I recently switched to Ubuntu 18.04, and had a lot of problems but managed to fix most. I am using a laptop with an i5-7200U and an NVidia GTX950M. I have installed the latest drivers, wine games work just fine.

The thing is: I don't know which graphic card is used in the system, whether it is the integrated one or the dedicated, and I have A LOT of screen tearing while moving things around while scrolling on the browser etc.

Is there a way to force enable vsync or fix the tearing otherwise?

EDIT: As requested by David, here is the result of the first command: https://paste.ubuntu.com/p/JXZXcBn56T/

And as for the log: https://paste.ubuntu.com/p/rtMyC88sRg/

  • Welcome to Ask Ubuntu! Could you please edit your question to include the output of lspci -nnk | awk -v n='[0300]' 'p&&/^\S/{p=0}!p{p=index($0,n)}p' and the content of /var/log/Xorg.0.log? Thanks. – David Foerster Sep 28 '18 at 12:51
  • Hello! Thanks for your response and for the welcome, but it seems I cannot add them as it greatly exceeds the body character limit. Is there any other way? – Eris Sep 28 '18 at 14:38
  • I have pasted them! – Eris Sep 28 '18 at 15:48
  • There's no Nvidia graphics adapter (enabled) in your system. Did you disable it in BIOS? – David Foerster Oct 1 '18 at 9:34

Nvidia suggests version 390 driver for your GPU. Install it by running-

sudo apt install nvidia-driver-390

Some additional tool like Nvidia X Server Settings will be automatically installed. This program will allow you to see what card is being used or to select the card you want to use.

For the workloads where you want to use Intel integrated graphics (which uses less power but poorer quality), this may solve the tearing-

Create an empty file anywhere using right-click menu. Name it 20-intel.conf Open it using any text editor (like Gedit, Mousepad etc.) and insert the following lines:-

Section "Device"

Identifier "Intel Graphics"
Driver "intel"
Option "AccelMethod" "sna"
Option "TearFree" "true"


Save the file. Open your file manager with root privilege (exp: sudo -i nautilus). Paste the file in /etc/X11/xorg.conf.d Create the requisite folders if they don’t exist. Restart the system after it’s done. If you experience issues like pixelated graphics, corrupt text, etc. after this, replace the word sna with uxa within the text.

  • So I did that and my laptop basically imploded. I was stuck in a loop at the login screen, booted from a live USB to delete the .conf. Then I logged in, it worked, but the Ethernet driver had been corrupted so I had to reinstall the driver for that. I don't understand what happened, but it did a lot of bad things. I did double check on the live boot, I created the xorg.conf.d and placed the 20-intel.conf there, and then this happened.. – Eris Sep 28 '18 at 15:00

Try the instructions here. The quick fix worked well. It was night and day. All I had to do was copy and paste a command into the terminal, but the permanent didn't work. I couldn't make a xorg.conf file.


If you are running Xrce, LXDE, MATE or other desktop environments that are not running a compositor such as Compton and you have a reasonably new NVIDIA card, you are likely pulling your hair out trying to get rid of the awful screen tearing you are experiencing. This screen tearing typically occurs when you are running a proprietary NVIDIA driver under Linux and have one of the aforementioned (or any non-composited) desktop environments. Fortunately for all of us there is a fix, and I'm going to walk you through how to make that nasty NVIDIA screen tearing go away.

I'm not going to get into the specifics as to why this happens because frankly, I have no idea and I'm more interested in how to make it go away.

For me, the tearing is very obvious when moving windows back and forth or scrolling in Firefox.. to the point that it drives me (and I'm sure you as well or you wouldn’t be here) absolutely nuts. So why suffer any longer? Let's get rid of it, shall we?

