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Bumblebee for NVIDIA Optimus


by justin time | Dec 7, 2017 | Graphics,
Hardware | 0 comments

Introduction Nesta Página...


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Nvidia Optimus are probably the best video cards
currently supported by Linux. They provide both an 1 Introduction
excellent graphical acceleration and an extreme power 2 Do I have an
saving, whichever is needed. Both features are provided Optimus card?
by Bumblebee. 3 Two BIOS

Some computer may need BIOS adjustments before types

Bumblebee installation. See Two BIOS types section. 4 Installation

4.1 Disable
Bumblebee installation and removal are simple and
and remove
straightforward processes. See Installation e Remove
Nouveau 2
Bumblebee sections.
4.2 Install
The text speaks about a fresh Bumblebee installation. It Antergos
is also a repairing tool. If Bumblebee is already installed
without
but you're unsure about its state, simply install
Nvidia

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Bumblebee again. It does not hurt a system in any way.


drivers
Bumblebee's power saving feature was missing in the 4.3 Disable
mid of 2015. See Missing power o� section. Optimus, 2nd
type BIOS
The guide may be used to install Bumblebee in other
only
distributions, which use unmodi�ed Arch Linux
repositories. In Arch Linux itself. In Revenge OS with Zen 4.4 Enable

Installer. In Bluestar Linux, downloads at SourceForge. In [multilib]


Architect Linux (discontinued, but still available). In Arch repo
Anywhere or Feliz. 4.5 Fully
upgrade the
The 1st editionof the article, not available anymore in the 
system
Wiki, was visited 12000+ vezes.
4.6 Install 
Bumblebee
Do I have an Optimus card? 4.7 Add

yourself to 
First things �rst. An excerpt from Bumblebee Project Wiki
bumblebee
Troubleshooting section: 
group
"Only laptops have these kind of nVidia Optimus card, so 4.8 Enable
this project won't apply to desktops (for now). Cards from bumblebeed
the 4xxM and newer series are all Optimus-enabled. o M
service
stands for "Mobile". But having a 4xxM card isn't enough to
4.9 Install
be sure that you're having an Optimus laptop. There must
power saving
also be an integrated video controller in your processor. To
patch
check that, run this command in a terminal:
4.10 Reboot
the system
1. lspci -vnn | grep '\''[030[02]\]'
4.11 Enable
Optimus, 2nd
If it outputs two lines, then you're likely having an Optimus type BIOS
laptop. Else..." only

...this article is of no help for your card. 5 Missing power

On NVIDIA Optimus two output lines look like:


o� 2
5.1 Turning
O� Nvidia
1. 00:02.0 VGA compatible controller
Manually
[0300]: Intel Corporation Haswell-ULT
Integrated Graphics Controller 5.2 Turning
[8086:0a16] (rev 09) (prog-if 00 [VGA

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controller])
O� Nvidia
Automatically
e
6 Fine tuning
NVIDIA Optimus
1. 01:00.0 3D controller [0302]: NVIDIA settings
Corporation GK107M [GeForce GT 750M]
[10de:0fe4] (rev ff) (prog-if ff) 7 Adjust menu
to run NVIDIA
settings
The �rst line starts with 00:02.0. It corresponds to Intel
8 Warning
GPU.
9 Known Issues

The second line starts with 01:00.0. It corresponds to 9.1 GeForce
Nvidia GPU. 
GTX 960M

Your Intel and Nvidia make and model will obviously be 10 Cards used

di�erent from this example. 11 Uninstall
Bumblebee 
Take note of your nVidia model because the driver
version you install will depend on it (see the section, Do I 
Have Legacy or Current Hardware?).

Two BIOS types


For the purpose of this guide let's distinguish two BIOS types:

1. BIOS doesn't control video card and doesn't mention it


2. BIOS tries to control integrated and/or discrete video cards

1st type BIOS is the most Bumblebee-friendly. It doesn't require to enter BIOS
Setup utility, to con�gure or change anything in BIOS. Just boot the computer
normally and, if possible, make sure it runs on xf86-video-intel video driver. It
should be so by default. Nothing else is required.

2nd type BIOS is less Bumblebee-friendly. It requires to enter BIOS Setup utility 2
and make some adjustments within it. Before and after Bumblebee installation.
All BIOS changes in the guide refer only to the 2nd BIOS type. Make sure the
computer runs on xf86-video-intel.

