I've just upgraded to Maverick 10.10 beta and notice heavy performance penalty on my Nvidia GT240 card. Will it be fixed for release?

EDIT:For me, 260.19.12 fixes all bugs. Perfomance & stability now perfect!


For those that don't know the specifics, the driver version is the recently-released 256.53. This was released in a rush after the previous version turned out to be a huge performance slug in certain situations.

However, there are still lots and lots of people (myself included) having problems with 256.53. This may be related to the kernel (as everybody involved seems to be on 2.6.35) but either way, the fix has to come from Nvidia.

And even if they do managed to get a new version out before Maverick releases, it needs testing and pulling into Ubuntu. Do not trust to hope.

I personally suggest you report your issue, along with a bug log (read the stickies) on the nvidia linux forum. In my experience, you'll get a lot more feedback there than you will through the standard support mechanism.

  • Thanks for reply. I use exactly 256.53 driver. I have run GtkPerf and found slowest step here - text output (maybe cairo bug?) . All tests took 20 seconds, while in 10.04 it was < 3 seconds. Glxgears are slow too (2500 fps vs. 30000 in Lucid) . Now I use nouaveu driver (2D only, no compiz) and hope 3D will be fixed soon. I will check nvidia forum too.
    – Extender
    Sep 6 '10 at 13:49
  • I am having this same issue on 10.10 release and I even read around and got a 260+ beta driver. Still having the same issue very frustrating. I know there's nothing that canonical can do but I gotta go back to 10.04 until this is fixed. Everything from startup to shutdown is horribly slow.
    – ThePosey
    Oct 11 '10 at 3:09
  • Yes, 260.19.06 driver is not ideal too. But that bug (LCD text) was fixed.
    – Extender
    Oct 11 '10 at 8:10

If performance is really woeful and you can extract some specific test-cases which exhibit this terrible performance then it can be possible to fix or work-around the slowness.

For example, earlier in the cycle there was a huge performance regression in Cairo which resulted in gradient drawing becoming incredibly slow. That was discovered to be due to Cairo turning on support for server-side gradients, which the drivers didn't support properly. And so Cairo was patched to avoid the slowness.

In that case the problem was narrowed down by a small test-case: rendering a GTK progress bar, which had a gradient on it.

If you can come up with a small, simple test-case, there's hope - you can file a Launchpad bug. If not, head to the nVidia forums as others have suggested.


Proprietary drivers can only be improved or updated by the owner (Nvidia). Installing the nvidia driver will enable your 3D acceleration and allow Ubuntu to run Unity. To install the latest driver via terminal check this webpage out for an easy guide. Ubuntu Proprietary Drivers

  • Welcome to Ask Ubuntu! Thank you for your answer. I made a small edit to your answer, trying to clarify a little bit more what you were trying to say. Please, don't forget to try to answer also to newest questions. This will provide even more help to the community!
    – Avio
    Sep 28 '12 at 7:35

Most likely not.

It is the proprietary driver so there is not much Canonical or the community can do about it.

The only chance that it will be improved is if it is the kernel interface to the driver that is causing the performance penalty but I have no knowledge about that sort of thing.

Try going to NVIDIA support.

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