[CentOS] Switch to Nvidia from ATI

Bisbal, Prentice PBisbal at LexPharma.com
Thu Oct 19 19:23:26 UTC 2006

Jay Leafey <jay.leafey at mindless.com> wrote: BRUCE STANLEY wrote:
> I am having some issues (e.g. System lock ups) with my
> ATI 9250 Video card.
> I am thinging about replacing it with either a Nvidia
> FX5200, FX5500, or a FX5600 card.
> Is anyone using one of these cards on Centos 4.1 with
> the stock (XORG) nv driver?

I'm currently using an nVidia FX 5600 card on my workstation running CentOS 4.4.  I used the XORG nv driver for a while with good, 
stable results, but switched to the nVidia-provided driver for better 3D performance.  Gotta be able to play Quake 4, don't you know!

For anything that does not require 3D, tho, the nv driver seems to work just fine.


Hi Jay!

I am probably going to pick up a NVIDIA card this week end.
What is the best way to install the new card and XORG driver?
Using a command line utility (maybe at init 3 level?),

Should I:

      1). Put the new card in, boot up, and then try to install the XORG 
           driver for the NVIDIA.


      2). With the ATI card still in, change the driver to the NVIDIA one,
           shut down, and then reboot.

       3).  some other approach.

I have not tried changing drivers after Centos has already bee installed
on a system.  I not even sure what command line utility to use.
I use to know it for the XFREE86 drives (RHEL 3).



Do this:

1) Download the appropriate driver from nvidia's website at http://www.nvidia.com/object/unix.html. If you're running on x86 hardware, the filename for the latest version (as of today) will be NVIDIA-Linux-x86-1.0-8776-pkg1.run. Save it somewhere easy to find after a reboot, like in /root/

2) Change your default runlevel to runlevel 3 by editing /etc/inittab changing 




This will prevent errors as the system boots in runlevel 5 and tries to start X with the wrong drivers. 

3) Shutdown system and replace the old video card with the new nvidia one. 

4) Power up

5) Login in as root, cd to the directory where you saved NVIDIA-Linux-x86-1.0-8776-pkg1.run to and execute 
'sh NVIDIA-Linux-x86-1.0-8776-pkg1.run' 

6) Edit your /etc/X11/xorg.conf file:

Remove the line:

      Driver "nv"
  (or Driver "vesa")
  (or Driver "fbdev")

and replace it with the line:

    Driver "nvidia"

Remove the following lines:

    Load "dri"
    Load "GLCore"

In the "Module" section of the file, add the line (if it does not already

    Load "glx"

7) Start X from the command line to make sure it works, first as root, and then as a regular user. 

8) If that works, edit /etc/inittab and change your default runlevel back to runlevel 5

9) Do 'telinit 5' to switch to runlevel 5. 

10) Log in, run glx gears, and be amazed at your frame rates. Then start tuxracer (or doom, or unreal tournament) and be amazed at the performance improvement. 

If you have any problems, read the documentation installed in /usr/share/doc/NVIDIA_GLX-1.0. The documentation is extrmely well written and easy to follow. It has helped me fix any problem I've ever encountered with the drivers. 

Good luck, 



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