Problem: Normal users aren't using the best graphics driver. I first noticed this playing Osmos from the HumbleBundle2, but I can observe it while running glxgears too. Maximised on a 1280x1024, glxgears averages a choppy 60 frames in 5 seconds, vs a smooth 300 frames every 5 seconds for root.

Here's some glxinfo:

jake@daedalus:~$ glxinfo | grep "renderer string"
OpenGL renderer string: Software Rasterizer
jake@daedalus:~$ sudo glxinfo | grep "renderer string"
[sudo] password for jake: 
OpenGL renderer string: Mesa DRI R300 (RV380 5B60) 20090101 x86/MMX+/3DNow!+/SSE2 TCL DRI2

I have the same problem even after rebooting (powering down, cycling surge protector). I followed the directions at the Ubuntu wiki for getting rid of fglrx, but no dice. What else can I do?

Hardware: Radeon x300 AMD Athlon 1.8 GHz 1.5 GB ram

1 Answer 1


I wonder if adding yourself to the 'video' group (I think) would help?

sudo adduser $USERNAME video

Can someone confirm the group name? Thx

  • Yes, the group is video. Adding myself to the group boosts my regular user's glxgears frame rate 500%. Thanks!
    – djeikyb
    Jan 24, 2011 at 23:21
  • @djeikyb, shouldn't this be a bug? Did you try and report it at Launchpad? Why are normal users restricted from taking advantage of the hardware capabilty?
    – Oxwivi
    Feb 23, 2011 at 12:37
  • It may be self-inflicted. I would have to test on a clean install on a real machine, not a vm. But yes, could be a bug.
    – djeikyb
    Feb 23, 2011 at 12:44
  • @djeikyb, I don't think it's self-inflicted since there's this video group to remove all restrictions. And if you reply, please add @Oxwivi - I hate to miss out on replies because I wasn't notified.
    – Oxwivi
    Mar 1, 2011 at 14:59
  • @Oxwivi Oh! Will do, didn't realise that's how comments work. Cool.
    – djeikyb
    Mar 2, 2011 at 3:59

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