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My laptop is a Core 2 Duo Dell from 2008. I am trying to run some OpenGL programs. The program with following code doesn't work:

glutInitContextVersion(4, 0);

The code requires OpenGL version of 4.0. glxinfo suggests OpenGL version 2.1.

  • The details of my Intel graphics driver from System Settings are:

    enter image description here

I don't see anything useful in the additional drivers section, except one Broadcom driver already activated. From Ubuntu Software Centre, I tried searching some other drivers and found Nvidia '173' and 'current' drivers. But I am not sure, if I should install them. Will it break whatever OpenGL programs are running fine?

What should I do to upgrade my graphics driver, so that it starts supporting latest OpenGL version like 4.0 to 4.3?

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up vote 8 down vote accepted

OpenGL support is typically a hardware feature, and cannot just be upgraded by installing a new/different driver; the nvidia drivers you mention are for discrete Nvidia cards and will do nothing for your Intel graphics.

According to Intel's documentation, the 965GM chipset supports only up to OpenGL 1.5.

For OpenGL 4.0+ support, it appears you will need to upgrade to a new graphics card, which must be one of:

  • Intel HD 2500/4000 integrated graphics
  • AMD/ATI Radeon HD 5xxx/6xxx/7xxx
  • Nvidia GeForce 4xx/5xx/6xx

Note: this requires purchasing new hardware, probably a new laptop since you appear to be on one.

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Which one to choose among these 3? Is there any command to upgrade it? Thx. – iammilind Aug 15 '12 at 15:25
@iammilind unfortunately, upgrading hardware with a command doesn't work like that. You have to go out and buy the physical device and then upgrade it that way. – James Aug 15 '12 at 15:44
@jrg, got it. I thought it will be as easy as driver upgrade. – iammilind Aug 16 '12 at 1:45

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