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I recently acquired a new laptop featuring hybrid graphics, namely a Toshiba P50T-B. I installed Ubuntu and at first I had lots of troubles to set up the graphics. The screen was turning black right after Grub, which was fixed through adding the option nomodeset and by installing the intel drivers.

Now, the Intel GPU works just fine as an only graphics controller, but I cannot get the AMD Radeon R9 M265X to work. I tried installing the proprietary drivers fglrx which cause the system to boot in low graphics mode from which the farthest I have gone is to switch to console mode and uninstall/purge the AMD drivers.

The relevant part of the output of sudo lshw is

 *-pci
      description: Host bridge
      product: Xeon E3-1200 v3/4th Gen Core Processor DRAM Controller
      vendor: Intel Corporation
      physical id: 100
      bus info: pci@0000:00:00.0
      version: 06
      width: 32 bits
      clock: 33MHz
    *-pci:0
         description: PCI bridge
         product: Xeon E3-1200 v3/4th Gen Core Processor PCI Express x16 Controller
         vendor: Intel Corporation
         physical id: 1
         bus info: pci@0000:00:01.0
         version: 06
         width: 32 bits
         clock: 33MHz
         capabilities: pci pm msi pciexpress normal_decode bus_master cap_list
         configuration: driver=pcieport
         resources: irq:42 ioport:e000(size=4096) memory:f7b00000-f7bfffff ioport:e0000000(size=268435456)
       *-display UNCLAIMED
            description: Display controller
            product: Venus PRO [Radeon HD 8850M / R9 M265X]
            vendor: Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. [AMD/ATI]
            physical id: 0
            bus info: pci@0000:01:00.0
            version: 00
            width: 64 bits
            clock: 33MHz
            capabilities: pm pciexpress msi cap_list
            configuration: latency=0
            resources: memory:e0000000-efffffff memory:f7b00000-f7b3ffff ioport:e000(size=256) memory:f7b40000-f7b5ffff
    *-display
         description: VGA compatible controller
         product: 4th Gen Core Processor Integrated Graphics Controller
         vendor: Intel Corporation
         physical id: 2
         bus info: pci@0000:00:02.0
         version: 06
         width: 64 bits
         clock: 33MHz
         capabilities: msi pm vga_controller bus_master cap_list rom
         configuration: driver=i915 latency=0
         resources: irq:49 memory:f7400000-f77fffff memory:d0000000-dfffffff ioport:f000(size=64)

As you see, for some reason the Intel graphics is being detected as a VGA compatible controller whereas the AMD GPU is being listed as Display controller and, moreover, appears as UNCLAIMED, which seems to mean that the necessary module for it to work is not loaded.

As an additional info, the relevant part of the output of lspci is

00:02.0 VGA compatible controller: Intel Corporation 4th Gen Core Processor Integrated Graphics Controller (rev 06)
01:00.0 Display controller: Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. [AMD/ATI] Venus PRO [Radeon HD 8850M / R9 M265X]

Unfortunately, Toshiba's support is terrible as they do not support anything but MSW, so here I am stuck with a hybrid system which only works as a regular single-gpu laptop.

  • Hey @claud10, I am thinking of buying that very same laptop. But I am not sure how the graphics card will work... Do you have any overheating problems? Can you at least not use the graphics card? Also, you might consider using these drivers: support.amd.com/en-us/kb-articles/Pages/… . I am not sure if they are compatible with the M265x card (I have been googling it, but there is not almost any information out there regarding this graphics card and ubuntu). – jespestana Sep 10 '14 at 15:40
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    Hi @jespestana, indeed my first try was to install the newest catalyst beta drivers (14.6) for Linux. I have tried too many other things after that, all of them without much success. It seems to me that the proprietary drivers do not expect a hybrid system but rather a single-gpu setting. Well, this is only a guess based on my experience with this specific machine. Regarding the heat problems, I remember experiencing some before installing the intel graphic drivers. Now the machine boots normally (and the heat is just average) but does not offer me the option to use the radeon. – claud10 Sep 11 '14 at 16:12
  • Thanks for the information @cloud10. Two more questions: Can you use a second monitor with your current ubuntu installation (using the intel graphics)? Any advice on how to install ubuntu with dual boot, without formatting the windows OS? I will get my P50t-B laptop soon... I'll let you know if I manage to install the graphics card correctly. – jespestana Sep 14 '14 at 16:49
  • Hi @cloud10. Thanks a lot for the information that you provided in this post. I was able to install my intel graphics card, and to setup unity with good working conditions for the P50-B screen resolution. However, I could not install the Radeon graphics card. I will post what I did as an answer, but I know it is not a solution to your problem (and mine). – jespestana Sep 22 '14 at 7:01
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With the release of Ubuntu 14.10, some of the problems related to this incompatibility issue appear to be solved. I succeeded to make both graphic cards to work as follows:

1) Install Ubuntu 14.10. In my case, I first tried updating from 14.04 but I messed up with the installation. I ended up doing a clean install from an Ubuntu CD.

2) Install the fglrx driver from "Software & Updates" -> "Additional Drivers".

3) Reboot

4) Unfortunately, the AMD Catalyst Control Center behave weirdly. The first time I run it, it did run normally. I used it to switch the card. After a reboot, the AMD Catalyst Control Center did not run anymore. To switch between cards, please follow the step 5).

