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I'm trying to get ubuntu 13.10 working on a desktop with a nvidia 7200gs. First i've tried to install the official drivers from the nvidia website, which didn't work - the installer aborted on creating the kernel modules.

Googling around i've found the x-edgers ppa to install the drivers from. According to the docs i've installed the matching drivers for my card:

sudo apt-get install nvidia-304 nvidia-304-settings

After rebooting the x server doesn't start, but there are no fatal error messages in the x log. Listing the loaded modules doesn't include any nvidia module. BUT: if i manually load nvidia-304 module instead of nvidia everything works fine - i can start lightdm and even login:

lsmod | grep nvidia
modprobe nvidia-304
lsmod | grep nvidia
nvidia   xxxxxxxxxx 0
service lightdm start

What to do here to have the appropriate module started on boot?

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What do you mean by "the installer aborted on creating the kernel modules" .. don't give up just yet. I know Nvidia drivers can drive you crazy but there is always one driver that will work for your video card. – Taz D. Feb 23 '14 at 6:29

The easiest way to solve your problem with nvidia-304 driver is to install all LXDE packages using Synaptic, and also to install LXDM, and choose lxdm as default display manager. It will completely change your desktop but at least it will work, and you'll also get the benefit of using fewer resources than before, as the boot-up process and the OS itself are faster and lighter in a lxde environment.

When I say install all LXDE packages, I mean you actually install all that is needed, don't just let Synaptic choose the dependencies for you, you go and install all related packages to LXDE including the actual LXDE package :) , or else it won't work. Installing LXDM (display manager for lxde) immediately after that is also essential to make it work, and don't forget to choose the LXDE session after first reboot.

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