How to install Nvidia drivers on Kubuntu 16.10

Install Nvidia drivers

Installing Nvidia drivers, like always, can be a little bit tricky. I installed the ones from the default repository, but they did not work and the system went into a blank screen.

1. Check and find out your graphics card model

The first thing to do is find out your gpu chipset, so that the correct driver can be selected. Run the lspci command as shown below and you would see some output.

lspci -vnn | grep VGA -A 12
01:00.0 VGA compatible controller [0300]: NVIDIA Corporation GT218 [GeForce 210] [10de:0a65] (rev a2) (prog-if 00 [VGA controller])
        Subsystem: ZOTAC International (MCO) Ltd. GT218 [GeForce 210] [19da:1160]
        Flags: bus master, fast devsel, latency 0, IRQ 29
        Memory at e2000000 (32-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=16M]
        Memory at d0000000 (64-bit, prefetchable) [size=256M]
        Memory at e0000000 (64-bit, prefetchable) [size=32M]
        I/O ports at 2000 [size=128]
        Expansion ROM at 000c0000 [disabled] [size=128K]
        Capabilities: <access denied>
        Kernel driver in use: nouveau
        Kernel modules: nvidiafb, nouveau

In the above output the gpu is GeForce 210. In the next step we use this information to find out the correct driver.

The kernel driver in use is nouveau, which is the open source driver for using nvidia cards.

2. Check the correct driver number first

Don't just install the nvidia-current package hastily. If your card is old, then the latest nvidia drivers will not work it and cause a black blank screen after boot.

First, find out the correct driver version for your card. Visit the following site and fill in the details of your graphics card and submit.

http://www.nvidia.com/Download/index.aspx

The site will tell you the current version of driver to use. In my case its version 340.102
So I shall be installing the package named "nvidia-340".

3. Setup the graphics-drivers ppa and install the drivers

First setup the graphics-drivers ppa. It has newer builds of the nvidia drivers.

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:graphics-drivers/ppa
sudo apt update

Now install the nvidia driver.

sudo apt-get install nvidia-340

It will automatically installed and setup everything. Once it has finished, restart your system.
You can also go to "System Settings > Hardware > Driver Manager" and install from there.

4. Check the installed drivers







After the system starts successfully, you can check the information about the nvidia drivers and the graphics card as well.

Run the previous lspci command again -

lspci -vnn | grep VGA -A 12
01:00.0 VGA compatible controller [0300]: NVIDIA Corporation GT218 [GeForce 210] [10de:0a65] (rev a2) (prog-if 00 [VGA controller])
        Subsystem: ZOTAC International (MCO) Ltd. GT218 [GeForce 210] [19da:1160]
        Flags: bus master, fast devsel, latency 0, IRQ 30
        Memory at e2000000 (32-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=16M]
        Memory at d0000000 (64-bit, prefetchable) [size=256M]
        Memory at e0000000 (64-bit, prefetchable) [size=32M]
        I/O ports at 2000 [size=128]
        [virtual] Expansion ROM at 000c0000 [disabled] [size=128K]
        Capabilities: <access denied>
        Kernel driver in use: nvidia
        Kernel modules: nvidiafb, nouveau, nvidia_340

Now the Kernel driver in use is nvidia. This shows that the nvidia drivers are being used for graphics display.

Check if chromium/chrome is using hardware acceleration

Open the following url and check the information -

chrome://gpu/

It would show detailed information about whether hardware acceleration or software rendering is being used in various places.

If it does not work

It might so happen that the driver did not work, and then you would get a blank black screen on booting the system. Then you have to remove the driver and get back to the previous driver.

Boot into the Ubuntu recovery console. Run the following command to make the root partition writable.

mount -o remount,rw /

Now remove the nvidia drivers with the following command

sudo apt-get remove --purge nvidia-*

Restart system, and the nouvea drivers should work again. Check the following link for more information -
http://askubuntu.com/questions/41681/blank-screen-after-installing-nvidia-restricted-driver

Last Updated On : 17th February 2017

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