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Which nvidia driver from additional drivers option should I choose?
Which Nvidia driver should I use

I recently installed Ubuntu 12.10. I have no idea about this operating system so i would like to ask you a question. I have nvidia card in my laptop and i wanted to ask if i should install any driver mentioned in the "additional drivers". I mentioned below all the options available in the "additional drivers" window and i do not know which option should i choose. Would you please let me know which option is the most suitable for me? By default option 3 is selected.

  1. Using NVIDIA binary Xorg driver, kernel module and VDPAU library from nvidia-current (propriatary, tested)

  2. Using Experimental NVIDIA binary Xorg driver, kernel module and VDPAU library from nvidia-experimental-310 (proprietary)

  3. Using X.org X server - Nouveau display driver from xserver-xorg-video-nouveau (open source)

  4. Using NVIDIA binary Xorg driver, kernel module and VDPAU library from nvidia-current-updates (proprietary)

  5. Using Experimental NVIDIA binary Xorg driver, kernel module and VDPAU library from nvidia-experimental-304 (proprietary)

Thanks a lot in advance. Bye


If you don't plan on using any 3D applications at the moment, then I would stick with the Open-Source video drivers. I don't have nVidia graphics, but I do have AMD's Radeon HD 4200. In my experience, I have found that certain programs on Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin run better on my Toshiba Satellite L505D laptop when I use my Open-Source video drivers (packages look like "xorg-xserver-video-(radeon or ati)" and I will give you a few examples.

I found Google Chrome wouldn't work & display pages correctly and would crash when I used AMD's FGRLX proprietary video driver. I think Compiz was affected by the FGLRX driver too. I couldn't even change the brightness of my laptop's screen. But after I correctly and safely uninstalled the proprietary FGLRX video driver and switch back to X.Org's open drivers, I noticed the above programs worked much better/correctly again. Google Chrome started up and loaded web pages much faster going at light speed! I could've sworn Chrome worked faster on Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin than on my Windows 7 partition....

The downside was that my 3D gaming suffered, and I couldn't play Team Fortress 2 through WINE. You could start the program, but you just couldn't play it. Lol.

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  • The quality of Nvidia and AMD drivers are different.I agree with the poster, unless something is not working, stick to the default driver – user68186 Dec 9 '12 at 19:09

I use and recommend #4

sudo apt-get install nvidia-current-updates

Or use the gui

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  • If i understood right then first i chose the option number 4 and then run the above mentioned sudo command? – user113321 Dec 7 '12 at 22:18
  • Hello, would you care to explain why you recommend #4? I personally am experiencing lagginess around the Unity interface, and was wondering if a different driver would solve the issue - however, using 1 or 2 seems to break my entire GUI (can't see anything) and i am forced to reboot and fix the driver – im so confused Dec 7 '12 at 22:19
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    @user113321 i think he means if you are already in the GUI (where you can select the individual ones), just select and apply. If you are not in the settings window, then go to a terminal and type the above command – im so confused Dec 7 '12 at 22:20
  • You can either choose that option from the gui or run the command above. Ubuntu does tests with various Nvidia drivers. The reason some drivers are labelled experimental are usually because they haven't been tested while updated means it will grab the nvidia-current drivers when the testing was done and nvidia current updates is the updates that have come out since the release of that ubuntu version. – Goddard Dec 7 '12 at 22:34

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