To test out and see if the fix works properly for you, open up a terminal and execute the following command (just copy it from here and paste it in):

nvidia-settings --assign CurrentMetaMode="nvidia-auto-select +0+0 { ForceCompositionPipeline = On }"

Your screen may flicker for a second and you should then see a drastic improvement. Test out Firefox and moving windows. Did the fix work for you? If so, we’ll need to make it permanent as this is just a temporary fix for now but don't worry, I’ll show you how. If it didn’t work for you, you can try changing the line slightly to this:

nvidia-settings --assign CurrentMetaMode="nvidia-auto-select +0+0 { ForceFullCompositionPipeline = On }"

Note that in the line above, we just changed the ForceCompositionPipeline to ForeFullCompositionPipeline.

Once you've determined that this does indeed fix your issue, we'll need to make sure it's permanent. If it didn't work or caused an issue, simply reboot and you'll be back to your normal desktop.

Now that we've determined that our fix works, to resolve screen tearing once and for all, it's time to make the changes stick. First we need to make sure you have an xorg.conf present in the /etc/X11 directory. To find out, type the following command into a terminal and press Enter:

ls /etc/X11

If you see an xorg.conf file listed like below, proceed.

$ ls /etc/X11  
app-defaults             xinit             Xreset      Xsession.d  
default-display-manager  xkb               Xreset.d    Xsession.options  
fonts                    xorg.conf         Xresources  xsm  
rgb.txt                  xorg.conf.backup  Xsession

If not, skip this next part but keep reading; I've got you covered further down under What to do if you can't find an /etc/X11/xorg.conf.

For those with an xorg.conf listed, in the same terminal window, make a backup of the file by typing the following command and pressing Enter:

cp /etc/X11/xorg.conf /etc/X11/xorg.conf.backup

Now open the file with your favorite text editor (I'm a fan of nano text editor myself) as root and enter the following command:

sudo nano /etc/X11/xorg.conf

This will open up your editor, you will then want to add a line below based on which one worked for you under the Screen Section, so it ends up looking similar to this:

Section "Screen"
    Identifier     "Screen1"
    Device         "Device1"
    Monitor        "Monitor1"
    DefaultDepth    24
    Option         "Stereo" "0"
    Option "metamodes" "nvidia-auto-select +0+0 { ForceFullCompositionPipeline = On }"
    SubSection     "Display"
        Depth       24

So, if of the two nvidia-settings lines above we tested, the one with ForceFullCompositionPipeline worked, use the example above, if ForceCompositionPipeline worked, simply use that instead in the example above.

Some of you may already have an Option "metamodes" in your /etc/X11/xorg.conf, like in the example below for dual monitor setup:

Option "metamodes" "VGA-0: 1152x864_60 +0+0, DVI-D-0: 1680x1050_60 +0+864"

If this is the case, simply change the line so that it look like this:

Option "metamodes" "VGA-0: 1152x864_60 +0+0, DVI-D-0: 1680x1050_60 +0+864 { ForceCompositionPipeline = On }"

Reboot and your tearing should be gone!

What do do if you can't find an /etc/X11/xorg.conf

Now, for those of you who, like me, did not have an /etc/X11/xorg.conf (most people running Ubuntu, for instance), you may be panicking thinking that you won't be able to apply this fix. Not to worry, I had the same issue, and I won't leave you hanging.

On my main machine, I’m running Linux Mint 18, but this should work with any distribution, I suspect. I did not have an xorg.conf, so what I did was launch the nvidia-settings tool and generated a new one by going to the X Server Display Configuration section and under file name enter /etc/X11/xorg.conf (uncheck merge with existing if it's checked as this is only useful in the instance of where you have one) and then click Save to X Configuration File.

enter image description here
Save to X Configuration File

This should generate one for you which you can then modify using the steps above.


For optimus nvidia you need to use prime sync. In a terminal create this file.

sudo nano /etc/modprobe.d/zz-nvidia-modeset.conf

Insert this

options nvidia_drm modeset=1

Then ctrl+o press enter key ctrl+x to save file and exit.

Then run this command

sudo update-initramfs -u


To check after reboot run this,

xrandr --verbose

Scroll up and look at the top result area, you should see

PRIME Synchronization: 1 supported: 0, 1

Example here

xrandr results


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