Not very hard, actually. I’ve been doing it that way.
Here are the steps:
I downloaded the driver (from the nvidia site) to “/usr/local/src”. The actual driver file is “NVIDIA-Linux-x86_64-304.121.run”. I make sure that it is the only file in that directory that matches NVIDIA*run
I setup grub to boot with “nomodeset”. I did this by editing “/etc/default/grub”. I rebooted for this to take effect.
Before install, I logged out of my desktop. I used CTRL-ALT-F1 to get a virtual console (tty) session, and logged in there as root.
# telinit 3
That switched me to init level 3, so that X is not running anywhere.
I then did:
# sh /usr/local/src/NVIDIA*run
and answered the prompts.
After the install completed, I rebooted to check that it came up properly with the NVIDIA driver (it did).
The downside to this method:
After any kernel update, I won’t have a desktop, and will have to repeat the install (the command beginning “sh”).
I’m not at all sure that it will work for a 3.14 kernel. That is to say, I am not sure that the installer is compatible with 3.14 kernels.
If I ever want to revert to nouveau, I’ll have to reinstall every library that the NVIDIA install replaced.
I have kubuntu 14.04 on my nvidia computer. If I use the grub installed by kubuntu, I finish up in a tty. If I boot using the grub installed by opensuse, I finish up in the kubuntu desktop.
I’m not sure why that happens. As best I can tell, the significant difference is that the opensuse installed grub runs in a graphic mode, while the kubuntu installed grub runs in a non-graphic (i.e. ascii terminal) mode. I’m not sure why that matters. I originally installed opensuse with non-graphic grub mode, and later switched (to test something). But the nvidia drivers loaded properly either way for opensuse. I’m not sure what is different about kubuntu.