NVIDIA GeForce 8400M GS - Blank screen or no GUI - trying to migrate from Ubuntu

  • killian
Posted: Mon, 11/03/2008 - 18:04
Hi there, Its my first post and I apologise for starting a new topic. I have tried several of the things in other posts and no luck so far...... After a completely fresh install it(the thing that won't start xwindows or whatever) tells me that I have a "fatal error - no device" and throws me into the command line thingy. I installed the nvidia glx drivers from the dvd (and changing the xorg.conf file to "nvidia" under the "Device" heading ) and I have tried changing the "Device" in xorg.conf to "vesa" too as that is supposed to work in a pinch. I seem to get a slightly different type of blank screen with these two drivers. I realise this is not a very accurate description of the problem. I have no idea how to save the error messages or get a copy of xorg.conf to show you the details. Perhaps a good place to start would be to tell me how to do this (it would require either mounting an nts volume or a usb disk i imagine - something i don't know how to do either) Usually I would just go back to what I was using previously but a custom built audio distribution really appeals to me as does, oddly enough, learning how to fix the issue. Its interesting though that there was a GUI (albeit basic) when I installed the OS (the recent 64 studio one 2.1 - AMD64) Its a dell vostro if that helps ! Thanks for any help.

No, it won't work better.

  • Pablo
  • 07/11/07
  • Sun, 11/09/2008 - 21:10
No, it won't work better. Similarly, you'd need to install the driver from the CLI. You can always have a triple boot, with ubuntu, 64studio and windows, so you don't need to uninstall ubuntu if you decide to give 64studio another try. Just a thought. You're welcome Pablo

thanks a lot for the help.

  • killian
  • 11/03/08
  • Sun, 11/09/2008 - 20:05
thanks a lot for the help. couldn't get it going. i'm going to get my hands on some linux books to try and get some basics. for now i'll wait until the next release which i believe will have the drivers i need. back to ubuntu for now. i just don't have enough free time to have a music system which isn't working. i wonder if the i386 installer would work better as i have been using amd64 ...... thanks again, killian

Hi again Killian

  • Pablo
  • 07/11/07
  • Tue, 11/04/2008 - 10:45
Hi Killian, With the usb plugged, type fdisk -l It will list your drives and partitions. Have you a line which seems to be the usb key?? Yes, it could be /dev/sdb1 If so, with that mount command, you have already mounted at /mnt (most likely, as you are not prompetd with any error message, as GNU usually says nothing if you do things right) Show the contents of /etc/mtab again: cat /etc/mtab And you should see the new line. And: ls /mnt And the driver should be there. Here it's different than Windows. If you have mounted at /mnt think of /mnt as your usb key, in place of /media/usbdisk. That was just a possiblity. Strange that you can't see the automagically asigned mount point in /etc/mtab, but you can forget it if you have mounted it manually Don't hesitate to ask. You are near the end of the tunnel Pablo

usb flash drive not mounting

  • killian
  • 11/03/08
  • Mon, 11/03/2008 - 23:39
i got the driver onto a usb disk formatted as fat 32 and followed these steps: cat /etc/mtab mount -t vfat /dev/sdb1 /mnt nothing seemed to happen after this except i got a new prompt so i tried ls /media/usbdisk and a few variations such as ls /media/key (key being the name of the disk in windows) ls /media/sdb1 still not mounting as far as i can tell........ must get a book on debian. any recommendations for a beginner ? thanks for the help so far.

