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Re: Maybe I need a better video card? Editing xorg.conf?

Dear Klaus,

> Hello Andrew,
> On Tue, Sep 27, 2011 at 09:06:27PM -0400, Andrew wrote:
>> Dear Klaus,
>> Thanks so much for the suggestion, but
>> > sudo aptitude update
>> > sudo aptitude install -t unstable nvidia-kernel-dkms nvidia-glx
>> > nvidia-settings
>> didn't work out. :(  After unpacking the kernel source in /usr/src and
>> reinstalling the packages, things were still not right:
> "After unpacking the kernel source in /usr/src" means in this context
> that the nvidia kernel modules were unpacked and compiled with dkms
> automatically, right?
> But, "reinstalling the packages"? Which ones?

No actually, what I meant was that I unpacked the kernel source tree in
the archive in /KNOPPIX/usr/src into /usr/src.  The sequence of events was
this:  I initially set up the persistent overlay, ran the two aptitude
commands, and rebooted, that produced very bad results (similar to the
behavior with nouveau immediately after running a 3d screensaver), so I

sudo aptitude reinstall -t unstable nvidia-kernel-dkms nvidia-glx

and paid close attention to the output.  It said something about skipping
compiling some drivers due to not have proper kernel sources installed on
the machine.  So, I went to /usr/src and unpacked the kernel sources in
the .tar.bz archive, and then ran

sudo aptitude reinstall -t unstable nvidia-kernel-dkms nvidia-glx

again and rebooted again.  The behavior was improved, but still

>>  The mouse tracking seemed right, but the middle button (2) didn't work
>> (on two test mice), menu items vanished on mouse-over (reappearing
>> afterwards) and all the windows' buttons lacked outlines, even the
>> lxsession-logout dialog.
> If you get a difference related to the original (nouveau) xorg
> installation, I guess that the nvidia installation was successful.  You
> probaby did the necessary reboot in order to unload nouveau and load
> nvidia.
> So, you now have the original proprietary nvidia drivers running. If
> even these don't work with your card, your card maybe needs the "legacy"
> nvidia package versions (like nvidia-kernel-legacy-96xx-dkms,
> nvidia-kernel-legacy-71xx-dkms, nvidia-kernel-legacy-173xx-dkms and the
> relatex xserver-xorg packages). Yes, it's a mess...

It's a mess, yes; certainly more trouble than it's worth, especially when
the problem and solution will probably change radically with the next
knoppix version (Hopefully, the radical change will be to 'no problem, no
solution required.'  It happened before and it will happen again.).

> Mouse issues should not be related to the video driver, however, I

(Go figure.  Reality constantly reminds me that it is not required to make

> cannot rule out that the nvidia xorg module also changes mouse settings
> in order to interface better with the graphics part, maybe even an older
> version of the mouse drivers was installed for matching the version of
> the graphics module.

The difference in latency could be purely in the video, but the mouse
button 2 failure is a mystery.  I didn't mention it to help in the
diagnosis, rather I was explaining why I found it unsatisfactory.  But
thanks for the info, anyway.  It does provide some insight into this
particular box full of problems (a.k.a. computer).

>> I think I will give an Intel or Radeon card a try, but if I can't reduce
>> the the number of tasks on the task bar to only those on the current
>> viewport, I will probably go "no3d", anyway.
> Or just try a different window manager, like KDE or gnome, if
> lxde/lxpanel lacks the feature. They surely have more features and
> settings. You can still use compiz with KDE or gnome by starting "compiz
> --replace" after KDE or Gnome startup.

I don't expect the "kicker" task bar to distinguish between compiz viewports.

If there *IS* a property (I can't find one) that *CAN* be used to
determine compiz viewport number, then probably the best solution would be
to use the compiz windows rules plugin.  It has a "Skip taskbar" rule: 
Now all I need is a test expression for "not in current viewport" to put
in the text box.  I tried everything I could think of.  Any ideas?

By the way, I loved KDE 3 in the earlier Knoppixes, but I am underwhelmed
with the new KDE provided in Knoppix 6.  I have only invested a few hours
in auditioning it, and perhaps it would be suitable after a great deal of
customizations, but for one thing, the start menu limits itself to reusing
a cell-phone display-sized region of my screen (similar to windows 7), and
I have to click to select something, and the list disappears, and I have
to use the back button, like it were a web browser or something.  It's
ridiculous.  I often have to do manual tree searches to find a program
that fits in multiple categories, which is no big deal with the lxpanel
menu applet (or the old KDE 3 menu).

Thanks again!


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