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Old 06-17-2016, 10:01 AM   #1
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Thumbs up Help setting up Linux on an NVIDIA system


Hi guys, im having a really hard time setting up Ubuntu on my NVIDIA AMD computer, I'm not 100% sure the specs of my system as i built it like 7 years ago, but Im pretty sure its an NVIDIA nforce 730a motherboard. This will be my fourth attempt at a clean install. Basically every time it seems display issues happen. Black screens on reboot, weird blocky pixilation with a system freeze, errors saying "fatal system error has occurred" and complete freeze. I guess my question is how do I figure out what im doing wrong? My last attempt I went to play an internet flash video and got weird blocky pixilation and the system froze. I figured I needed a display driver so used the additional drivers in software and updates to install "NVIDIA binary driver version 340.96", it seemed to work, I rebooted and got a "fatal error" message asking me if I wanted to report, but the system was frozen and I couldn't do anything. I restarted manually, and it just kept either doing the same thing or booting to a black screen. I'm completely new to Linux and am trying my best to give it an honest go here but its proving very difficult and my lack of knowledge on Linux and Ubuntu is even making it hard to know what questions to ask, so I guess the question is, can anyone help me get my poor little Linux copy working correctly?

Edit:
Ok so I just did the fourth clean install, did nothing but let all the updates happen, restarted and now I'm looking at a black screen with a mouse curser I can control. What should I do from here?

Last edited by Siezed; 06-17-2016 at 10:04 AM.
 
Old 06-17-2016, 10:16 AM   #2
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I would recommend as a first try (if you manage to make it working with a fresh install of Ubuntu) do not make any updated in a first period. See if your machine is still as unstable as you mention. Be aware that Linux and NVidia are not in somes cases "not the bests friends". It can also be that your hardware have some problems. 7 Years old in not that young. Is the bios battery still ok ? If not it would means that the bios is reloading all the defaults settings and in some cases they are not always the bests ones.
 
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Old 06-17-2016, 10:41 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by tnut View Post
I would recommend as a first try (if you manage to make it working with a fresh install of Ubuntu) do not make any updated in a first period. See if your machine is still as unstable as you mention. Be aware that Linux and NVidia are not in somes cases "not the bests friends". It can also be that your hardware have some problems. 7 Years old in not that young. Is the bios battery still ok ? If not it would means that the bios is reloading all the defaults settings and in some cases they are not always the bests ones.
Thank you for the reply, and yes one of my attempts i did not allow any updates to happen and it was still not working properly, my bios saves settings between shutdowns so i believe the battery is fine. Before this i was running windows 10 preview with no issues that i remember a couple months ago so its possible hardware may have corroded or something between that time. I have read a couple sites explaining NVidia and Linux dont mix but theres always someone pointing out tons of people are happily running Linux and NVidia so im a bit determined to be one lol. I just restarted and it booted to the desktop. Im going to do some testing and see if its at all stable and report back what happens. I do suspect it is something to do with the display adapter though.

Ok that didn't take too long, I clicked on the search button on the launcher and it popped open then froze. This could be a memory issue I suppose, or a bios setting, do you know of any bios settings that could cause this? An incompatible "feature" or something?

Just restarted after the freeze, now I'm looking at at yellow and purple messed up triangle on the right hand side of the screen. Looks like one of those magic eye pictures haha. I'm going to go for clean install number 5 and not allow any updates and see what happens. What should I do assuming its going to do the same thing and mess up on me again?

Last edited by Siezed; 06-17-2016 at 10:47 AM.
 
Old 06-17-2016, 10:49 AM   #4
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Which exact Nvidia GeForce card/chipset is in your system?

Generally, the Nouveau driver should work most of the time to get any Nvidia card working. Ubuntu "should" include a binary driver for your card/chipset.

Try this:

1. Try to use a Live disk of any distribution. I actually recommend SalixOS Live Xfce for this since it loads the VESA driver or Modesetting by default. Useful for testing stuff.

2. Use the console and use "su" root to run lspci and look for VGA. It SHOULD say Nvidia and the card type. If it doesn't it might be a bad graphics card/chip. If it does and still errors it might be a bad driver, kernel, etc. Try Nouveau first, then the Nvidia driver.

3. Try another distribution. I'm no fan of Ubuntu as I've had some bad stability issues with them.

Try these and report back what you find.
 
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Old 06-17-2016, 11:02 AM   #5
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Hi.

/My first thought was try other distros but looking inside was well suggested. How much RAM?
There are other *buntus too...

Have fun!

Last edited by jamison20000e; 06-17-2016 at 11:08 AM. Reason: added RAM
 
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Old 06-17-2016, 11:11 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ReaperX7 View Post
Which exact Nvidia GeForce card/chipset is in your system?

Generally, the Nouveau driver should work most of the time to get any Nvidia card working. Ubuntu "should" include a binary driver for your card/chipset.

