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Re: Getting nVidia to load

On Thu, 2 Jan 2003, Larry Hunsicker wrote:

> I am not sure why, in my setup, the nvidia kernel "make install" didn't
> add the line to /etc/modules.  The nVidia folks may not have wanted to
> force this at boot up.  But their documentation probably should note
> that one needs to add this line to get the module loaded automatically.

It doesn't need to be added, at least on my setup.

$ /sbin/lsmod | fgrep nvidia
nvidia               1467456  10 (autoclean)

$ fgrep nvidia /etc/modules

But I've installed the nvidia drivers twice now -- once via the debian
source packages and once from using the tarballs from nvidia and following
their instructions.  So maybe when I used the Debian sources it added the
file to modutils to demand load.

  $ cat /etc/modutils/nvidia-kernel-2.4.18-xfs-athlon 
  alias /dev/nvidia* nvidia
  alias char-major-195 nvidia

How module loading works is one of those unanswered questions I've posted
to the debian-user list before.  I think I understand insmod, and that
modprobe uses modules.dep to load dependencies, but I don't really
understand modules.conf and how it works with modproble.

I've read the "alias" part of the man page for modules.conf but still
don't understand what those "alias" lines above do.

My *guess* is that the X nvidia_drv.o module opens /dev/nvidia* and that
causes a demand load of the nvidia driver.  But if that's the case I'm
curious at what point the modules.conf file is parsed -- if that happens
at boot or when /dev/nvidia* is accessed.

Doesn't seem likely that it happens each time a device is accessed as that
would be a lot of parsing of modules.conf.

So if it happens at boot time then what loads that info into the kernel?

Of course, I may have it all wrong.  It probably works by magic.

Bill Moseley moseley@hank.org

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