Nvidias native drivers: How to install


every time a new version of openSuSE is released, I seem to go through the same cycle. However, this time I am stuck quite at the beginning.

I had openSuSE 11.2 running quite nicely, especially the graphics was good. I am using a Nvidia GeForce 8800 with the drivers from the Nvidia Web pages.

However, I had trouble getting the driver installed when SuSE 11.2 came out. The version at release time did not work for the release.

Maybe it is the same for SuSE 11.3 but I don’t know. All I know is that I can compile the kernel module but when the installation procedure tries to load it. an error message is produced:
“ERROR: Unable to load the kernel module ‘nvidia.ko’. This happens most
frequently when this kernel module was built against the wrong or
improperly configured kernel sources, with a version of gcc that differs
from the one used to build the target kernel, or if a driver such as
rivafb/nvidiafb is present and prevents the NVIDIA kernel module from
obtaining ownership of the NVIDIA graphics device(s), or NVIDIA GPU
installed in this system is not supported by this NVIDIA Linux graphics
driver release.”

I tried to recompile the kernel (but did not try to install the compiled kernel, yet). This helped with 11.2 but no use for 11.3.

Now you could say that there I could stick with the open source implementation of the driver which of course works, well, to some degree … If I configure my two screens it immediately forgets about this when I log off!!! Not on reboot, when I log off!!! The transparency of windows when I move them does not work either …

You might ask why I bother to try 11.3. Well, I do aks myself too, when I see the result of it but I thought I at least give it a try.

I actually do not really understand why people waste their time with developing a driver which is not really comparable to what already is there instead of giving people better support to actually use the good stuff that is out there.

Anyway, if somebody could give me a hint what I need to do to get the native Nvidia driver installed on openSuSE 11.3. I would be grateful for the support.

Just to be complete: I am talking about NVIDIA-Linux-x86_64-256.35.run
This is the version that I got for download from the Nvidia pages today.

Thank you very much for your help,


openSUSE Graphic Card Practical Theory Guide for Users

SDB:NVIDIA drivers - openSUSE

You may have the wrong (old) kernel headers make sure your kernel-source and/or header packages match the new kernel.

Please take a look at the release notes:

openSUSE Factory Release Notes

With openSUSE 11.3 we are switching to KMS (Kernel Mode Setting) for Intel, ATI and NVIDIA graphics, which now is our default. If you encounter problems with the KMS driver support (intel, radeon, nouveau), disable KMS by adding nomodeset to the kernel boot command line. To set this permanently, add it to the kernel command line in /boot/grub/menu.lst. This option makes sure the appropriate kernel module (intel, radeon, nouveau) is loaded with modeset=0 in initrd, i.e. KMS is disabled.
In the rare cases when loading the DRM module from initrd is a general problem and unrelated to KMS, it is even possible to disable loading of the DRM module in initrd completely. For this set the NO_KMS_IN_INITRD sysconfig variable to yes via YAST, which then recreates initrd afterwards. Reboot your machine.
On Intel without KMS the Xserver falls back to the fbdev driver (the intel driver only supports KMS). On ATI for current GPUs it falls back to radeonhd. On NVIDIA without KMS the nv driver is used (the nouveau driver only supports KMS).

You have to start the system with the additional boot parameter nomodeset and you will be able to install and use the nvidia driver.

(I had the same problem and solved the problem by adding this parameter with the grub editing tool from yast)

greeetings Kump

As posted above. I also had to add “nomodeset” to the /boot/grub/menu.1st. This allowed me to compile and install the NVIDIA driver (using FX3800). Before this I was getting a blank screen.