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I am new to Linux, and don't have much knowledge on the OS and its technical terms. I brought a new ATI/AMD Radeon video card, and installed on the new Ubuntu 11.10 amd64 system (this is my first Linux-based OS). The PC boot up with blank screen, not completely blank, I can see a tiny small portion of the Ubuntu at the upper edge of monitor screen. Ubuntu appears is working fine at the background, I just can't see it with the nearly blank screen. I removed the new video card and connected the monitor cable to the on-board video output, and Ubuntu boot-up fine with normal appearance.

I would like to get some step-by-step suggestions to fix this video card issue.


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Does the screen show you enough to enable you to install the drivers like in this question?… – Jorge Castro Jan 1 '12 at 17:48

There could be 2 reasons that you have a blank screen that I can think of. (1) Because your system has not recognised your new ATI card during boot. Somewhere in your BIOS (you go to Setup during boot) there is a setting which helps you decide which card to use. However if you find that you get a boot up screen with your new card, then the problem is with the installation of the ATI driver.

Here's what you could do. First of all you need to find out what the ip address is of the system you installed Ubuntu on. Then download putty to your windows system and log into the ip address of the system with the userid and password you established during the installation. At that point you can start installing the appropriate drivers etc. This is because putty is an implementation of a secure shell remotely - essentially you are connected into your system in command line mode. If you don't know what the ip address is of your system find a piece of software called lookatlan and download it to your windows system. When you run it - it will show you all of the devices connected to your network in your home. Alternatively you could try using the Ctrl-Alt-F1 keys on your Ubuntu system which might open a terminal session. If that's the case then you don't have to go and ssh (which is what putty does) into the system.

The next problem is finding out which drivers you need. This should help you find them

This link provides a lot of useful instructions

Let us know how you get along Jurij

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Jurij/Jorge, thanks for the info. I finally manage to get the driver installed on the Ubuntu 11.10 amd64 OS. My struggle was the lack of Linux experience in command line interface. Simple task such as copying file or executing a file is not easy for me. Since I got blank screen up on booting up, no GUI. that was no easy way to quickly try the solution on the web.

Here is what I did for installing the ATI/AMD driver for the Ubuntu 11.10 (Natty release). Hope this would help others experiencing similar issue. - Hold the power switch until PC reboot. - Hold down to "SHIFT" key when when PC is rebooting, this will bring up a Window-liked safe mode screen options.
- Choose the "Recovery mode", this will bring you to another screen. - Select the boot prompt option to get a terminal - Once in the terminal, follow the Ubuntu Natty Installation Guide for ATI driver

I did not provide the commands here, because I did not know enough, but those commands can be found in the link provided above. Here I just outlined the steps involved.

  1. Install the prerequisite packages
  2. If you are using 64bit OS, you need to install another package
  3. Download the latest Catalyst package (the latest AMD/ATI driver from AMD)
  4. Create .deb packages. (build the video card driver for Ubuntu OS from the downloaded AMD driver)
  5. Install .debs. (install the driver) 6.Generate a new /etc/X11/xorg.conf file (I used the Generic Config, and it works for me) 7.Force use of the new xorg.conf (not sure if this is needed, but I did it anyway) 8.Reboot your system (use the command reboot)
  6. Test/verify the installation
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Which driver did you installed?? If you have installed a proprietary driver, then you might want to remove it from recovery console (option is on the boot screen) and install the open source graphics driver. To remove the driver you have to

sudo apt-get purge fglrx*

and you can google to find out how to install.

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muctadir, I did not install any driver. I have a clean installed Ubuntu 11.10 amd64 running fine with the on-board video output. I plugged the new ATI/AMD video card into the PCIe slot, and Ubuntu boot up in blank screen. Since I have blank screen, how to I get to console? what commands or key I have to use? Is there a way to boot Ubuntu in window-like "safe mode" I am new to Ubuntu and Linux-based OS, please provide step by step suggestion. Thx – meng Dec 29 '11 at 21:59

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