DIY on changing video drivers?

Hi: I was searching around for a nice DIY - I am getting a new ATI card to replace my cheaper NVidia card, and need to remove the drivers I compiled for the NVidia. I think OpenSuSE 11.1 x86_64 will detect that the card doesn’t match the driver and simply boot into a low-res VGA mode after I swap out the cards. Or it might fail to boot into KDE, and dump me at a command line. Then I could replace the xorg.conf with the original, default xorg.conf and reboot? After that, I can install the ATI drivers from KDE…

(does that sound right?)


openSUSE-11.1 will likely dump you at a command prompt or just freeze.

If it were me, I would :
(1) download applicable ATI proprietary graphic driver and put it somewhere that I can find it from a command line, and also ensure I had kernel-source and kernel-syms (and linux-kernel-headers) installed.
(2) shutdown, put in the new card,
(3) boot straight to run level 3 (type 3 in grub menu options line)
(4) backup /etc/X11/xorg.conf to some name that tells me its for my nvidia ( ie xorg.conf.backup.nvidia
(5) test ability to boot to vesa driver: sax2 -r -m 0=vesa followed by a reboot and test of X;
(6) after testing, then reboot again to run level 3 and install openGL driver with: sax2 -r -m 0=radeon … or sax2 -r -m 0=radeonhd (dependant on card) followed by a reboot and a test of X
(7) after testing, then reboot again to run level 3, install ati proprietary driver “the hard way”, configure xorg.conf with either aticonfig file or sax2 with appropriate arguments, and reboot and test X.

Thanks for the great how-to! It’s always best to make backups of my data (including xorg.conf)!

Noooo please don’t buy ATi in conjunction with Linux. I beg of you :slight_smile:

If you need some links you might want try these which is pretty much what oldcpu has written.

ATI - openSUSE

ATI/The Hard Way - openSUSE

The radeonhd and vesa drivers work pretty well if you don’t need 3d. In fact 11.2 out of the box just worked great. I remember the time when we were lucky to have any drivers for any graphics cards. I find that Opensuse is one of the better distro’s for installing any graphics card on, I would not be surprised that they will get the one-click install working again soon.