Strange text "stuttering" issue with 545 and 550 beta driver

I’m having a very hard time thinking of a way to describe the issue I’m seeing, but the best I can say is that when I type, characters seem to be drawn, then blink away quickly, and then get drawn again. Doing screen captures does not capture the event, so I took videos with my phone.

Here is the behaviour with the functional 535 driver.

Here is the behaviour with the 545 and 550 drivers.

I have a Dell XPS 15 (13th Gen Core i9-13900H) and I am using Ubuntu 22.04. The output of nvidia-smi is:

$ nvidia-smi
Mon Feb 12 08:35:51 2024       
| NVIDIA-SMI 535.154.05             Driver Version: 535.154.05   CUDA Version: 12.2     |
| GPU  Name                 Persistence-M | Bus-Id        Disp.A | Volatile Uncorr. ECC |
| Fan  Temp   Perf          Pwr:Usage/Cap |         Memory-Usage | GPU-Util  Compute M. |
|                                         |                      |               MIG M. |
|   0  NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4060 ...    On  | 00000000:01:00.0 Off |                  N/A |
| N/A   47C    P4              13W /  35W |    504MiB /  8188MiB |      7%      Default |
|                                         |                      |                  N/A |
| Processes:                                                                            |
|  GPU   GI   CI        PID   Type   Process name                            GPU Memory |
|        ID   ID                                                             Usage      |
|    0   N/A  N/A      3225      G   /usr/lib/xorg/Xorg                          269MiB |
|    0   N/A  N/A      3812      G   /usr/bin/gnome-shell                        122MiB |
|    0   N/A  N/A      7248      G   ...sion,SpareRendererForSitePerProcess       38MiB |
|    0   N/A  N/A      7382      G   ...yOnDemand --variations-seed-version       65MiB |

And I also ran prime-select query:

$ prime-select query

Has anyone else seen this? I read some other topics about “flickering” with the 545 driver, but then saw that the 550 beta driver had resolved the issue. Unfortunately, that was not the case for my issue.

You are probably experiencing all of the goodness of lack of both implicit sync and explicit sync for xwayland apps if you are running a wayland session.
Just search “nvidia xwayland explicit sync” on your favorite search engine.

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Thanks! I’ll do that. Would that account for the fact that it was not an issue in the 535 driver, but is an issue in 545 and later?

Erik, a nvidia developer mentioned on the explicit sync merge request that they did some underlying driver changes in preparation for explicit sync.
Since nvidia doesn’t offer implicit sync (like amd and intel do via mesa drivers) NOR explicit sync is properly implemented yet they are basically in this limbo of not having any synchronization primitive for xwayland apps.

You can see the MR and the discussion here

tl;dr; is:
Keep using 535 OR find a distro that can provide you a fully patched xwayland stack with explicit sync patches otherwise 545/550 will be nothing but disappointment
Another alternative is fallback to Xorg/X11 instead of using wayland

1 Like

Thank you very much!

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