easy to say "the linux market is dead, lets drop it" and then we'll get nothing out of them. ever.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: On NVidias support for Free Software (Score: 0)
    by Anonymous on Monday, November 05 @ 06:43:31 GMT

    I am sorry, we only not at nvidia's mercy. we are only at MS' mercy because we are in a niche market. Beside, we are not creating a freewarez thing for you. We are creating a free software system.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 1, Insighful)
    by Anonymous on Sunday, November 04 @ 19:42:37 GMT

    I have had artifacts with my tnt2 and the drives from nV, and that was with X 4.0 and 4.1. Now I'm using the latest drivers and all seems well.


    I think open source should support an closed source software it can. This means more software for Linux, FreeBSD and any other open based systems out there. The open source community should embrace any software that comes to it, open or not. That more software and support there is the more popular open based systems will be.


    And here is another though. If you were a closed software company what would you want to here. "Open source your software or buzz off" or "Great, I love your software, I'm glad you ported it to Linux,BSD,.... By the way, here is a bug I found. Thanks again."

    [ Reply ]


    Flame alp all you want to... (Score: 2, Insighful)
    by Anonymous on Monday, November 05 @ 00:26:01 GMT

    I'm still not getting an nVidia card. nVidia outsourced a lot of technology, so they aren't legally allowed to release specs. On the one hand, they made a lot of money (most people don't care about free drivers), on the other hand, I'm not getting an nVidia card. I don't think that this will make much of a difference in their book keeping, but SFW. I'm happily living in the free world, and I don't need an nVidia card to enjoy life.

    alp, be nicer, though. Having a bad day?

    nVidia lovers; helping Fialar on this topic would've been a good way to make your statement.

    I'm still going to read DebianPlanet in the future.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: Flame alp all you want to... (Score: -1, Troll)
    by Anonymous on Monday, November 05 @ 00:43:53 GMT

    nVidia lovers can't help Fialar... they can only say "it orks for me" because they can't understand what it does (rm -rf / anyone?).

    [ Reply ]


    Re: Flame alp all you want to... (Score: 0, Informative)
    by hobbes on Monday, November 05 @ 10:49:51 GMT
    (User Info)

    There has been many suggestions to help Fialar :

    - hardware problem (easy, but glithes on the screen are most of the times hardware problems, not driver related)

    - upgrade to latest driver, which seems to have solved a similar problem

    - try different agp settings (nvidia, agpgart, no agp) This is in NVidia's FAQ.

    And even if NVidia's drivers were open, most people here (and even probably all) couldn't read them, let alone debug them and help Fialar. So your comment is quite moo.

    --

    Hobbes

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 3, Informative)
    by Anonymous on Monday, November 05 @ 01:12:26 GMT

    I run Debian unstable with XFree86 4.1 and the GeForce 3. I haven't looked at the source code that you get from NVidia, so I don't know which parts of the driver are open and which are closed-source, but if the part of the driver that is "closed" is just a binary that is uploaded to the card itself, I have no problem with that. Even Bruce Perens supports that kind of driver. If parts of the code that run as part of the kernel are binary-only, then I do have a problem with that, but not enough to run out and buy a new card. I like my GeForce 3.

    As for problems with XFree86 4.1, I had several problems making the NVidia drivers work well with XFree86 and also problems when I exited back from XFree86 to the console (the text was all messed up).

    Then I RTFM. 😉

    Check the NVidia instructions at this URL carefully:

    http://www.nvidia.com/docs/lo/1021/SUPP/README.txt

    Especially the part about removing these lines from your XF86Config-4 file:

    Load "dri"

    Load "GLcore"

    I also found that the drivers seem much more stable after I removed agpgart support from the kernel (actually, I made it a kernel module which I don't load by default), and then add this line to the XF86Config-4 file to tell XFree86 to use the NVidia agp support -- this won't work if you have agpgart compiled into your kernel or have the kernel module loaded:

    Option "NVAgp" "1"

    Here is the list including the other options...

