The video card in question is GeForce 6600GT. As a distro I’m using CrunchBang Linux, kernel: 3.12-1-686-pae SMP Debian 3.12.9-1 (2014-02-01) i686
At first I tried the recommended proprietary driver (.run) which is 304.121, and I successfully installed the drivers using this wonderful guide: http://crunchbang.org/forums/viewtopic.php?id=19398. As I saw it had problems I decided to try other driver versions (see below). Then I tried to install the distro’s driver using this guide on the Debian wiki. Everything works as expected after starting the X session, aside from a few quirks:
- higher RAM usage, after a fresh install #! would take about 70-90MB RAM on a fresh boot, but now it takes about 340MB RAM with the driver. I find this rather weird, I mean I know that more hardware acceleration means more RAM usage… but not a whopping 250MB RAM
- Firefox, Thunar, and a few other programs are very sluggish. In Firefox when loading pages or scrolling on the page and CPU usage spikes to 100% quite a few times. Even now as I’m typing this the CPU stays around 20%
- lots of tearing
- not using my monitor’s native resolution
But regardless of all this everything else works fine, for example moving windows around or resizing them doesn’t cause any tearing or sluggishness, and doesn’t take a lot of CPU, also I can play HD h.264 videos! You might wonder if I’m insane or why do I get so excited over this, but I wouldn’t be able to do that under Windowze without opting in for a slideshow! And not to mention it barely gets over 60% CPU! W00T.
So then I decided to try the older drivers to see if any of the fix anything, so this is what proprietary I tried so far:
304.121, 304.119, 304.117: All work but with the aforementioned problems.
304.116: Returns X11 errors when I try to start slim (#!'s GDM). Xorg.log
304.88, 304.84, 173.14.37: refuses to build, nvidia-installer.log.
304.64-304.51: reports it can’t find the headers under ‘/lib/modules/3.12-1-686-pae/build/include/linux/version.h’. What I find weird about this is the fact that the other drivers compiled/were built without complaining about this… I haven’t tried any earlier versions than this as I thought that they would probably give the same errors
173.14.39, 173.14.38: Installs fine, but it borks my X session, after starting slim, the PC freezes, I can’t switch back to the TTY, can only restart. 173.14.38 Xorg.log
325.15: Prompted me to get the legacy drivers (which I did) and told me that my GPU will be ignored by this driver
Bug report: http://s000.tinyupload.com/index.php?file_id=63990485262245931524