I recently upgraded from Ubuntu 14.04 to 16.04. 14.04 was rock stable for more than a year that I used it. This should rule out most hardware issues. The only difference is that in 16.04 I'm using Nouveau drivers for the Intel HD Graphics that came with i7-6700 CPU. The computer randomly freezes and the only way to recover is to reboot. I have looked at syslog and kern.log but nothing obvious there. How do I troubleshoot this?

Going back to Nvidia GTX 970M is difficult as there are other issues there.

  • 3
    Using the Nouveau driver for Intel HD Graphics is a major problem in itself. Nouveau is for Nvidia graphics only, so in a way, you are lucky to get it work somehow. – mikewhatever May 13 '16 at 17:45
  • @mikewhatever you are right. I thought I was using the Nouveau driver but thats not true. It is selected as a third party driver because ubuntu detects the presence of a nvidia gtx 970m card. But the card is not connected to the monitor and is not being used. The machine is still crashing. – Prashant Saraswat May 13 '16 at 21:17
  • How much swap memory do you have ? freezes sometimes relate to system running out memory – Sergiy Kolodyazhnyy May 15 '16 at 0:29
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    CLOSE VOTERS The question is about supported release, with clear request of assisting in troubleshooting a specific issue. This is not off topic or too broad – Sergiy Kolodyazhnyy May 15 '16 at 0:33
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    @Serg. I have 32GB of memory with plenty of swap space. – Prashant Saraswat May 15 '16 at 2:49

I tried disabling hardware acceleration in Google Chrome but that didn't help. And the system was freezing every few minutes/hours. So I went back to using Nvidia proprietary driver ( nvidia-364..which is the latest as of today). The computer no longer freezes. So I'm guessing either the Intel HD Graphics hardware is bad on my motherboard or there is a bug in Ubuntu support for Intel HD graphics.

These are the reasons I tried to move to Intel HD Graphics:

  1. My second UHD monitor was not being detected after login. In nvidia settings it showed up as disabled. Enabling the monitor in nvidia-settings-manager would not persist after a reboot. I deleted my ~/.config/monitors.xml file and also used the Ubuntu Displays utility to switch the monitor on. The displays utility asked me if I wanted to keep this configuration and I said Yes. This seems to have fixed the problem.

  2. The other problem was that monitors were not waking up from sleep. I had to reboot the system everytime monitors went to sleep or remember to manually switch off the monitors everytime I stepped away. This is not a problem with the Intel HD Graphics so I'm guessing there is a bug in the Nvidia Proprietary drivers. For now I have disabled sleep on the monitors and hopefully will remember to switch them off manually whenever I need to.

Hope all this helps someone.


I had the same problem following a long and fond relationship with Ubuntu 14.04.

I'm using Nvidia 650 hardware and 16.04 has not frozen again since I installed the Nvidia-367 drivers and rebooted:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:graphics-drivers/ppa
sudo apt update
sudo apt-get nvidia-367

protected by Community Nov 5 '16 at 14:33

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