Bug#735049: nvidia-support: Debconf prompts are misleading for NVIDIA Optimus users

Vincent Cheng vcheng at debian.org
Tue Jan 14 13:05:34 UTC 2014

On Sun, Jan 12, 2014 at 4:15 AM, Andreas Beckmann <anbe at debian.org> wrote:
> On 2014-01-12 11:56, Vincent Cheng wrote:
>> Installing bumblebee-nvidia (for optimus support) also pulls in the
>> proprietary nvidia packages, along with nvidia-support; during the
>> installation process, the user will see a debconf prompt saying that a
>> xorg.conf snippet must be used to enable the nvidia driver
>> (nvidia-support/create-nvidia-conf), which does not apply for nvidia
>> optimus users and will break glx on the user's main display if the
>> user blindly follows those debconf prompts.
> Aren't there three ways to run such a system:
> * in Intel mode (no non-free driver installed, no promts shown)
> * in Nvidia mode (only NVIDIA gpu, needs xorg.conf adjustment)
> * in Bumblebee mode (no xorg.conf adjustment needed)
> So this should be restricted to the bumblebee case, shouldn't it?

Yes, although mux-less optimus laptops are by far the more common
scenario, so option 2 is unavailable for many users, and we don't
particularly care about option 1 since the user wouldn't install the
nvidia packages in that case.

> + Ignore this message if you have a laptop with NVIDIA Optimus technology
> + (dual Intel and NVIDIA GPUs).
> Or can we somehow detect Optimus systems and show an entirely different
> template there?

Ack, probably a better idea than just assuming the user knows how to
determine if their laptop uses optimus or not. How Canonical does this
in their nvidia-prime package can be found at [1], which requires
nothing more than lspci (not sure if we can just assume pciutils is
available). I guess we could check for optimus systems in a similar
manner somewhere in postinst, and then just avoid triggering the
nvidia-support/create-nvidia-conf template?

(First email ever using my @debian.org address, yippee! ;)


[1] https://github.com/tseliot/nvidia-prime/blob/master/prime-supported

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