May 25, 2010
I have a PCI graphics card, Nvidia Geforce FX 5500, but can't get it to work. I have 10.04 installed on a Dell Dimension 3000, P4, 1Gb RAM, integrated graphics. I installed 10.04 without the card in the machine, then shut down and plugged the card in and booted it up again (BIOS setting is 'onboard' for integrated graphics, 8Mb; only other option is 'auto'). Checking the hardware drivers I can see the recommended Nvidia drivers (v173, not yet activated) and lspci gives me the integrated as well as the Nvidia listing:
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01:02.0 VGA compatible controller: Nvidia Corporation NV34 [GeForce FX 5500] (rev a1)
00:02.0 VGA compatible controller: Intel Corporation 8286G Integrated Graphics Controller (rev 02)
So far so good, but that's where it ends. Changing the BIOS setting to 'auto' turns the screen off on reboot, both for the monitor connected to the VGA port of the Nvidia card and for the monitor connected to the VGA port of the motherboard. I have to shutdown, take the card out and set the BIOS back to 'onboard' to be able to boot again (and shutdown, plug the card back in and boot up again to get back to where I was).
Activating the recommended hardware driver and rebooting (still with BIOS set to onboard) gives a blank screen (screen is still on and there may have been a flash of the purple screen with the ubuntu logo); nothing else happens no matter how long I wait. Rebooting doesn't help, it turns off the screen; same result for booting in recovery mode. I can get to the GRUB bootloader and when I replace 'quiet splash' with 'nomodeset' I manage to boot again with the monitor connected to the VGA port of the motherboard, but am not anywhere closer to getting my monitor working on the Nvidea card.