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Brie�y. Bumblebee installation on:

1. 1st type BIOS doesn't require any change in BIOS setup


2. 2nd type BIOS may require some changes in BIOS setup before and after Bmb
installation

Installation
Disable and remove Nouveau

Edit 2017-07-14: Intel + Nouveau combination is deprecated. It is not supported by


Bumblebee anymore. Intel + Nouveau support can be dropped from Bumblebee at 
any time. Bumblebee supports Intel + Nvidia combination only.

Nouveau video driver causes many troubles on NVIDIA Optimus cards.
Unbootable system, crashes during boot, a system that boots into unresponsive 
black screen with a white text cursor blinking in the top left corner, Cnchi and

LiveDE freezes are only few of Nouveau e�ects.

If you don't experience any of these issues, you may safely skip this section.
Otherwise, keep reading on.

Three steps are needed to remove Nouveau.

1. Disable it during a boot from LiveMedia, to be able to start LiveDE with Cnchi
and complete the installation

2. Disable it on the �rst boot of the installed system, to be able to reach the
graphical DE

3. Physical Nuoveau package uninstallation on the �rst boot; the system will use
Intel GPU on subsequent boots until Bumblebee installation

Steps in details.

1. Use the default LiveMedia boot menu option. Edit the boot line and add to it 2
the following parameter:

1. modprobe.blacklist=nouveau

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Continue to boot normally.

2. Disable Nouveau on the �rst boot of the installed system, exactly the same
way as in previous step.

3. Once you've reached the graphical DE, open the terminal and run the
following command, to remove Nouveau completely:

1. sudo pacman -Rc xf86-video-nouveau

It is a common mistake to use nouveau.modeset=0 parameter in attempt to 


exclude Nouveau. The parameter only shifts the responsibility for setting up the

graphical mode from Xorg to the kernel. It doesn't prevent nouveau module
from being loaded and used. Do not use this parameter.


Install Antergos without Nvidia drivers

Doing a fresh Antergos installation, make sure to not install proprietary Nvidia
drivers. The option installs drivers for single-GPU, non-hybrid video cards, with
NVIDIA GPU only. It does not install drivers for double-GPU, hybrid video cards
with NVIDIA and Intel GPUs.

Leave installer's Graphic drivers (Proprietary) switch in the default OFF


position. Simply don't touch it:

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Failing to do so will result in unbootable NVIDIA Optimus system.

With Graphic drivers (Proprietary) switched OFF, Antergos will install Intel and
Nouveau graphic drivers.

By default, Nvidia GPU is never active, or switched on, in Optimus computers


with the 1st type BIOS. Nvidia GPU remains unused and switched o� until it is
activated by proprietary Nvidia or by free Nouveau drivers.

Bumblebee switches Nvidia GPU ON e OFF automatically, whichever is needed.


Disable Optimus, 2nd type BIOS only 

The owners of the 1st type BIOS may safely skip this section. 

After the installation has completed reboot your system, and enter the BIOS 
con�guration utility. Most Nvidia Optimus cards run alongside Intel integrated
graphics. Find your display settings, and select "Intel Integrated", or something
similar - just make sure that Optimus and Discrete are not enabled. Also, make
sure that the setting below it, "Detection by OS" setting is disabled. After this
step has completed, you may reboot, and enter your new install of Antergos.

Enable [multilib] repo

The repo is already enabled by default in recent Antergos releases. If you install
on native Arch Linux, Architect, Bridge, other systems which use unmodi�ed
Arch repos, then edit the /etc/pacman.conf �le and uncomment the repo.

Fully upgrade the system

1. yaourt -Syyua 2

Install Bumblebee

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On modern hardware, with current drivers:

1. sudo pacman -S bumblebee mesa xf86-video-intel nvidia


lib32-nvidia-utils lib32-virtualgl nvidia-settings bbswitch

On older hardware, with 340.xx legacy drivers:

1. sudo pacman -S bumblebee mesa xf86-video-intel nvidia-340xx


nvidia-340xx-utils lib32-nvidia-340xx-utils lib32-virtualgl
bbswitch


On even older hardware, with 304.xx legacy drivers:

1. sudo pacman -S bumblebee mesa xf86-video-intel nvidia-304xx 


nvidia-304xx-utils lib32-nvidia-304xx-utils lib32-virtualgl
bbswitch 


Add yourself to bumblebee group

Any user that is supposed to use Bumblebee must be added to this group. The
user must also be a member of the video group - it is usually so by default, but
not always.

1. sudo gpasswd -a $USER bumblebee

1. sudo gpasswd -a $USER video

Enable bumblebeed service

Notice the �nal d (from daemon) letter in the service's name. The step may be
skipped if the next step will be executed. 2
1. sudo systemctl enable bumblebeed.service

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Install power saving patch

Only if needed. The patch is described in details below.

