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NVIDIA Proprietary Driver: Troubleshooting

This page describes issues and workarounds relating to the NVIDIA proprietary display driver.

Secure Boot

Although Secure Boot is now supported by Debian, the NVIDIA driver requires DKMS, which requires additional setup to be used with Secure Boot.

If you don't sign the generated modules, you will see the following in boot logs:

[FAILED] Failed to start Load Kernel Modules
See 'systemctl status systemd-modules-load.service' for details

systemd-modules-load logs will clearly show errors related to the nvidia module.
Another symptom of Nvidia module not loaded is nvidia-settings not starting:

$ nvidia-settings 
ERROR: NVIDIA driver is not loaded

ERROR: Unable to load info from any available system

To sign Nvidia modules and make them work with Secure Boot, follow those instructions.
An easier alternative is to disable Secure Boot in your system's BIOS.

Black screen after resume from suspend

I assume you have already a file named like 80-nvidia.conf placed in /etc/X11/xorg.conf.d/ to edit and the package nvidia-settings installed. First you can check that correct monitor frequencies are detected: run nvidia-settings program choose the "X Server Display Configuration" tab then click the "Save To X Configuration File" button then click "Show previw..." in the view showed look for these two lines:

placed in the section "Monitor" DON'T USE THESE VALUES you must edit and set the horizontal and vertical frequencies reading/googling your monitor name and model specification datasheet! If the values are wrong set the right value in 80-nvidia.conf then you must also add this line:

in the section "Device" then reboot in order the changes take effect. If these changes still don't work try enforce monitor detection adding these lines to the "Device" section:

the accepted value for ConnectedMonitor are CRT, DFP and TV anything attached to a 15 pin VGA connector is regarded by the driver as a CRT. "DFP" should only be used to refer to digital flat panels connected via a DVI port, TV stands for television. Don't forget to reboot in order the changes takes effect. For further information you can refer to this link. An exemple 80-nvidia.conf could be:

Screen tearing with KDE desktop

To avoid screen tearing when using the KDE desktop you need to enable triple buffering. You need to add this line:

to the section "Device" of your NVIDIA configuration file placed into /etc/X11/xorg.conf.d/ directory in order to enable triple buffering for the driver then run this command: sudo nano /etc/profile.d/ then copy/paste the following text:

save and exit the editor and reboot the system to the changes take effect, doing so you'll enable triple buffering for all KDE users of your system. You can play this video to check if the problem has gone.


On some older machines, to compensate for a broken BIOS and/or older graphics cards, the following can improve use of an NVidia card significantly:

If multiple menus show up:

# dconf reset -f /org/gnome/gnome-panel/layout

See Also