    Option "NvAgp" "0" ... disables AGP support

    Option "NvAgp" "1" ... use NVAGP, if possible

    Option "NvAgp" "2" ... use AGPGART, if possible

    Option "NvAGP" "3" ... try AGPGART; if that fails, try NVAGP

    Try it on the chance the NVidia agp support is better than what's provided by the kernel, but RTFM like I did first to see if the NVidia agp supports your chipset. It supports mine.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 0)
    by Anonymous on Monday, November 05 @ 01:41:14 GMT

    Personally, I've had few problems with the drivers. They even run OK with a version mismatch between the kernel module and X driver!

    I did have graphics "phantoms" and X crashes when I first got the card - but the same sort of thing was happening in OpenGL games under windows. Card replacement by the shop, and all was fine.

    I did have some problems with the first build of X 4.1 in sid using the nvidia drivers, though. Got build 2 and it went away.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 1)
    by hobbes on Tuesday, November 06 @ 09:25:53 GMT
    (User Info)

    Where the hell are my comments?

    I posted several comments yesterday in that discussion, and I can see them on my profile's page, but I can see only one of them all in the threads.

    Is this a bug in DP's code or a feature ?

    --

    Hobbes

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 1)
    by hobbes on Tuesday, November 06 @ 13:03:49 GMT
    (User Info)

    Oh, sorry all, I just discovered the scoring system... So most of my comments here are scored flamebait... Even when they bring potential solutions to the original problem...

    So people flaming nvidia are considered usefull contributors, and people trying to explain are flamers...

    I don't know... maybe DP is not what it used to be...

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 1)
    by hobbes on Tuesday, November 06 @ 13:23:24 GMT
    (User Info)

    I just reviewed many posts here with my new knowledge of the scoring system, and it seems I was right : people flaming nvidia or giving false information about in what situation the drivers don't work (SMP, flat panel,...) are scored usefull contributors, while people contradicting them (because it works on SMP and flat panels) are scored -1 (Troll, Redondant, Flamebait,...). Even people bringing potential solutions to the original problem are considered flamebait.

    So I'd like comment on that fact from the moderators here (although this comment will soon be scored -1 and so disappear from most readers screens, see below).

    Knowing the default is to display articles scored 0 or more, the lambda user will see bad articles about nvidia and not the other side. Do you really think it qualifies as good moderating behaviour ?

    I'm really puzzled by your partial attitude regarding the nvidia drivers issue.

    --

    Hobbes

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 1)
    by hobbes on Tuesday, November 06 @ 13:45:59 GMT
    (User Info)

    uh oh, so long for my last comment. It might have been a DP or browser bug, or maybe I need a new brain, but now the scores seem to be better ballanced...

    Still hiding too much info from the casual reader I think, but the cleavage situation I describe might have been an effect of my overheated brain.

    Sorry all,

    --

    Hobbes

    PS I still think alp was wrong, but score this whole sub-thread as -2

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: -1, Troll)
    by Anonymous on Tuesday, November 06 @ 17:35:31 GMT

    Looks like the nvidia astroturfers are on a roll today. I couldn't have put this nvidia unpleasantness better than alp myself. The important thing to remember is that the company should be rejected by the Free Software community not because they produce proprietary drivers for a specific version of XFree86 that runs on a specific platform, but because they're not giving Free Software developers a chance to properly support their hardware.

    I think the poster made this very clear by mentioning DirectFB: It's a powerful display/windowing system that has the potential to revolutionize Linux on the desktop, and they shouldn't be in a position where they are held back. nvidia's binary drivers do not exist to them, and the following other types of Linux users:

    • Non Intel 32-bit systems
    • Linux 2.5 (when it comes out), future versions of XFree86
    • People developing new alternatives for display systems
    • Free Software people

    Just so you know the facts when you're moderating that pro-nvidia "works for me" bullshit. Wait and see how they look when they're still running XFree86 4.01 and Linux 2.4.7 in 2003 when nvidia has dropped support and we're all playing with our shiny new Free Software.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 0)
    by Anonymous on Tuesday, November 06 @ 21:39:42 GMT

    Nvidia supported XFree3, then XFree4. The driver works with kernel 2.2 and kernel 2.4. What makes you think they will drop support ? If they invested so much time and money in good linux drivers, I don't think they are ready to throw it all.

