Nvidia Releases a Much Improved Video Driver for Linux

Nvidia display driver 256.35 for Linux, FreeBSD and Solaris

By on June 24th, 2010 09:08 GMT
After many months of hard work, Nvidia finally announced on June 22nd the final and stable version of the 256.x proprietary driver for Nvidia graphics cards. Nvidia 256.35 incorporates lots of fixes and improvements, over previous releases. Unofficial GLX support was also added for a few OpenGL extensions, as well as Thermal Settings reporting improvements, Compiz fixes, many VDPAU improvements, and many more. Without further introduction, let's take a look at some of the most important changes brought by the Nvidia 256.35 video driver:

· The precompiled kernel interfaces were removed from the 32-bit version of the driver (in the .run file) because they had been unmaintained for many years. Moreover, Nvidia has no plans to add the precompiled kernel interfaces in the .run files for the Linux platform, but users will be able to add their own precompiled kernel interfaces with the help of the "--add-this-kernel" option;
· The folder structure of the Linux driver was simplified (most of the files are in the top level folder);
· Unofficial support for the GLX protocol was added for the next OpenGL extensions: GL_ARB_sample_shading, GL_EXT_draw_buffers2, GL_NV_explicit_multisample, GL_ARB_blend_func_extended, GL_NV_transform_feedback, GL_ARB_draw_buffers_blend, GL_ARB_timer_query and GL_EXT_separate_shader_objects;
· nvidia-settings' Thermal Settings reporting feature was improved to support machines with more than one thermal sensor;
· Fixed PowerMizer performance issues;
· Fixed an nvidia-settings bug regarding thermal gauge widget rendering;
· Fixed 3D Vision Stereo issues;
· Fixed an issue with the clock frequencies of Performance Level, in nvidia-settings;
· Added Xinerama support in VDPAU;
· Fixed XvMC driver bug for machines with AGP graphics cards;
· Fixed some MPEG-2 decoding bug;
· New implemented APIs allow sharing of OpenGL and CUDA with VDPAU surfaces;
· The nvidia-installer, nvidia-setting and nvidia-xconfig tarballs are now compressed with bzip2;
· The "-pkg#" suffix was removed from the .run files.

For the complete and detailed changelog, please check the release announcement.

How to install the Nvidia 256.35 video drivers on your Linux box:

Log out of your current session and hit the CTRL+ALT+F1 key combination in order to enter a text-mode session. Log in as root (System Administrator), go to the folder where you've downloaded the Nvidia driver installer for your architecture (see below for links), and type the following corresponding command:

For 32-bit users:

sh NVIDIA-Linux-x86-256.35.run

For 64-bit users:

sh NVIDIA-Linux-x86_64-256.35.run

Then, follow the on-screen instructions to install the Nvidia video driver. Please note that the Linux kernel headers and a GCC compiler will be required to complete the installation!

Download the Nvidia Linux display driver 256.35 for the x86 architecture right now from Softpedia.

Download the Nvidia Linux display driver 256.35 for the AMD64/EM64T architectures right now from Softpedia.

Download the Nvidia FreeBSD display driver 256.35 for the x86/x64 architectures right now from Softpedia.

Download the Nvidia Solaris display driver 256.35 for the x86/x64 architectures right now from Softpedia.

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