Ubuntu – Am I using the Nouveau driver or the proprietary NVIDIA driver


For a long time, I have used the NVIDIA proprietary driver. In Additional Drivers the NVIDIA driver was activated. However, I just "Removed" that driver because I would like to use the Nouveau driver for other reasons. Yet, I have reason to believe I am still using the NVIDIA driver as the output of modprobe -l is as follows:

$  modprobe -l | grep 'nvidia'

How do I really determine what driver I am using, and how to I enable Nouveau?

Best Answer

nvidiafb is a framebuffer driver inside the Linux Kernel. Is not the proprietary module from nvidia. (nvidia.ko).

If you want to see the short description of the module, issue the following command in terminal

modinfo nvidiafb | grep description

If you want to read more a about framebuffer , read the FrambeBuffer on Ubuntu Wiki.

You can see if some nvidia package is installed by applying the following command

dpkg -l | grep -i nvidia

If you want to search if the nouveau module is loaded you can apply

lsmod | grep nouveau

If nvidia restricted module was loaded , then the nouveau module Cannot be loaded too (conflict each other).

Nvidia's (restricted) module name is nvidia . Not nvidiafb or something similar.

Also you can search from Additional Drivers page . In example below , no proprietary drivers are in use

enter image description here

And another command that can show you, which driver is in use:

lspci -nnk | grep -iA2 vga 

There you will see a line like

kernel driver in use: *****

If it's nvidia , then you have nvidia driver installed and in use. If it's nouveau, then you don't.

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