Ubuntu 12.10 and Discrete Video Card

One of the main driver things that I have to install is the video card.  My laptop has a discrete video card.  Without installing the driver, the graphics seem to work pretty well, but with the driver, I get a very noticeable improvement in power consumption.  After installing the driver, the battery lasts significantly longer.  Also, glxspheres does a nice job of showing the graphics performance difference with and without the acceleration.

Attempt #1

For the discrete video card, you need to install Bumblebee.  Here’s what I found:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:bumblebee/stable
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install bumblebee bumblebee-nvidia

Previously, I had an issue with the nvidia driver version.  I think that is cleared up now:

sudo apt-get install apt-show-versions
apt-show-versions nvidia-current

Then, I had to edit /etc/bumblebee/xorg.conf.nvidia (sudo vi /etc/bumblebee/xorg.conf.nvidia).  I set the ConnectedMonitor option to none.

And, I edited /etc/bumblebee/bumblebee.conf (sudo vi /etc/bumblebee/bumblebee.conf).

Unfortunately, this didn’t work.  I was still missing something.

Attempt #2

Removed the custom repository:

sudo ppa-purge ppa:bumblebee/stable

Installed the packages:

sudo apt-get purge bbswitch-dkms bumblebee-nvidia bumblebee

 

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:ubuntu-x-swat/x-updates

I also changed the ConnectedMonitor settings to CRT:

I am not sure whether it was adding the ubuntu-x-swat repository or changing the ConnectedMonitor option.  Either way, it worked for me, and I didn’t want to mess with it afterward.

Testing

Run:

optirun glxspheres

Here is a screenshot of running with and without “optirun” side by side:

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