Questions regarding Debian nvidia packages

Andreas Beckmann anbe at
Wed Sep 10 06:27:40 UTC 2014

On 2014-09-05 11:04, Vincent Cheng wrote:
> Hi Andreas,
> Just a few questions for you now that you're back (welcome back!),
> relating to nvidia-graphics-drivers:
> 1) Why do we replace upstream's with our own? It wasn't at
> all clear to me what its purpose was when I first started working on
> nvidia-graphics-drivers...regardless, I'm a bit concerned about the
> extra maintenance cost and it being a source of Debian-specific bugs,
> e.g. [1][2]. I also wanted to ask you about [2] specifically. does not work on Debian kernels (patches welcome)

> 2) What's the process of splitting and uploading a new legacy driver?
> According to [3], the 340 series is the next legacy driver (being the
> last version to support pre-Fermi cards it seems), and I've yet to
> stumble across documentation describing all the gotchas that are
> involved in packaging a new legacy driver. As for timing, would you
> agree that this is best done after Jessie is released?

That sounds like a good idea -> nothing newer than 340.xx max go to
unstable, and we have a long-term release in jessie where we may get
upstream update releases (think security)

> 3) Upstream bumblebee devs want me to ask you why the nvidia module
> was renamed (nvidia-current in latest driver, nvidia-xxx for the
> legacy drivers AFAIK), and frankly I don't really understand the
> rationale myself. Would you care to explain to upstream on github [4]?

to be able to have both current and legacy kernel modules available and
decide at runtime (i.e without installing/removing packages) which one
to load
can't use alternatives on the module itself since there may be any
number of kernels installed

> Also, they've pointed out that if the nvidia module is renamed, why
> isn't nvidia-uvm renamed as well?

so far there was no legacy -uvm

> That probably covers all the remaining questions I have w.r.t.
> nvidia-graphics-drivers, everything else I sort of pieced together on
> my own (I think).
> Regards,
> Vincent
> [1] #755462 (cause of FTBFS in the legacy driver was a missing
> function I forgot to backport from
> nvidia-graphics-drivers)
> [2]
> [3]
> [4]

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