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Wimukthi
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 17, 2015 8:11 am    Post subject: Changing Graphics Card Reply with quote

I dont know whether this is the correct place to ask this question but since its hardware based i will post it here,

I have gentoo running KDE4, the entire installation and kde install was done with onboard graphics. I have a VGA lying around but when i plug it in KDE doesnt load up obviously and the resolution is all wrong in the command line. Do i need to do a fresh install?


Last edited by Wimukthi on Sun Oct 18, 2015 2:14 am; edited 1 time in total
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NeddySeagoon
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 17, 2015 9:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wimukthi,

Its very hard to break Gentoo so badly you need to reinstall.
Changing hardware is not one of these cases.

You need to build the driver for your VGA card and possibly add some options to the kernel command line to get a console resolution you like.
It all depends what you are moving from and to.

Post the output of lspci so we can see both video cards and tell us which is which.
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Wimukthi
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 17, 2015 12:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's no problem at all. I'm running a onboard radeon xpress 200/1100. I want to plug in a nvidia geforce 9300gs
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 17, 2015 12:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I believe Gentoo Wiki covers it pretty well.
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Wimukthi
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 17, 2015 1:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It does? I googled "gentoo changing hardware" and got nothing
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 17, 2015 1:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wimukthi,

Choices ...

Are you using the radeon driver or the ati binary blob?
Do you want to use nouveau or the nvidia binary blob?
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Wimukthi
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 17, 2015 1:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I currently have the radeon one. That's what I put in make.conf when installing xorg and KDE. I want performance so if the nvidia binary is better at performance then I would go for that
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 17, 2015 1:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Linky. You need driver version 340.xx I think.
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Wimukthi
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 17, 2015 1:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah that should do. So I get that and change the use flag in make.conf video cards to "nvidia" and update xorg. Then I install the driver? Also is the nouveau driver more stable and easy to install? To get the radeon one all I had to do was set "radeon" as the video card and emerge xorg. So the nouveau would be slightly less hassle than nvidia right?
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 17, 2015 4:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wimukthi,

Neither are quite that simple.

To get the radeon driver, you had to choose the correct kernel options, as its in two pieces.
To get the nouveau, you need to disable radeon in the kernel and enable nouveau.

Both of these drivers give you a free framebuffer console.

To switch to the nvidia binary blob, you need to disable both radeon and nouveau in the kernel.
nvidia claim that they don't support any framebuffer console if you use their binary blob.
However, the simple frambuffers seem to work. That includes vesafb.
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Wimukthi
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 18, 2015 2:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for explaining,

Nvidia can keep their drivers. I think I will go with nouveau. I'm new to gentoo but use Ubuntu a lot and getting nvidia working was a pain. If you wouldn't terribly mind could you tell me how to get nouveau running? My KDE doesn't work either because I suppose xorg was configured with the "radeon" flag. Like I said I'm new to gentoo so you might have to dumb it down for me.

Also about the kernel. I actually used genkernel and didn't change anything when installing xorg. I just added "radeon" to the VIDEO_CARDS in make.conf. If I need to disable it or something could you also add that to your instructions?


Thanks again.
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 18, 2015 8:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wimukthi,

This wiki page explains what you need to do to use nouveau as you install for the first time.
To add to that, you need to turn off the radeon option in the kernel, since you can't normally have both.

Before you start, run
Code:
uname -a
and make a note of the date/time it shows.
After you have fixed your kernel, and rebooted into it, run uname -a again.

Make sure the date/time have changed. This is the build time of the running kernel.
Its very easy to skip a step in the kernel update process and still use the old kernel.

Using the binary blob is not much different. You do need to chose the right version if you have older hardware and nVidia tend to lag behind kernel update too.

Switching from radeon to nouveau will not require any xorg.conf changes, indeed, both work with no xorg.conf.

genkernel needs some help to configure video options since many are mutually exclusive.
It leaves radeon and nouveau both off if you leave it to its own devices. you must have passed it an option -menuconfig? perhaps.
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Wimukthi
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 19, 2015 3:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Actually I just did the genkernal all command. I think I will go for a complete reinstall. I can't understand any of what you said :D
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 19, 2015 4:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

How could a reinstall solve your problem? Anything you do in Gentoo can be undone, well, almost anything, rm -rf / will warrant reinstall ...
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Wimukthi
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 19, 2015 5:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well I think the question I asker isn't clear...

I installed gentoo and KDE while using an onboard VGA. Now I want to plug in a dedicated VGA. When I plug it in KDE doesn't start. Also the resolution of the command line is wrong. What I want to know is how to change the settings or what not to get it back to normal
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 19, 2015 5:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Set VIDEO_CARDS variable to your liking. Run emerge --ask --depclean to clean out old drivers. Follow Gentoo wiki about installing new drivers as you would do if you were installing Gentoo. You will need to re-configure your kernel and if you chose nVidia proprietary driver then you need a four-liner xorg.conf.

See, it is simple.
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Wimukthi
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 19, 2015 8:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Um... I don't know why it worked or how... But I followed the instructions on the wiki and installed the nvidia binary. At boot the console does put up some red stars about module not loading but it works. I don't understand about the module though, I did the modprobe thing. But since it seems to be working.....

Thanks to both of you. I must have got something out of your advice since it works. Sorry about being a complete idiot
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