Hi I just recently installed Ubuntu onto my laptop (Dell Inspiron 15r 5520 64-bit) alongside Windows 8. While Ubuntu 12.04.2 LTS seems to be working fine otherwise, in System Settings it is unable to detect my graphics card and shows as "unknown".

I tried the following commands and this is what i get:

$ lspci -v | grep -i vga
00:02.0 VGA compatible controller: Intel Corporation 3rd Gen Core processor Graphics Controller (rev 09) (prog-if 00 [VGA controller])
01:00.0 VGA compatible controller: Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. [AMD/ATI] Thames [Radeon HD 7500M/7600M Series] (prog-if 00 [VGA controller])

I have the ATI one as far as I know, so what's with the Intel VGA being displayed??

Secondly, in System Settings > Additional Hardware I activated the ATI/AMD proprietary FGLRX graphics driver (post-release updates). The thing downloaded and installed itself and but it shows as "The Driver is activated but not currently in use". I don't really know what that means.

After some digging around, I tried the following commands as well but to no avail:

sudo apt-get purge fglrx*
sudo apt-get install fglrx
sudo aticonfig --initial

Next I went to the AMD site and downloaded the requisite driver from here I followed the steps in their instruction manual, used the following command again:

sudo apt-get remove --purge fglrx fglrx_* fglrx-amdcccle* fglrx-dev*

and then went to the folder where I had download the driver and ran the installation file. I went through the setup process, did:


and rebooted my laptop. Still I am stuck at square one, however, my Hardware info now shows the ATI VGA driver in addition to an Intel one. Here are the names:

-PCI Devices-

VGA compatible controller : Intel Corporation 3rd Gen Core processor Graphics Controller (rev 09) (prog-if 00 [VGA controller])

VGA compatible controller : Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. [AMD/ATI] Thames [Radeon HD 7500M/7600M Series] (prog-if 00 [VGA controller])

Snapshot of PCI Devices

After I installed the downloaded ATI driver and checked System Settings > Additional Drivers, I see that the Raedon VGAs have been deactivated again, as shown: enter image description here

Here is a link to the /var/log/Xorg.0.log. Hope all this info helps.

Please help me detect my graphics card, I need it for dozens of applications specially Compiz effects, games etc. I am a novice so kindly explain your answers as far as possible so that I can make the best of of them. Thanks in advance :)

  • Hey Thanks. But I have already mentioned the commands I used and their results (as also shown in the example link you posted). To improve my answer I have now added a couple of snapshots that show the current state of my system hardware and VGA controllers. Hope this edit makes things clearer. :) – Darth Coder Jul 26 '13 at 8:45
  • try sudo apt-get install mesa-utils. Also see - askubuntu.com/questions/205112/… – Web-E Jul 26 '13 at 9:30

The display of the graphics card name in System Settings often does not work (just search askubuntu, there are dozens of questions about it and the answer is always the same...). I wouldn't worry about it and only trust other tools to find out which graphics driver is in use.

Your laptop obviously has a recent Intel CPU, which includes a graphics unit. This is the reason, an Intel graphics card is shown in lspci.

Your xorg.conf hints that atm you are using fglrx, and it seems to be working. To see, if the driver is really active, simply try to run fglrxinfo. Another tool that you might take a look at is amdcccle, the catalyst control center. It will give you a lot of details (if fglrx is installed).

Since you installed the driver from the AMD website, "additional drivers" will not show any driver in its list as active (since you didn't use official driver packages for Ubuntu, but the download from the AMD website).

I don't know about your laptop specifically, but you might find this guide useful: Installing Catalyst with Intel/AMD hybrid graphics

Oh, and btw, the preferred way to install the driver downloaded from the AMD website would be to make distribution specific packages and then to install those. By this, you can ensure that it stays working when you get Kernel updates. If you simply install it, it might be, that you have to reinstall it every time, a Kernel update is installed.

  • Well I don't know how this happened but after a few reboots my System settings is able to detect my AMD Raedon graphics card :D Guess the driver setup worked after all..!! – Darth Coder Jul 26 '13 at 14:19

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