How to install nvidia GPU drivers in elementary OS

nvidia elementary os

Ubuntu and its derivatives like elementary OS, Linux Mint, etc. ship with Nouveau default video driver for use with the nvidia GPUs. This does a great job and most of the users should be happy with it. They are easy to update and more tested in Ubuntu. Therefore it contains the least number of bugs and so runs without much hazzles. The only drawback is they are not up-to-date when compared with the official version released by nvidia. But the official ones comes with a bigger set of problems. It is has more issues than the ones available in the Ubuntu’s PPA.

nvidia elementary os

Keeping all these in mind, I recommend to install nvidia drivers from PPA repository. This is very stable because it is tested by community. It also updates automatically.

Install nvidia drivers in elementary OS Loki

Ubuntu and Linux Mint users can skip STEP 1 & 2.

STEP 1: Starting from Loki, elementary OS doesn’t support PPA. So let’s first enable it.  Launch ‘Terminal’ and run the following commands one at a time:

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade

STEP 2: This command will enable PPA and you can use apt-get again in elementary OS.

sudo apt install software-properties-common

STEP 3: Let’s install video graphic sources.

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:graphics-drivers/ppa

STEP 4: Update again.

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade

STEP 5: Finally you need to know which nvidia drivers should you install. You can check the latest PPA graphic builds here. Current official (Feb 2017) release is nvidia-370 (370.28). GeForce 8 and 9 series GPUs users need to use ‘nvidia-340’ (340.98) and GeForce 6 and 7 series GPUs users should be using ‘nvidia-304’ (304.132) in the command below. Use 3 digit number accordingly.

sudo apt-get install nvidia-xxx

If you are still on nvidia optimus, use the bumblebee instead of above command:

sudo apt-get install bumblebee linux-headers-generic

Good luck!

Hi there! I'm Kiran Kumar, founder of FOSSLinux.com. I'm an avid Linux lover, and enjoys hands-on with new promising distros. Currently, I'm using Linux Mint as a daily driver and run several other distros such as Fedora, Solus, Ubuntu, Debian, and some new ones on my test PC and virtual machines. I have a day job as an Engineer, and this website is one of my favorite past time activities especially during Winter ;). When I'm not writing for FOSSLinux, I'm seen biking and hiking on scenic trails. Hope you enjoy using this website as much as I do writing for it. Feedback from readers is something that inspires me to do more, and spread my love for Linux. If you find time, drop me an email or feedback from 'Contact' page. Or simply leave a comment below if you found this article useful. Have a good day!

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2 Comments on "How to install nvidia GPU drivers in elementary OS"

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Joe Griffin
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Thanks so much! This guide worked first time for me and I just started learning Bash about a week ago. 🙂

deosinggih
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thank you very much sir..

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