Try this:

1. Try to use a Live disk of any distribution. I actually recommend SalixOS Live Xfce for this since it loads the VESA driver or Modesetting by default. Useful for testing stuff.

2. Use the console and use "su" root to run lspci and look for VGA. It SHOULD say Nvidia and the card type. If it doesn't it might be a bad graphics card/chip. If it does and still errors it might be a bad driver, kernel, etc. Try Nouveau first, then the Nvidia driver.

3. Try another distribution. I'm no fan of Ubuntu as I've had some bad stability issues with them.

Try these and report back what you find.
Ok I'm downloading salixlive xfce right now, by live cd you just mean selecting "try Ubuntu" off the install cd right?
 
Old 06-17-2016, 11:15 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tnut View Post
......Be aware that Linux and NVidia are not in somes cases "not the bests friends".....
I've heard that and have seen the video of Mr. Torvalds expressing his opinion of Nvidia, but my experience has been just the opposite. The best thing I did, regarding Linux, was switching to Nvidia video cards after over 20 years of using ATi cards. The Nvidia proprietary drivers have been much better than the ATi drivers both in ease of installation and overall performance.
 
Old 06-17-2016, 11:30 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by jamison20000e View Post
Hi.

/My first thought was try other distros but looking inside was well suggested. How much RAM?
There are other *buntus too...

Have fun!
8gb of ocz ram, but this got me thinking to remove the extra ram and just use one stick, maybe I'll find a faulty one.
 
Old 06-17-2016, 11:55 AM   #9
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You should be able to do a check for bad RAM from GRUB though may need to enable it in /etc/default/grub then run:
Code:
update-grub

Last edited by jamison20000e; 06-17-2016 at 11:59 AM.
 
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Old 06-17-2016, 11:57 AM   #10
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Oh wait crossed threads, wrong one but a live OS will do...
 
Old 06-17-2016, 12:29 PM   #11
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Ok I took out all my memory and the first had one error within 5 mins of running memtest, second ran for 10 mins or so, enough that I think its not causing my problem, I created a brand new Ubuntu USB and tried booting from that, got the same type of garbled display and couldn't do anything, looking like messed up display driver. The other salix distro just finished downloading so I'm making a USB of that and going to try it.
 
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Old 06-17-2016, 12:43 PM   #12
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Alright salix seems to be working off the live cd, however internet video is extremely choppy, specifically cc.com. Is this just because I haven't actually installed the os yet? Also, how do I go about installing google chrome to salix?

Youtube is choppy too, and weird screen tearing kinda. Should I be trying to install a different driver or something?

Ok I'm trying to use the console to figure out my hardware, I type "Su" and it asks for password, but I don't have one for this salix os, is there a default password?

Last edited by Siezed; 06-17-2016 at 12:55 PM.
 
Old 06-17-2016, 01:33 PM   #13
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Quote:
I've heard that and have seen the video of Mr. Torvalds expressing his opinion of Nvidia, but my experience has been just the opposite. The best thing I did, regarding Linux, was switching to Nvidia video cards after over 20 years of using ATi cards. The Nvidia proprietary drivers have been much better than the ATi drivers both in ease of installation and overall performance.
I've had the same experience. Basically, open source ati/nvidia drivers are generally work, but are poor performance wise (however there are exceptions). Proprietary ATI drivers generally suck, though there are still some exceptions. Proprietary Nvidia drivers have generally seemed to me to be the best. I've actually never had problems with them. Though, as with everything, there are likely exceptions.

Edit: If you're running older hardware try Debian stable, it usually stays behind longer than Ubuntu. Just make sure you're using the proprietary nvidia driver.

Last edited by biosboy4; 06-17-2016 at 01:35 PM.
 
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Old 06-17-2016, 01:50 PM   #14
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I do recall using some proprietary Linux nvidia drivers back in the day, used their website. Nowadays you may just double click on it depending the extension*?


Edit\add: http://old.slax.org/forum.php?action...parentID=37987

Last edited by jamison20000e; 06-17-2016 at 01:52 PM.
 
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Old 06-17-2016, 04:09 PM   #15
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Its being reported as geforce 8200 in Ubuntu's software and updates, and I'm using Nouveaus display driver in Ubuntu right now. I just looked at my tigerdirect order and its in fact an evga nforce 730a with geforce 8200 integrated graphics. Its one of the motherboards with hybrid sli, which I remember reading somewhere also causes Linux problems. Right now I have to go to work but any more info on how to get a working os running on this system would be appreciated. All I really need is a computer that will play flash well. That's basically all I need it for, just watching videos online in my rc airplane build room as I don't have any cable into this room to watch TV

Oh also, in the Ubuntu software and updates, additional drivers tab, theres a piece of hardware labeled Unknown: Unknown, and two options, "do not use this device" and "using processor microcode firmware for AMD CPU's from AMD64-microcode (proprietary)" could this perhaps be related? Something in my motherboard that's not being recognized correctly?
 
  


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