Additional Graphic card Driver’s ATI and Nvidia missing in Linux

I’ve been swapping over graphic cards recently and managed to mess up my drivers. It started with me removing my 7300GS and replacing with a HD4350 ummm, not a good idea I don’t seem to be able to find the right driver’s so I popped the 7300GS back in, now In Ubuntu it used to be possible to use a program called EnvyNG which would install ATI/Nvidia. Now in Linux Mint they are usualy listed under Additional Drivers but now I have none showing at all. I tried a quick Google but no answers forth coming there. Any way I popped across to Nvidia’s website and picked up the latest Ubuntu drivers, “” they wont install from a desktop so reboot and select Linux Mint recovery then at the prompt “drop to root shell” install from there it will tell you you are still in the wrong “runlevel” but explain how to switch to it and run the install file (Telinit 3 I think)
Having done this I ran the install file being sure to put “./” at the beginning as in “./” having done that I rebooted and tried to use my graphic’s, no go unless I was “root” hummmm, go into USER management and add youself to the “video” group, log out and back in again to be sure.
Job done graphic driver’s updated.

LOST ? Check your distribution

How bizarre, I think i’ve realised why I think i’m going a bit mad sometimes.
Its because before I installed Ubuntu 8.10 I had been using Linux Mint 6. Linux Mint, like a lot of distributions has it’s own way of doing things or laying things out, and has it’s own set of features and default tools. But now i’m using Ubuntu, and because Linux Mint is based on Ubuntu, it keeps fooling me with either missing options or a set of defaults different to the one’s i’m used to, or the “wrong” available programs making me search every where wondering where I saw something. Its only when I become truly exasperated that it dawn’s on me that it was a different distribution………..sigh. Anybody else have this problem ? .
Of course it would be very boring if distributions were all the same as it would remove a lot of choice and I guess that’s why you get die hard fans of each distro. For me I really like the look of Fedora but Ubuntu and Mint have been so easy to work with it may have to wait a bit longer before being installed. I imagine you have got your own favourite so feel free to share your distribution tales here.

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Nautilus, Laziness and making the command line easy

I’m using Ubuntu 8.10 at the moment and one of the things I miss from Linux Mint was the ability to right click in a folder and say “open terminal here” I actually mean select “open terminal here” if you can in fact say “open terminal here” and a terminal opens i’d be very interested to hear how it is done. Anyway I digress…I “Googled” for an answer and came across several scripts., well being the sort of person who will take a GUI before a CLI I looked around a bit further until I saw mention of “nautilus-open-terminal” so I fired up Synaptic and searched and lo and behold there it is, so it was just a case of select and then apply, and it was installed. That easy, as it so often is with Linux. 🙂

Dont just install Windows programs in Linux, install Windows in Linux !

I have used VirtualBox an Emulator in the past to get Linux running from within XP, so I thought I would try the Linux version and run XP in Linux. Using the Synaptic package manager in Linux Mint makes installing packages like VirtualBox very easy. If you are using a distribution that doesn’t allow easy installations of new software this might be the time to look for a replacement.
Setup of VirtualBox is easy too, just requiring you to select a boot medium and hard drives if required.
So place your Windows disc in the CD/DVD drive and set up a 4GB virtual hard drive, then just click Start, a new window will open looking very similar to a BIOS screen, (you may have seen one similar when starting your PC), then your Windows disc should start running, unfortunately I received a warning;
“VERR_VM_DRIVER_NOT_INSTALLED (RC=-1908) not loaded or permission problem. Try running “/etc/init.d/vboxdrv setup” in a Terminal.”
Further down this article you can read more about this but do you know what happened next ? I got bored to be honest, even with all the help available on the forums I couldn,t sort it so then I thought of a cunning plan and popped over to Wikipedia and looked for an article comparing virtual machines, and whilst in there I was reminded of QEMU.
Now I have experience of QEMU as it can boot my DamnSmallLinux USB drive from within Windows so i’m suprised I didn,t think of using it in reverse as per VirtualBox, but I had always thought of QEMU as a sort of DosBOX aimed more at DOS than Windows. So using Synaptic again I installed QEMU and QTEMU the graphical interface for QEMU.
Well it worked just fine for me and it wasn’t long before I had a fully functioning desktop.


