Debian Buster & NVIDIA C61 (GeForce 6150SE)

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Debian Buster & NVIDIA C61 (GeForce 6150SE)

Postby dany-r5 » 2020-05-04 07:06

Hello,

I struggled for a while to make my nVidia GeForce 6150SE nForce 430 graphics card work with Debian Buster (10.3.0), and I would like to share with you the solution I found.

Here a brief log of what I tried:
I installed Debian 10 with GNOME Desktop (using default nouveau driver) and I have a system freeze just after gdm login.
I tried to customize a xorg.conf file for nouveau without success.

Then I tried to install proprietary nvidia driver. Below nvidia-detect command (in non-free repositories) output:

Code: Select all
# nvidia-detect

Detected NVIDIA GPUs:
00:0d.0 VGA compatible controller [0300]: NVIDIA Corporation C61 [GeForce 6150SE nForce 430] [10de:03d0] (rev a2)

Checking card:  NVIDIA Corporation C61 [GeForce 6150SE nForce 430] (rev a2)
Your card is only supported by the 304 legacy drivers series, which is only available up to stretch.

Unfortunately, nvidia-legacy-304xx-driver is no longer available in Debian buster non-free repositories and I didn't manage to install it from sid or stretch-backports due to dependency problems.
So I tried to install 304 driver from Nvidia.com (last version NVIDIA-Linux-x86_64-304.137.run).
I spare you the details but I didn't found a way of installing it, I think this driver is not compatible with linux kernel 4.19.0 or xserver-xorg version.

Finally, the solution I found is to install LXDE desktop and select lightdm.
Code: Select all
# apt install lxde

After reboot all works OK.
EDIT: :idea: It seems that installing firmware-misc-nonfree can also help. I couldn't try it yet.

Just I had a poor screen resolution in my ACER AL1916W screen.
To solve this I used cvt command, I created a simple /etc/X11/xorg.conf file and added a Modeline to it.
(note that you can test the screen mode given by cvt using xrandr command, but this will be lost at reboot)

Code: Select all
# cvt 1440 900
# 1440x900 59.89 Hz (CVT 1.30MA) hsync: 55.93 kHz; pclk: 106.50 MHz
Modeline "1440x900_60.00"  106.50  1440 1528 1672 1904  900 903 909 934 -hsync +vsync

Here my working xorg.conf file.
EDIT: :!: Note I used Option "NoAccel" in order to solve system freeze when launching LibreOffice. This disables hardware acceleration, if you don't have this issue better don't use this Option.

Code: Select all
Section "Monitor"
   Identifier   "Monitor0"
   VendorName   "ACER"
   ModelName    "AL1916W"
   Modeline     "1440x900_60.00"  106.50  1440 1528 1672 1904  900 903 909 934 -hsync +vsync
   Option       "PreferredMode" "1440x900_60.00"
EndSection

Section "Device"
   Identifier  "Device0"
   Driver      "nouveau"
   BusID       "PCI:0:13:0"
   Option      "Monitor0"
   Option      "NoAccel"
EndSection

Section "Screen"
   Identifier "Screen0"
   Device     "Device0"
   Monitor    "Monitor0"
   DefaultDepth    24
   SubSection "Display"
      Viewport   0 0
      Depth     24
      Modes   "1440x900" "1024x768" "640x480"
   EndSubSection
EndSection

Section "ServerLayout"
    Identifier "Layout1"
    Screen "Screen0"
EndSection

I hope this can help someone else.

EDIT: Curiously GNOME desktop is also working now. This would mean that some LXDE dependency solves the problem with graphic card ??
Sorry, I think this post must be moved into HELP/Hardware section of the forum.
Last edited by dany-r5 on 2020-05-06 12:09, edited 5 times in total.
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Re: HOWTO Debian Buster & NVIDIA C61 (GeForce 6150SE)

Postby Head_on_a_Stick » 2020-05-04 09:31

dany-r5 wrote:I installed Debian 10 with GNOME Desktop (using default nouveau driver) and I have a system freeze just after gdm login.

Did you try installing the firmware-misc-nonfree package? That includes firmware for several NVIDIA cards, nouveau won't work properly for those cards without it.

dany-r5 wrote:So I tried to install 304 driver from Nvidia.com

Why didn't you try the version from the Debian repositories? That does work with the 4.19 kernel & buster's X server and it doesn't need rebuilding manually after kernel updates.

dany-r5 wrote:After reboot all works OK. Just I had a poor screen resolution in my ACER AL1916W screen.

Probably because you don't have the firmware.

dany-r5 wrote:Note the NoAccel option, without this I had system freeze when launching LibreOffice.

You have disabled hardware acceleration, which isn't a good idea. Hardware acceleration probably doesn't work because you don't have the firmware.
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Re: HOWTO Debian Buster & NVIDIA C61 (GeForce 6150SE)

Postby dany-r5 » 2020-05-06 07:33

Following your comments I have made some test and I just found that GNOME is also working now. I don't understand why :?

Head_on_a_Stick wrote:Did you try installing the firmware-misc-nonfree package? That includes firmware for several NVIDIA cards, nouveau won't work properly for those cards without it.

I didn't try this, I didn't know this package. I am not able to reproduce the system freeze now in order to test if this helps.

Head_on_a_Stick wrote:Why didn't you try the version from the Debian repositories? That does work with the 4.19 kernel & buster's X server and it doesn't need rebuilding manually after kernel updates.

Because nvidia-legacy-304xx-driver is no longer available in buster repositories, I forgot writing it in my post, I have just added it. I tried to install it from sid backports but it didn't work due to dependencies problem.

Head_on_a_Stick wrote:Probably because you don't have the firmware.

I don't have it indeed, I didn't manage to find it.

Head_on_a_Stick wrote:You have disabled hardware acceleration, which isn't a good idea. Hardware acceleration probably doesn't work because you don't have the firmware.

Yes, this is probably not the best thing to do but I didn't find a better solution. I also added a warning in my post.
Last edited by dany-r5 on 2020-05-06 12:02, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: HOWTO Debian Buster & NVIDIA C61 (GeForce 6150SE)

Postby Head_on_a_Stick » 2020-05-06 11:44

dany-r5 wrote:Because nvidia-legacy-304xx-driver is no longer available in buster repositories

Oh yes, sorry, I missed that detail.

The reason why GNOME doesn't work is because it requires hardware acceleration, which I'm pretty sure would be available under nouveau as long as the non-free firmware was installed.
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Re: HOWTO Debian Buster & NVIDIA C61 (GeForce 6150SE)

Postby dany-r5 » 2020-05-06 12:00

Head_on_a_Stick wrote:The reason why GNOME doesn't work is because it requires hardware acceleration, which I'm pretty sure would be available under nouveau as long as the non-free firmware was installed.

Ok, I will also add this to my post.
Anyway, all is working fine for me without hardware acceleration, GNOME also. To turn it off was the only solution I found to solve system freeze when opening LibreOffice.
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