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Old 07-09-2012, 05:55 PM   #16
nixblog
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If you get really stuck/desparate you may want to investigate disabling optimus in your BIOS, (pretty sure Dell's give you this option) and see if that gets you any joy. Maybe not what you want but at least it provides a starting point.
 
Old 07-09-2012, 07:49 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cascade9 View Post
Yes, it does. Dell XPS 15 L502x models with 'sandy bridge' CPUs and nVidia GPUs are all optimus setups.
I have a Dell XPS 17 (L702X), and I certainly DO NOT have Optimus. I ordered it this way. Yes, it has a Sandy Bridge i7 CPU, but it does not have a functioning IGP.

The first L702X laptops with the 3D-ready 1080p screen did not support Optimus, and that's what I have. I would have ordered an L501X with Nvidia-only graphics, but opted to wait after seeing that this 15" model didn't provide easy access to the hard drive.

output of lspci:
Code:
00:00.0 Host bridge: Intel Corporation Sandy Bridge DRAM Controller (rev 09)
00:01.0 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation Sandy Bridge PCI Express Root Port (rev 09)
00:16.0 Communication controller: Intel Corporation Cougar Point HECI Controller #1 (rev 04)
00:1a.0 USB Controller: Intel Corporation Cougar Point USB Enhanced Host Controller #2 (rev 05)
00:1b.0 Audio device: Intel Corporation Cougar Point High Definition Audio Controller (rev 05)
00:1c.0 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation Cougar Point PCI Express Root Port 1 (rev b5)
00:1c.1 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation Cougar Point PCI Express Root Port 2 (rev b5)
00:1c.3 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation Cougar Point PCI Express Root Port 4 (rev b5)
00:1c.4 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation Cougar Point PCI Express Root Port 5 (rev b5)
00:1c.5 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation Cougar Point PCI Express Root Port 6 (rev b5)
00:1d.0 USB Controller: Intel Corporation Cougar Point USB Enhanced Host Controller #1 (rev 05)
00:1f.0 ISA bridge: Intel Corporation Cougar Point LPC Controller (rev 05)
00:1f.2 SATA controller: Intel Corporation Cougar Point 6 port SATA AHCI Controller (rev 05)
00:1f.3 SMBus: Intel Corporation Cougar Point SMBus Controller (rev 05)
01:00.0 VGA compatible controller: nVidia Corporation Device 0dd6 (rev a1)
01:00.1 Audio device: nVidia Corporation Device 0be9 (rev a1)
03:00.0 Network controller: Intel Corporation Device 0091 (rev 34)
04:00.0 USB Controller: NEC Corporation uPD720200 USB 3.0 Host Controller (rev 04)
0a:00.0 Ethernet controller: Realtek Semiconductor Co., Ltd. RTL8111/8168B PCI Express Gigabit Ethernet controller (rev 06)

Last edited by Cheesesteak; 07-10-2012 at 12:32 AM. Reason: added output of lspci
 
Old 07-09-2012, 10:54 PM   #18
dbx
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dutch Master View Post
Have you tried installing the official nVidia driver?
No, but I can't count the number of times I've read "Don't install the proprietary drivers, do it the Debian way!" or words to that effect. I don't know any better, however it seems the consensus is to avoid the official nVidia drivers. Am I correct?
 
Old 07-09-2012, 10:56 PM   #19
Timothy Miller
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I vastly prefer the Nvidia drivers, and have been using them on multiple machines (2 desktops and 1 laptop) for several years.

That said, while Optimus is enabled, you won't get any Nvidia only drivers working without bumblebee.

And according to what you posted, you do indeed have Optimus:

Quote:
Originally Posted by dbx View Post
Code:
00:02.0 VGA compatible controller: Intel Corporation Sandy Bridge Integrated Graphics Controller (rev 09)
01:00.0 VGA compatible controller: nVidia Corporation Device 0df5 (rev a1)
That's exactly what my E6520 looked like also. I had to disable Optimus in the Bios since I wasn't in any mood to try Bumblebee.

Last edited by Timothy Miller; 07-09-2012 at 11:02 PM.
 
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Old 07-09-2012, 11:29 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbx View Post
No, but I can't count the number of times I've read "Don't install the proprietary drivers, do it the Debian way!" or words to that effect. I don't know any better, however it seems the consensus is to avoid the official nVidia drivers. Am I correct?
Especially when you are a newbie you can run into serious problems when you use the driver from the website. There are two things that can cause problems if you use that driver:
1. When you get an update for the kernel or X.Org the driver possibly may have to be recompiled. This will happen automatically when you install the drivers from the repositories, but since the drivers from the website circumvent the package management system you have to do that manually. This means that the system will start without GUI after such an update, which can be very difficult for a newbie to handle.
2. The driver replaces some libraries with own versions. This is handled by Debian's alternatives system when you use the driver from the repository. If you use the driver from the website the libraries are overwritten directly. If you now get a Mesa update, which will install the original libraries, your driver will break.
 
