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As almost everyone here, I guess, in these days I downloaded Quantal Quetzal to give it a try. However I noticed that my laptop runs fairly hot with cooling fans almost always on, even sitting in the desktop doing nothing.

I downloaded XSensor to read temperature sensors, and I saw that while CPU stays on about 65°C, so quiet normal I guess, the GPU sits at 75°C. In comparison my actual Windows 7 installation, which dual boots witb Quantal, stays at 59°C CPU and 65°C. So I went reading and learned that AMD dropped support for my video card from fglrx package, and that fglrx-legacy won't support 1.13 Xorg, so I'm basically stuck with OSS drivers.

So I was guessing if there's anything I can try, and if it's possible that the OSS drivers could be the cause of the high temperature?

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Post more details, what graphics card you are using, and hardware in general. The link that says your graphics card is no longer supported. If your computer runs Win7, then it mustn’t be an old laptop. So I highly doubt your graphics card is no longer supported. My desktop uses an ancient AMD graphics card, still supported. – Dominic Jordan Hasford Oct 21 '12 at 7:35
As said, the card is a Radeon Mobility HD4670, and all the cards from the HD2000, HD3000 and HD4000 series are not supported in Catalysts 12.7 and newer. They need a legacy driver which is not compatible with Quantal's Xorg version. In Windows they're still supported. – Claudio Mezzasalma Oct 21 '12 at 7:43
Sorry I misread your post. I'll do some research and come back if I find anything. – Dominic Jordan Hasford Oct 21 '12 at 17:46
up vote 5 down vote accepted

The high temperature is caused by the poor power management of the open source drivers. Installing the latest proprietary drivers would help, if official support for the HD4xxx series hadn't been dropped with Quantal. So you're left with two options:

1.) Install the legacy FGLRX drivers through a custom PPA that ships with an older version of X.ORG.

Advantages: unsurpassed power management, better performance both in 3D and 2D apps ;

Disadvantages: packages provided by user, no guarantee that installation will work, might even break your system


2.) Adjust the power management of the open source drivers.

Advantages: safer option

Disadvantages: neither power management nor performance will be close to the proprietary drivers; this might change in the future, mind you

Tutorial , Making the changes persistent

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We seemed to have stumbled upon the same article :) – Dominic Jordan Hasford Oct 22 '12 at 5:28
I guess that this is the more complete scenarios covering we have. Thanks. – Claudio Mezzasalma Oct 24 '12 at 12:26

Latest proprietary AMD Catalyst driver version 12.9 cannot be used with Ubuntu 12.10 If you have an AMD Radeon HD 2xxx-4xxx series card.

Drivers for these cards are now available in a separate branch called legacy series. Unfortunately these legacy drivers (version 12.6) have not been updated to work with Ubuntu 12.10. Ubuntu 12.10 comes with xorg 1.13 while these drivers have support for older xorg 1.12.

So if you want to install these drivers in Ubuntu 12.10, you have to downgrade to xorg 1.12. A PPA has been provided by Tomasz Makarewicz that includes all the required packages you need to downgrade plus a fglrx-legacy package.

To install these packages, run the following commands:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:makson96/fglrx 

sudo apt-get update 

sudo apt-get upgrade 

sudo apt-get install fglrx-legacy

Do note that these packages are not officially supported by Ubuntu, so use them at your own risk. If something goes wrong, you can purge the packages by running following commands:

sudo apt-get install ppa-purge

sudo ppa-purge ppa:makson96/fglrx


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This should be the answer. Only way is to downgrade and losing official support. There are no options, really. Even using VMWare and a guest will give you a better performance (you have to have a good CPU that supports all the VM features). – Shiki Feb 1 '13 at 21:31

Unfortunately, yes.

If you can't install the proprietary drivers (that anyway doesn't work on quantal!) I see no solution.

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Not quite. There may be a (very difficult) way around it. – hexafraction Oct 22 '12 at 23:08

First, run the Additional Drivers program. Open Software Sources, it's the last tab. 12.04 default AMD were unusable on my laptop, thus I was forced to use proprietary drivers. Now in 12.10, the default drivers run beautifully out of the box.

enter image description here

If not, install Catalyst 12.8, it is updated AMD driver release in August, so fairly new and up to date. Instructions here: What is the correct way to install ATI Catalyst Video Drivers?

Power management could be your next option to look into. My favourite tool, which is easy and powerful, is Jupiter Applet. Having better power management can greatly reduce the heat of your computer, and in turn the fan rotations.

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It seems you have a Mobility Radeon HD7520G, which is supported by Additional Drivers. Since my HD4670 is not supported by the fglrx driver, I don't even have that choice. – Claudio Mezzasalma Oct 21 '12 at 7:44

What fixed the heat issue for me with the open-source driver, was changing the following line from '/etc/default/grub' to (following the section on Power Management on


You would be able to have quiet and splash in this line at the same time seperated from each other by spaces.

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