NVIDIA issues fixed on Fedora 16

This week, I upgraded from Fedora 15 to Fedora 16 on my Dell XPS M1530 laptop. This laptop has a 256 MB NVIDIA 8600M GT graphics card. The default driver for NVIDIA cards that came with the installation was nouveau. Nouveau is an open source driver for NVIDIA graphics cards and is under development. Things are becoming better and better with nouveau.

I ran gnome-shell for some time with the nouveau driver. 3d rendering worked nicely and without any latency. I did not find any other issue except for some overheating issues. So, I decided to switch to the NVIDIA’s proprietary driver.

Here is a good tutorial to disable nouveau and install NVIDIA’s proprietary driver in Fedora 16: http://www.if-not-true-then-false.com/2011/fedora-16-nvidia-drivers-install-guide-disable-nouveau-driver/

But, this would work perfectly if this was for Fedora 15. Fedora 16 comes with glibc-2.14.90-14 and the NVIDIA proprietary driver (the latest stable driver as of now is NVIDIA-Linux-x86-285.05.09.run). This issue has been reported at https://bugzilla.redhat.com/show_bug.cgi?id=737223. The issues I faced after installing the proprietary NVIDIA driver in my Fedora 16 machine were:

  • window manager behaving sluggishly
  • tab switch in applications like gnome-terminal, nautilus browser taking around 3-4 seconds (no such issues with KDE’s konsole)
  • System getting overheated
  • Increased latency in gnome-shell effects
  • Similar issues with window manager and tab switch on XFCE too

I guess everything depended on glibc were affected.

This issue could be fixed  by downgrading glibc to  glibc-2.14.90-4. I tried to do this to find that there are quite a few applications depended on glibc-2.14.90-14 in F16. So, I gave up the idea. I was looking for nvnews for any news from NVIDIA about fix for the above issue. And I came across this thread http://www.nvnews.net/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=122606 where I found about the current releases of NVIDIA graphics driver and the beta driver at http://www.nvnews.net/vbulletin/showthread.php?p=2498046. I was desperate enough to try the beta driver. I did:

and then follow through the on screen instructions.

  • # init 5

and logged in. To my surprise, everything was perfect this time. No latency in gnome-shell, no overheating issue. Everything is just fine. Now, I have been running gnome-shell on Fedora 16 in my laptop for over 24 hours. I did not find any issue with the NVIDIA beta graphics driver so far.


18 thoughts on “NVIDIA issues fixed on Fedora 16

  1. I’ve got the same laptop, and I believe, the same card. I’m using nouveau though. Is there anything I’m missing out on by not moving to the proprietary driver?

    • Well, as I already said, 3d rendering with nouveau has become a lot better. I do not use it because my system gets overheated. If you do not face any such issue, then it is fine to use nouveau. I should add this that nouveau is faster than the proprietary driver, especially, when it comes to showing the login screen.

  2. Hi rtnpro,
    Thanks for taking time to explain your install.
    I have a clean fedora 16 install with a quadro 600 card installed. I would like to install the driver you installed above.
    Do you know if there is a upto date step by step tutorial that runs through from start to finish from disabling nouveau to final install using the latest links. I am new to Linux and I feel I could be missing some key steps! Currently getting errors: Failed to search for file: Invalid input passed to daemon: char ‘$’ in text!

    Many Thanks

    • Hi Mark,
      You are not supposed to type ‘$’ or ‘#’ in the commands I wrote in my post. Actually, ‘$’ is the shell prompt when you are a normal user (non administrative user) and ‘#’ is the shell prompt when you become a super user. Try again now, I think you will be able to do it. If you still find any error, ping me 🙂


  3. I also installed the nvidia beta rpm from rpmfusion repo, but it has problems with flash. some times i have to restart the browser to watch youtube videos. and youtube videos just get stuck , same with swf files and i have to restart or refresh the page to view the video again . (or swf files)

  4. I’ve got a Dell XPS 15, with an integrated Intel chip, and a discrete Nvidia 525M graphics card, running Nouveau.
    I just want to know, if by installing the proprietary driver I gain anything significant (will it manage the two cards switching better, etc)?

    I have to say, that I’ve already tried installing the proprietary driver twice, and my computer has had near-death experiences. 😉

    • That’s the issue with proprietary dirvers. You have no idea what’s going on in the background. Nouveau driver is still under development. But it is becoming better and better. The last time I used it, it worked pretty well with Gnome3 shell and KDE. But I had only one issue with it, my system got overheated. I am not certain why it happened, but switching to NVIDIA’s proprietary driver fixed the overheating issue for me.

  5. I was having problems with Fedora 16. My laptop has an Nvidia Geforce 425 m, and NVIDIA-Linux-x86_64-290.10 driver. I was having a sluggish performance with Gnome 3 (For instance when wanting to display the running applications by clicking the windows button on your keyboard or moving your mouse cursor to the top left of your screen). The GPU was running at 66 Degrees all the time, and my VGA card fan was producing so much noise same as it would normally do when I’m running a 3D application such as an intense game. I was using the PowerMizer in adaptive mode as well.
    I uninstalled the driver, and installed the NVIDIA-Linux-x86_64-295.09-no-compat32 which is still in Beta. So far, my GPU temperature dropped to an average of 54 degrees. The Gnome 3 is no longer sluggish as well, and I could barely hear the GPU cooler.

    • Hi Mouhammed I’ve found myself in the same situation, would you mind sharing how to uninstall the driver and how to install the one you pointed out?


  6. Hey Matt,

    1- First of all I need to know if you’re using the Nouveau drivers which is the open source driver for Nvidia cards, or if you’re using Nvidia’s proprietary drivers.
    If you have the Nouveau driver, make sure to follow the steps in this link (Only consider the parts that tell you how to disable the Nouveau driver):

    2- -After making sure that Nouveau is disabled ( in case it was enabled), go to the Geforce page:

    3- Choose your video card series, and choose the correct Operating System from the list of Operating Systems (Linux 32-bit or Linux 64-bit depending on your system) and download the latest driver from Nvidia (The Beta version I had is the current release version)

    4- Now open a terminal window and issue the command “init 3” which will log you out from the X-Server session, and drop you to the terminal window.

    5- Make your way to where you have downloaded the driver and issue the following command:
    sh YOUR_NVIDIA_DRIVER_FILENAME.sh –uninstall

    6- The previous step will make sure you uninstall any Nvidia proprietary drivers that could exist on your machine.

    7- Now issue this command:

    8- Reboot your machine by issuing the reboot command:

    Let me know if you have any further questions.

    Good luck.

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