I would certainly recommend QEMU at the moment and give them 10 out of 10.
My first tests will be to see which Windows games I can get running and what effect the emulation (running one operating system inside of another) has on the performance.

For the techies amongst you the following info. collected whilst trying to get VirtualBox working may be of some use to you.
This is the error message displayed when starting VirtualBox;
“VERR_VM_DRIVER_NOT_INSTALLED (RC=-1908) not loaded or permission problem. Try running “/etc/init.d/vboxdrv setup” in a Terminal.”

When I do, I get the message;
“usage start|stop|restart|status”
so no “setup” then :). I checked the status “/etc/init.d/vboxdrv status” which returned the message “VirtualBox Kernel module not loaded”

I have read and folowed through the article at the Ubuntu forum;
$sudo apt-get isntall linux-headers-`uname -r`

$sudo /etc/init.d/vboxdrv setup

But still no joy, what about “sudo apt-get update” they said ? or perhaps APT needs upgrading ? “sudo apt-get upgrade”

Finally this was suggested;
“Go System>Administration>Users and Groups

Enter Root Password

Manage Groups

Scroll down to VirtualBox Users>Properties

Tick your login name

OK>Close>Close etc


Then have another go at running VirtualBox”

Now I thought I might be getting somewhere here. But alas I do not have the virtualbox users, do I need to make this group?

“Try removing the old module” said Separ on the ubuntuforums;

Which leads me back to installing QEMU instead 🙂

Check the obvious for sound in Linux with Nvidia

Have you have ever struggled to install drivers for your hardware ?, do you ever find yourself piling in at the deep end, configuring kernels, compiling drivers splitting drivers, welding drivers whatever it takes assuming its a “just a Linux thing” ? . Well, I had been been struggling to install my Nvidia onboard soundcard in Linux Mint, in my case on a Gigabyte K8NXP-SLI motherboard. Rather than spend many hours of research and trial and error, start by checking the physical jumper settings on the motherboard itself. Mine had once had front panel audio connected but as I didn’t I needed to replace the jumpers that should have been in place if the wires to the front audio panel are not, phew. If you check your motherboard manual you should see a picture of the relevant jumper settings.
The worst thing about this is, when I was reminded (and i’ll post the link of the chap who reminded me) I remembered I had had this problem before, but thought this time it was too simple an answer , doh !

Linux tips and fixes (1) Hardware – setting up a wireless network Linux Mint and more.

Things can go wrong when fixing your own computer so I can not be held liable for any mass chaos and destruction in your life caused by you reading and acting upon this information. (I was going to write that in all caps. but thought that might be shouting it too much)

(1) Hardware – setting up a wireless network.

When you arrive at your shiny new Linux desktop, on the task panel you will see the “Network Manager” icon. Left click for options including connect to your wireless connection or right click for set up options, select your wireless network and enter the usual info, SSID, Wireless Key etc. Then submit/OK and your done !

Well, except when there is no “Network Manager” icon. Of course not having an Internet connection at that moment is not the time when you need to download drivers for your network, so here’s a super useful tool available in Linux Mint and probably lots more distributions.

Go to your programs list, select Administration, Select Windows Wireless Drivers, select the driver from your Windows\System32 folder or extract your Windows wireless drivers to a folder on your hard drive or USB Pendrive etc. and install from there.

Although its very rare to need to restart a Linux PC this is one of the times I did, having logged in and out a couple of times and failed miserably to detect a wireless network.

However on that subject I’ve had some strange occurrences with wireless networks recently. My old Windows installation can no longer obtain an IP address from the router. As it happens that’s not a problem because I very rarely login in to it, but before I stopped using Windows as my main Op. Sys. all my Linux boxes had done the same thing, they could connect to the wireless network but not obtain an IP address, go figure as they say.

Any Linux commands you need can be picked up HERE.

Linux Mint 5 Elyssa stable and secure (and its good fun too)

The latest version of Mint known as Elyssa is out and very nice it is too. I’ve been running it as my prefered O/S for a couple of weeks now and it is proving solid and reliable. It was very easy to set up my NVIDIA card and my Wireless device. There are thousands of Free (as in Freedom as well as in Beer) programs available to download with the built in package manager and I was informed of all the updates that were available for me including security, usability, new features etc.

All in all a very nice Linux distribution.

Linux Mint Logo - new version available from

Linux Mint Logo - new version available from