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Old 07-09-2012, 11:33 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TobiSGD View Post
Especially when you are a newbie you can run into serious problems when you use the driver from the website. There are two things that can cause problems if you use that driver:
1. When you get an update for the kernel or X.Org the driver possibly may have to be recompiled. This will happen automatically when you install the drivers from the repositories, but since the drivers from the website circumvent the package management system you have to do that manually. This means that the system will start without GUI after such an update, which can be very difficult for a newbie to handle.
2. The driver replaces some libraries with own versions. This is handled by Debian's alternatives system when you use the driver from the repository. If you use the driver from the website the libraries are overwritten directly. If you now get a Mesa update, which will install the original libraries, your driver will break.
This is also very true. Guess I'm just so used to re-running the driver installer after updates that I forgot it gets broken.
 
Old 07-09-2012, 11:58 PM   #22
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If I'm to proceed with Debian packages, where do I go from here?

I seem to have the headers, driver and kernel module aligned properly but X still refuses to start. What's missing? Is there something I need to to include in the xorg.conf file? Do these drivers even support cards with Optimus?
 
Old 07-10-2012, 12:01 AM   #23
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You have to install and configure Bumblebee.
 
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Old 07-10-2012, 12:04 AM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TobiSGD View Post
You have to install and configure Bumblebee.
Thank you, I'll get on it.
 
Old 07-10-2012, 12:11 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Timothy Miller View Post
That's exactly what my E6520 looked like also. I had to disable Optimus in the Bios since I wasn't in any mood to try Bumblebee.
Thats the best way to go IMHO unless you really want Bumblebee to work. Several people I know have chosen the easy option when faced with this.
 
Old 07-10-2012, 05:19 AM   #26
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According to the Debian Wiki page, the nvidia driver from the backports repo is ok for bumblebee.

http://wiki.debian.org/Bumblebee
 
Old 07-10-2012, 10:48 PM   #27
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Yeah, if you're going to go for Bumblebee, I'd definitely suggest using the Debian packages for the Nvidia drivers. No use complicating it even FURTHER than it already is.
 
Old 07-11-2012, 03:48 AM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cheesesteak View Post
I have a Dell XPS 17 (L702X), and I certainly DO NOT have Optimus. I ordered it this way. Yes, it has a Sandy Bridge i7 CPU, but it does not have a functioning IGP.
I just made a silly assumption that you would have said you were using a different model laptop to the OP....

Quote:
Originally Posted by Timothy Miller View Post
That's exactly what my E6520 looked like also. I had to disable Optimus in the Bios since I wasn't in any mood to try Bumblebee.
If there is a BIOS switch to force the nVidia GPU or disable optimus, its the easier way than using bumblebee. AFAIK the Dell XPS 15 L502x doesnt have that option.
 
Old 07-11-2012, 07:43 AM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbx View Post
No, but I can't count the number of times I've read "Don't install the proprietary drivers, do it the Debian way!" or words to that effect. I don't know any better, however it seems the consensus is to avoid the official nVidia drivers. Am I correct?
Yes, there is indeed a vocal group who claim the nVidia drivers to be bad, evil even. But that's not because the drivers are bad, on the contrary, the nVidia drivers were and are by far better then the OS community driver nouveau, especially for 3D stuff. But it's a "binary blob" that does not comply to the Debian Social Contract and is therefore banned by these Debian purists. Those with a more pragmatical approach just install the nVidia driver to get the most from their nVidia hardware. Besides, in Stable the kernel updates are scarce and far between, that's why it's called Stable in the first place!

But, one can beat even that, by compiling an even newer kernel from source (from the kernel.org guys) and have the nVidia driver compile itself against that It's what I do (kernel 3.1.3 on Squeeze but I could easily compile the current 3.4.4 kernel and reinstall the nVidia driver, should I choose so... )
 
Old 07-11-2012, 08:21 AM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dutch Master View Post
Yes, there is indeed a vocal group who claim the nVidia drivers to be bad, evil even. But that's not because the drivers are bad, on the contrary, the nVidia drivers were and are by far better then the OS community driver nouveau, especially for 3D stuff. But it's a "binary blob" that does not comply to the Debian Social Contract and is therefore banned by these Debian purists. Those with a more pragmatical approach just install the nVidia driver to get the most from their nVidia hardware. Besides, in Stable the kernel updates are scarce and far between, that's why it's called Stable in the first place!
I think you are mixing things up here. This is about installing the driver from NVidia's website compared to installing the same driver using the packages in the repository. this is not nvidia against nouveau.
 
  


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