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I have not seen a complete guide for correctly installing the GeForce drivers for the new Maxwell based cards and I have struggled getting my Maxwell card to work properly, so I have written a short complete guide that hopefully will help anyone in a similar situation.

What is the problem?

A couple months ago I bought a GeForce GTX 750 TI and it worked perfectly when running Windows 8.1. When running Ubuntu, it had constant problems and when it was working, there were a ton of video glitches. I was excited when I heard that the Linux kernel v3.15 was getting basic Maxwell support. Unfortunately, there isn't enough support there to get a Maxwell card running smoothly. I found out that a lot of people are having this issue, not only with the GTX 750+ Maxwell series but with Maxwell based cards in general.

I have spent hours looking through AskUbuntu posts and none of them have made my card run like it runs on Windows. It wasn't until I saw this review of the new GTX 980 that I had an idea that might fix my problem.

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Which cards will this work for?

I have not tested this on any graphics card except for the GTX 750 TI, but it should work for any NVidia card that is based on the Maxwell architecture. I recommend starting this tutorial with the GPU not installed.

Which kernel versions will this work for?

I had installed the newest Linux kernel at the time (v3.17) and it did not work with this installation. I would strongly recommend using the generic Linux image provided by Canonical. Newer kernel versions might yet be supported by DKMS and will cause a crash during the driver installation phase. I have tested this with 3.13.0-39-generic in Ubuntu 14.04 Trusty Tahr and it worked great. Use newer kernel versions at your own risk.

If you are running Ubuntu 14.04 with the default kernel, you shouldn't have any problems.

Step 1: Download the GeForce 343.22 driver

You can find it here. You MUST install this version of the driver or a newer one if available even if it is not technically supported for your card.

Any driver from the GTX 700 Series might work, but your card will not run smoothly. I tried using the GeForce 700 Series 340.58 driver and it worked for my card, but it was not perfect.

Step 2: Graphical part of the install

This part of the install can be done in Unity without any problems. Before you start this, make sure the driver has finished downloading, just in case. Just a warning, if you restart your computer during this part of the tutorial, you might mess up your graphics environment and you will have to start in safe-graphics mode to fix it. I have based this part of the tutorial on this answer to a similar question.

Remove any NVidia drivers that might have been installed with apt-get

sudo apt-get remove nvidia* && sudo apt-get autoremove

Prevent nouveau from starting at boot

sudo gedit /etc/modprobe.d/blacklist-nouveau.conf

Append these lines to the end:

blacklist nouveau
blacklist lbm-nouveau
options nouveau modeset=0
alias nouveau off
alias lbm-nouveau off

Disable kernel support for nouveau

echo options nouveau modeset=0 | sudo tee -a /etc/modprobe.d/nouveau-kms.conf
update-initramfs -u

Step 3: Non-graphical part of the install

You may want to print out this part of the tutorial or open it on a separate computer, because you will not be able to view this webpage once you enter TTY mode.

At this point, you must enter TTY mode. You can do this by pressing Ctrl+Alt+F1. You can also get to other terminals by using the F2-F6 keys. Press Ctrl+Alt+F7 if you need to get back into graphics mode.

Stop the lightdm service

sudo lightdm stop

or

sudo service lightdm stop

Install for the GeForce driver

sudo bash ./NVIDIA-Linux-x86_64-343.22.run

This will probably tell you that a supported graphics card is not installed. We don't care, install anyways.

Make sure to answer yes to all prompts, even when it asks you if you want to enable 32-bit compatibility.

If the driver install has successfully completed, it is safe shutdown your computer.

sudo shutdown -h now

Make sure that the graphics card is properly seated in the motherboard, and turn your computer back on. Everything should now be working properly. Please comment if you run into problems with this.

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    I'm up-voting this answer as it looks (formally) good to me. Instead of printing I'd suggest opening this page on another capable device like a smartphone or tablet. Alternatively, since the formatting here is in markdown it should be easy to read in editors like nano (click edit on the bottom of the answer and copy the text to a .txt document, then cancel the edit). As this should be a temporary workaround there should be (a link) to instructions on how to reinstall the drivers from the Ubuntu repositories. – LiveWireBT Nov 8 '14 at 10:54

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