How do I kill X Server on Mint 14 to install Nvidia drivers?

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How do I kill X Server on Mint 14 to install Nvidia drivers?

Postby BigCheese on Fri Jan 04, 2013 4:13 pm

Hey!
I've done quite a bit of google-ing on how to install nvidia drivers (since Mint doesn't seem to correctly recognize my graphics card) and found quite a few posts on here about a similar problem, but all about older versions of Mint.
Now, I'm completely new to Linux (I don't even know what exactly x server is...) so any tips on what x server actually does and what else I need to be careful about are also greatly appreciated.

Thanks!

P.S. I'm using a thinkpad t430 with an nvidia NVS 5400M in case that's relevant.

Edit: I'm trying to install the 310.14 driver btw
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Re: How do I kill X Server on Mint 14 to install Nvidia driv

Postby mank_in on Fri Jan 04, 2013 8:53 pm

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Sorry for my bad English , I am Indonesian.
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Re: How do I kill X Server on Mint 14 to install Nvidia driv

Postby billmc on Sat Jan 05, 2013 2:48 am

X is the graphical environment. It consists of a server and a client. It is exactly opposite of what you would normally consider the server/client relationship to be. In this case, the server is on the machine you are using, generating the graphical display you see. The client, is the program sending its output to the server. The client can be on your machine or another machine.

Even though the philosphy is to use sudo for everything, I still like have "root" access. One of the first things I do after installing is to change root's password, so I can su to root if need be. I do this with the sudo command:
sudo passwd
it'll ask you for your password, then twice ask for the new unix password. The one you give twice will be root's password.

Linux has multiple terminals availble, generally on a single box, only one is graphical, the rest are command line. Default setup gives us 6 other command line terminals to use. You access each one by pressing the Alt key, the Ctrl key, and one of the function keys F1 through F7; F7 is the graphical environment.

Lets use terminal 2, at the same time press Ctrl-Alt-F2
you'll switch to a command line, with a prompt asking to login. You can login as yourself, or if you established a password for root, you can login as root.

Let's assume you logged in as yourself.
Mint 14 is using mdm as a display manager. To stop it from running issue the following command -> sudo pkill mdm
It'll ask for your password, then if sucessful you won't see anything, you'll just end up back at the prompt. You can Kill a process using the kill command, if you know the process number, but we'd need to look that up, it varies. pkill allows you to use the process name, so in this case, any process running called mdm will be "Killed". (For whatever reason, I had 2 mdm processes running.)

I just installed the Nvidia driver myself today. The script I download, was not by default, marked as executable. (Its different from windows, there are no .exe files. Google linux file permissions to learn about this.) If you got the same file I did, its called:
NVIDIA-Linux-x86_64-313.09.run

To run it type ->
sudo sh ./NVIDIA-Linux-x86_64-313.09.run

The sudo command will ask for your password, then allow the command to be run as root. root needs to install this stuff.
Issuing sh infront of the file name, will start a sperate shell and allow you to run the file without having to mark it as being executable.

When propmted to use DKMS say yes, otherwise you'll be going through this process each time the kernel gets updated. When it finishes, you'll need to reboot. You should come back up into the graphical logon screen.

Good Luck, mine went without a hitch.
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Re: How do I kill X Server on Mint 14 to install Nvidia driv

Postby BigCheese on Sat Jan 05, 2013 7:10 am

First of all, thanks a lot for the effort you put into that reply!

Unfortunately, the installation apparently went terribly wrong.
I am currently trapped with a resolution of 640x480 and Mint/Cinnamon looks really primitive and not at all like I set it up originally.

During the installation (and I did it as you told me), I was told that it wouldn't be possible to install the driver with something called Nouveau active, so I followed the instructions to disable that. After that, the installation went on and finished and I rebooted. And now the resolution is terrible, unchangable, and I can't delete the file that disables Nouveau...

