I am thinking of upgrading my old ATI/AMD Radeon 4870 to nVidia (610 or 620, maybe 630). I am not playing games. I like Compiz effects though. I use ubuntu 12.10.

Anyway, I would like to ask how to do it properly. I think I have to remove proprietary drivers first (ATI Legacy 12.06), restart and install nVidia proprietary drivers, then.

This is what I did in order to install my ATI drivers:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:makson96/fglrx
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade
sudo apt-get install fglrx-legacy

PS: Any advice on a good but inexpensive nVidia card would be greatly appreciated, too.

PS2: Wiil I need to upgrade my xorg?


You can remove the ATI drivers first but it is not "required".

I would log out of X then

sudo apt-get remove fglrx-legacy
sudo mv /etc/Xorg/xorg.conf ~/ #adjust the path

Then reboot and install your new card.

When the system comes back up you should get a basic X session with limited 3D support. Install the nvidia drivers as usual.

If you don't remove the fglrx drivers, or dont move the xorg.conf file worse thing that can happen is that it tries to load the ATI drivers and it can't. X will fail to start and you can fix it from the console.


As you used the PPA to donwgrade the Xorg , you have to remove this PPA properly to upgrade the Xorg again.

So , remove properly the PPA with below commands

sudo apt-get install ppa-purge
sudo ppa-purge ppa:makson96/fglrx

Close you PC , replace the ATI card with Nvidia and Power On. Probably the nouveau driver will be enalbed by default (nouveau= the pre-installed module for Nvidia cards).

From then , you can install any additional (restricted) drivers of Nvidia you want.

  • 1
    good catch with the downgraded xorg. Not sure it's needed, but never hurts to be safe.
    – coteyr
    Dec 2 '12 at 18:03

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.