[Centos] nVIDIA on CentOS 3.3

Wed Sep 22 02:13:36 UTC 2004
Rick Graves <gravesricharde at yahoo.com>


I tried it.  The short answer is that nVIDIA cards are
OK for text, but may not work at all under X.  

I downloaded the 3.3 ISO's, and burned new CD's.  I
did an X desktop install on a test bench P3 600 MHz
system with a 4.3 gig drive.  I did the install with a
known-to-work Voodoo Banshee card to get the system
going.  I used a Mag DX1495 monitor, which I know does
not to work on Linux with nVIDIA cards (but which
works just fine running Windows with nVIDIA cards).  

Everything installed OK with only a minor glitch
toward the end (just when going into the reboot, after
setting up the monitor and display card, there were
some messages about cannot find some graphics files). 

After going into my regular user account and adjusting
some preferences, I shut the system down, replaced the
Voodoo Banshee card with an nVIDIA Riva TNT 2 card,
and restarted the computer.  During startup, kudzu
detected the hardware change, and configured the
machine for the new card following my confirmation. 
(Windows can do this automatically, why not Linux?)

Sure enough, when X tried to load, the screen went
blank.  Not only did the screen go blank for the X
console #7, but the screen was blank for the 6 other
consoles as well.  I knew this because I could change
to my favorite with F2, then Ctl-Alt-del to reboot. 
The screen stayed blank until the computer began the
new boot, when the screen came back.  

This was exactly the situation under CentOS 3.1.  

Moral of the nVIDIA story: if the monitor/display
card/motherboard combination works for you, great.  If
not, using a display card from a different
manufacturer may be the best solution.