Fedora 12 + Nvidia

By default Fedora 12 comes with the nouveau driver.. which is awesome, but my machine at work needed a bit more video card grunt so I needed to install the Nvidia driver.

Now I’m new to Fedora.. as in installed it an hour before I wrote this post, so thought I’d document here how to do it.
It wasn’t as straight forward as it _should_ have been, as apparently there is a bug in the current (at time of writing) version of Xorg, which causes X to run really slow. Anyway this is what you do:

  1. Add the rpmfusion repositories (to gain access to proprietary and other packages not supported by Fedora).
    su -c 'rpm -Uvh http://download1.rpmfusion.org/free/fedora/rpmfusion-free-release-stable.noarch.rpm http://download1.rpmfusion.org/nonfree/fedora/rpmfusion-nonfree-release-stable.noarch.rpm'
  2. Update yum:
    sudo yum update
  3. Now install the Nvidia drivers:
    sudo yum install kmod-nvidia xorg-x11-drv-nvidia-libs.i686 xorg-x11-drv-nvidia-libs.x86_64
  4. This should blacklist the nouveau, but doesn’t remove it from the initrd, so we run:
    sudo dracut -f /boot/initramfs-$(uname -r).img $(uname -r)
  5. Then we can restart, or just restart X (sudo pkill kdm) to see the new Nvidia card in action.

You should now been using the new nvidia module, however on my Fedora 12 KDE installation the X response time was really slow. However on a friends Fedora 12 Gnome installation there wasn’t an issue.
Apparently it is a bug in Xorg, but seeing as it doesn’t effect a friend it makes me wonder if it is a KDE/Xorg/Nvidia bug.

Anyway to fix it up we need to install a patched Xorg:

  1. First we need to add a repository:
    sudo vim /etc/yum.repos.d/xorgFix.repo
    And paste the contents:
    [rdieter]
    name=xorg-x11-server rebuilds for nvidia users
    baseurl=http://rdieter.fedorapeople.org/repo/fedora/$releasever/$basearch/
    enabled=1
    gpgcheck=0
  2. Run ‘yum update’  again, and it should need to update Xorg. Update it then restart X.

X should now run correctly. Phew.. not too hard right.