5) Check whether you are using the discrete card (radeon) or the integrated one (intel) by running the in a terminal:

amdconfig --pxl

If you are using the Intel card, you should see a message like:

PowerXpress: Integrated GPU is active (Power-Saving mode).

Otherwise you will see a similar message stating that the discrete card is currently in use. To switch from using the discrete card to the integrated one, run the following command:

amdconfig --px-igpu

For the other way around, run the following command:

amdconfig --px-dgpu

In both cases you will be prompted to restart the X server. You may log out and log in again for the changes to take effect.

  • This left me in low-graphics mode, which I could not get out of without switching back to integrated graphics. I'm using Ubuntu 14.10 – American Luke Feb 14 '15 at 1:15
  • I am running Ubuntu 15.04. This instructions work currently perfectly well on a Toshiba Satellite P50t-B. I have restarted several times and the AMD Catalyst Control Center is still working. Cheers! – jespestana Aug 11 '15 at 22:06
  • I just tried to install in my P50t-B Ubuntu 14.04.3, and the discrete graphics card is also working. I used the instructions given by claud10 to install it. I have restarted several times and the AMD Catalyst Control Center is still working. Cheers! – jespestana Aug 12 '15 at 7:33
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I am posting this for other people, who may want to install Ubuntu on their Toshiba Satellite P50-B laptops. Please notice, I could install the ATI Radeon Graphics card on Ubuntu (I think is just unconfigured); so I did not answer @cloud10 question.

Installation instructions for Toshiba Satellite P50T-B, Windows 8.1 + Ubuntu 14.04.1 LTS (Trusty Tahr):

  1. Resize your Windows partition in Windows using the (pre-installed) Disk Management tool. The recommended is to have: a Ubuntu system partition, a Linux swap partition, and a data partition.

  2. Create the Ubuntu liveUSB for Ubuntu 14.04.1, use either: 2.a http://www.ubuntu.com/download/desktop/create-a-usb-stick-on-ubuntu 2.b http://www.ubuntu.com/download/desktop/create-a-usb-stick-on-windows

  3. Shutdown windows making a Full Shutdown (no hybernation): http://www.howtogeek.com/129021/how-to-do-a-full-shutdown-in-windows-8-without-disabling-hybrid-boot/

  4. Read all this tutorials and try comply with the instructions they give on EFI installation as much as you can. From the steps I followed, I believe that you actually don't need to setup anything else. 4.a https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hOz66FC0pWU 4.b Installing Ubuntu Alongside a Pre-Installed Windows with UEFI 4.c http://www.rodsbooks.com/linux-uefi/

  5. Start Ubuntu using the LiveUSB "Try Ubuntu 14.04.1". To do this (1) select USB in the boot setup (2) once in the Grub menu press e on the "Try Ubuntu 14.04.1" and a "nomodeset" after splash: [...] quiet splash nomodeset -- [...] (3) Press F10 to start trying ubuntu.

  6. Click install Ubuntu, follow recommended instructions as shown in the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hOz66FC0pWU . As you do have an EFI partition, and as noted in "annotations" on the video: when you are setting up the partitions, besides selecting the swap partition and the system partition (marked with boot "/"), you have to select the EFI partition in the lower drop menu (in the video they insist on this, as well as on the other tutorials). In my computer the "efi" partition was /dev/sda2.

  7. When Ubuntu finish installing you should be able to boot both on Windows and on Ubuntu. Ubuntu will however boot with a black screen (same as if you tried to boot the liveUSB without the nomodeset setup).

  8. You need to configure your intel HD graphics card in order to have your screen work 100% correctly. To do so set nomodeset in the Grub boot menu, as you did before. Namely: (1) wait for the Grub menu (2) once in the Grub menu press e on the "Ubuntu" option and a "nomodeset" after splash: [...] quiet splash nomodeset [...] (3) Press F10 to start Ubuntu.

  9. In Ubuntu: You will notice again that the screen is not 100% correct, and that the graphics work slowly. Also if you go to System Settings > Details; in Graphics it will say something like "Gallium 0.4 on llvmpipe". This means that you are not using any graphics card (not even the Intel HD Graphics).

  10. In Ubuntu: To install the intel HD Graphics as of September 2014, follow the 64-bit install tutorial from this website: http://linuxg.net/how-to-install-the-intel-linux-graphics-installer-1-0-6-on-ubuntu-14-04-fedora-20-and-derivative-systems/

  11. After installing the Intel HD Graphics drivers you should be able to reboot in Ubuntu without the "nomodeset" option. In Ubuntu: System Settings > Details; you should see in Graphics "Intel(R) Haswell bridge". Also, you should be able to setup your display resolution to whatever value you prefer. I recommend checking on the intenet how to set menu bars size, large text by default, etc (so that you can work in Ubuntu at maximum resolution).

  12. I did not manage to install the Graphics card correctly in Ubuntu 14.04.1 LTS. Everything in my computer is according to what @cloud10 said in this question.

  13. Enjoy!

  • 1
    With the release of Ubuntu 14.10, some of the problems related to this incompatibility issue appear to be solved. I succeeded to make both graphic cards to work as follows: – claud10 Oct 28 '14 at 2:48

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