It'd be great if someone could help me out here... :|

Edit: I'll reboot again and see if anything changes...
Edit2: nothing changed...
Edit3: I managed to remove the file blocking Nouveau and rebooted but nothing changed. Also, in System Details, Mint doesn't recognize any graphics card at all, as opposed to an incorrect name beforhand. (I have an nvidia card and it used to display it as some Intel card or something, dunno why)
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Re: How do I kill X Server on Mint 14 to install Nvidia driv

Postby billmc on Sat Jan 05, 2013 5:30 pm

Don't panic. I'm not an expert, but I'll try to help you as best I can.
During the installation (and I did it as you told me), I was told that it wouldn't be possible to install the driver with something called Nouveau active, so I followed the instructions to disable that. After that, the installation went on and finished and I rebooted. And now the resolution is terrible, unchangable, and I can't delete the file that disables Nouveau...

As they say, "Ya done good,son". The same thing happened to me.

Edit3: I managed to remove the file blocking Nouveau and rebooted but nothing changed]

I hope you haven't removed the proprietary driver yet. I think when mine first came up, it had a resolution of 800x600, which actually made it almost impossible to see the menu button at the lower left portion of the screen, but it was there. I slowly moved my mouse in that direction and when I saw it move just out of sight, I clicked, and it brought the menu up, where I could read it and use it.

Let's go back to the terminal for a moment and install another program, well use TTY2 again, just like the last time -> Ctrl-Alt-F2.

When you get there login. We are going to use apt to install some programs. First, let's make sure your repository listing is up to date, issue the following command:

sudo apt-get update

It'll ask you for your password, then you'll see it go out and download a number of files. What it is doing, is getting a current listing of all files available for you to install. Once its done, we'll search for the files we are looking for. In my system, I installed the nVidia X server configuration utility. Quit honestly, I just looked, and I have several different versions installed, and I can't tell exactly which one I'm using. Issue the following command:

sudo apt-cache search nvidia-settings

Here's what I see when I do this:

sudo apt-cache search nvidia-settings
[sudo] password for bill:
nvidia-settings - Tool for configuring the NVIDIA graphics driver
nvidia-settings-experimental-304 - Tool of configuring the NVIDIA graphics driver
nvidia-settings-updates - Tool for configuring the NVIDIA graphics driver
sensors-applet - Display readings from hardware sensors in your Gnome panel
nvidia-settings-experimental-310 - Tool for configuring the NVIDIA graphics driver

I'd suggest that you begin with trying the non-experimental version first. If that doesn't work, you can always come back and try the other. I'm also going to have you install any packages that are recommended. These aren't strickly necessary to make things work, but sometimes can be helpful. What we'll be looking for are the packages nvidia-settings and nvidia-settings-updates. Automatically these will bring in any other package they need. After this command, you'll be presented with a list of packages to install, telling you how much will be downloaded, and how much space will be used. When asked if you want to continue, answer y.

sudo apt-get install --install-suggests nvidia-settings-updates

You do not need to logout of this terminal at this time, if you don't want to. The only reason I suggest staying logged in, is in case we have to go back and try a newer package. If evrything works OK, you can log out and switch back, or you'll automatically get logged out the next time you reboot.

If that command completed OK, with no errors, you should now have installed the nVidia progam to set up your screen. Switch back to the graphical terminal -> Ctrl-Alt-F7

As I said I did, move your mouse into the lower left corner and click, see if you can bring up the menu selections. In my system, listed alphabetcally under preferences, I have a program called NVIDIA X Server Settings. If you find that, you can start it and should be able to configure your screen so its more useable.

If that one doesn't work, go back and install the experimental version, from the terminal, and give that one a try.

By the way, in *nix you use the "man" command (short for manual) to see the help files. If you want to learn more about the commands I've told you to use, or any other command, you would issue the command man followed by the name of the command you are trying to learn about. For instance, the apt command:

man apt

It will bring up an entire file to read how to use the command. You move through it, a page at a time, using the space bar, or a line at a time with the enter key or down arrow. The b key will move you backwards through the help file.

Good Luck
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