Hi

  • Pablo
  • 07/11/07
  • Mon, 11/03/2008 - 21:26
Hi Killian, I've got the almost the same video card as you, a GeForce 8400 GS (without the M). The fact is that I have it working with the propietary driver. But before that, you need some command line basics. If you have a USB storage device, it'll mount at /media/something when you plug it. To see where it's mounted wait a few seconds and type cat /etc/mtab Let's suppose you see in the last line something like: /dev/sdxx /media/usbdisk ...... That means you have the device mounted at /media/usbdisk which is a directory in the file system. For example, to report your xorg.conf file you can do from the command line interface: cat /etc/X11/xorg.conf > /media/usbdisk/myxorg.conf.txt This will create a text file in the usb storage device you can open with a simple text editor like notepad in Windows and paste here. You can download the Linux driver from the nvidia site and copy to the usb storage device, then in the 64studio CLI do: ls /media/usbdisk and you should see the NVIDIA-Linux-......run file Now, copy the file to your system, for example: cp /media/usbdisk/NVIDIA-......run /home/killian/NVIDIA-driver.run change directory to wherever you have put it: cd /home/killian run sh NVIDIA-driver.run and follow instructions Report back your xorg.conf file if things are not so fine. Also, disabling apic and lapic could help, to do this edit your /boot/grub/menu.lst file by typing: nano /boot/grub/menu.lst And look for the lines: title 64 Studio, kernel 2.6.21-1-multimedia-486 (on /dev/sda1) root (hd0,0) kernel /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.21-1-multimedia-486 root=/dev/sda1 ro vga=791 splash=silent noapic nolapic initrd /boot/initrd.img-2.6.21-1-multimedia-486 savedefault boot In my case, I have the 32 bit version, and it boots with the options: ro vga=791 splash=silent noapic nolapic Add noapic and nolapic to your booting options and reboot We'll see Cheers Pablo EDIT: To make command line easy, there is the TAB key which autocompletes. For example, I want to edit a file and I do: nano /e(TAB) (autocompletes to nano /etc/) nano /etc/z(TAB) (it doesnt autocomplete, something is wrong), what's up? ls /etc (list of the directories and files on /etc/. Oh, true there is no file beginning with z) nano /e(TAB) nano /etc/X(TAB) nano /etc/X11/x(TAB) (autocompletes to nano /etc/X11/xorg.conf). Also, another valuable resource is the up arrow, which repeats the last commands. Then there is "select and drop". Select with the left button and drop with the middle one .

checksum ok.

  • killian
  • 11/03/08
  • Mon, 11/03/2008 - 20:44
I did an md5sum check in windows before I burned the disc. The card is an NVIDIA Geforce 8400M GS (I put it in the subject line, sorry). I am booting between windows and 64studio alternately at present. Its sort of why I can't accurately describe the errors as I have to boot back to go online. Having two computers would be handy. I will try downloading the driver from their website. Not sure how to mount the drive from the single user console though and what steps then to install the driver. Please could you point me in the right direction for the post that contains that information ? Its pretty obvious I am new at this stuff. I spent the first hour not able to edit the /etc/X11/xorg.conf file as I was spelling X11 in lower case ! We live and learn. Scribbling stuff of the back on an envelope in a hurry caused me frustration. I find it hard reading multiple solutions from different threads though. There's always more than one way to skin a cat... The CPU is a T7250 Core 2 Duo. 2GB of 'Dell' RAM Ubuntu Studio was a cakewalk. I've installed it several times with no problems. Just thought it a bit funny that I had a GUI for the installation and then none afterwards. Could it be refresh rates or some other synchronisation problem ? Thanks again.

No Problem!

  • Quentin Harley
  • 05/24/07
  • Mon, 11/03/2008 - 20:16
Just stick the thingemebob into the wigly and then press the whashamecalit ;-) Seriously though... It looks like a device is not available to the system at all, causing your problem. Where the problem occurs might be important, because them we have a clue of which device is causing trouble. Some GPUs don't run even using the supposedly bulletproof vesa drivers. These cards also do not run using the nvidia drivers off the CD, you'll have to get the drivers fron the nvidia site. There are a couple of threads on here already dealing with that issue... Also - have you checked the checksum of the installer disk ISO before you burnt it? If you can give us some info about the innards of your PC it might help - things like graphics adaptor model number (GeForce 7900 GT for instance), CPU, RAM, etc Cheers, Quentin