    And yes it's limited to Intel 32 bits platforms. But they are the great majority, and if you are not in that case, just don't buy an nvidia card. (or use the nv driver, which was developed in cooperation with nvidia).

    Even if they do drop support, I think I'll need a new card in 2003 if I want to play new games... Linux is an os that lets you keep your hardware a long time if you want to (my 486 still rocks... well, sort of :-), but games and 3d apps are usually big hardware change incentives.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: -1, Troll)
    by Anonymous on Wednesday, November 07 @ 02:16:54 GMT

    Yes, you should use windows XP for game. why do you chose Linux? because of the buzzword?

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 0)
    by Anonymous on Wednesday, November 07 @ 11:06:23 GMT

    I don't get it, what's your point ? There is no need for hardware acceleration under linux because there are no games under linux ?

    Sorry, but linux is my main platform at home and that's not about to change. I use it for fun *and* work, and that of course includes 3d games (Chromium BSU, Descent3,...) but also 3d apps (blender, gears :-). And I still use windows for homebanking and games which are not available on linux, but I would switch to 100% linux the day those last tasks are possible there.

    It has nothing to do with the buzzword, I used linux before there was any buzz around it.

    Why are you so angry at people using closed nvidia drivers ? I've never seen anyone angry at people posting about db2 or oracle under linux, nor loki games or other closed software. It seems that of all the closed software companies, nvidia got all the bad press. And they are *not* a software company, they just produced those damn drivers.

    [ Reply ]


    nvidia supporters need to take a look at the big picture (Score: -1, Troll)
    by Anonymous on Tuesday, November 06 @ 17:36:14 GMT

    Looks like the nvidia astroturfers are on a roll today. I couldn't have put this nvidia unpleasantness better than alp myself. The important thing to remember is that the company should be rejected by the Free Software community not because they produce proprietary drivers for a specific version of XFree86 that runs on a specific platform, but because they're not giving Free Software developers a chance to properly support their hardware.

    I think the poster made this very clear by mentioning DirectFB: It's a powerful display/windowing system that has the potential to revolutionize Linux on the desktop, and they shouldn't be in a position where they are held back. nvidia's binary drivers do not exist to them, and the following other types of Linux users:

    • Non Intel 32-bit systems
    • Linux 2.5 (when it comes out), future versions of XFree86
    • People developing new alternatives for display systems
    • Free Software people

    Just so you know the facts when you're moderating that pro-nvidia "works for me" bullshit. Wait and see how they look when they're still running XFree86 4.01 and Linux 2.4.7 in 2003 when nvidia has dropped support and we're all playing with our shiny new Free Software.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: NVidia Drivers and X 4.1 and artifacts (Score: 0, Informative)
    by Anonymous on Wednesday, November 07 @ 05:48:24 GMT

    I'm the one who said I RTFM --- I take it all back, I started noticing weird artifacts today with my GeForce 3. I don't have time to debug it right now, so I changed it back to the default nv driver that comes with XFree86. So much for RTFM...

    By the way, The riva framebuffer modes don't seem to work with the GeForce 3, either...they worked fine with my GeForce 2.

    [ Reply ]


    Re: How DID all you guys get the nvidia module to install? (Score: 0)
    by Anonymous on Tuesday, February 05 @ 14:53:11 GMT

    - I get a warning about "non-GPL". I know it's not gpl but I'd still like to install the module.

    - It compiles OK but after the compilation and warning message 'lsmod' doesn't list the nv module

    (is it under an obscure name by any chance?)

    so,

    How do I override the warning?

    (kernel 2.4.17-k7 installed from debian mirror, GCC 2.95, Woody. Kernel Headers installed, as I said it's actually compiiled ok)

    [ Reply ]


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