The package is found at:

bumblebee-3.2.1-11-x86_64.pkg.tar.xz

1. sudo pacman -U /path/to/package/bumblebee-3.2.1-11-


x86_64.pkg.tar.xz

With the package installed, pacman will issue the warning on subsequent

upgrades. It may be safely ignored:


warning: bumblebee: local (3.2.1-11) is newer than community (3.2.1-10)


Reboot the system 

1. sudo shutdown -r now

Enable Optimus, 2nd type BIOS only

The owners of the 1st type BIOS may safely skip this section.

Start up your computer, and once again, enter your BIOS utility con�guration.
Find the Display con�guration and change it from "integrated graphics" to
"Optimus". Leave the "Detected by OS" in the "Disabled" position.

Missing power o�
Edit 2016.07: Somewhere in 2016.06 the issue has been solved upstream. If you
install after this date, most probably the problem will not be present. Check it with
the the test described here. There's no need to install the patch.
2
Most time NVIDIA Optimus cards run on Intel GPU. It is done for power saving.
Nvidia GPU is used only when explicitly instructed to do so - by placing the
optirun command in front of the program's name. When optirun exits it should

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immediately switch Nvidia GPU o� and turn back to Intel GPU. It does not
happen recently. Nvidia is not switched o�. The system continues to run on
Nvidia.

There's no power saving, computer becomes overheated, cooling fans are


constantly spinning at max speed. Technically speaking, the issue is caused by
the fact that nvidia_drm, nvidia_modeset e nvidia modules are not unloaded
upon optirun termination.

When the system runs on Intel GPU, three modules are not used and are not
loaded. All are loaded only when optirun starts running. And should be
unloaded on optirun termination. Which doesn't happen.

Check if your system is a�ected by the issue. After startup open a terminal and
run three commands, one after another: 


1. optirun --status
2. Bumblebee status: Ready (3.2.1). X inactive. Discrete 
video card is off.
3. optirun pwd 
4. /home/just
5. optirun --status
6. Bumblebee status: Ready (3.2.1). X inactive. Discrete
video card is off.

If after the last (third) command the Discrete video card is o�, like in the
example above, then the system is not a�ected by the issue. You may skip this
section.

If after the last (third) command the Discrete video card is on, then the system
is a�ected by the issue. You may wish to solve it, either manually or
automatically. Below is described how to do it.

Turning O� Nvidia Manually

First, let's try to shutdown Nvidia by hand. To be sure that we're facing with the
issue described here; three modules must be listed exactly in the same order
2
like in this example:

1. sudo rmmod nvidia_drm nvidia_modeset nvidia


2. sudo tee <<<OFF /proc/acpi/bbswitch

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The �rst command forces three modules to be unloaded. The second one
switches Nvidia GPU o�. Check Nvidia status again:

1. optirun --status
2. Bumblebee status: Ready (3.2.1). X inactive. Discrete
video card is off.

Let's run a bit more complicated test. It will switch Nvidia on and then back o�,
in one command:

1. optirun pwd && sleep 1 && sudo rmmod nvidia_drm 


nvidia_modeset nvidia && sudo tee <<<OFF /proc/acpi
/bbswitch


This method may be used to switch Nvidia o� by hand.

Turning O� Nvidia Automatically 

The method to solve the issue automatically was discussed in Arch Linux
bugtracker here. It applies the same two commands seen in previous section.

The advantage of the method is that there's no need to enter any command by
hand in terminal, with elevated privileges. Optirun turns to work normally, as
usual, automatically switching Nvidia ON and OFF when it starts and exits.

The disadvantage is that you'll need to install a "homemade" package, unknown


to regular Arch repos.

The patch for �xing missing power saving can be found at:

bumblebee-3.2.1-11-x86_64.pkg.tar.xz

Download the �le and install it normally with pacman, like any other package:

1. sudo pacman -U /path/to/package/bumblebee-3.2.1-11- 2


x86_64.pkg.tar.xz

The package has no dependencies. During installation it will issue three


informational messages. They may be safely ignored.

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With the package installed, pacman and pamac will issue the warning on
subsequent system's upgrades. It may be safely ignored as well:

warning: bumblebee: local (3.2.1-11) is newer than community (3.2.1-10)

Important. Once the package is installed, computer must be rebooted. A simple


logout-login is not enough.

Fine tuning NVIDIA Optimus settings



It is possible to �ne-tune NVIDIA settings, by running the nvidia-settings utility
on NVIDIA GPU

1. optirun -b none nvidia-settings -c :8



The command is the only correct way to execute nvidia-settings on Optimus 
computers.

Any attempt to run nvidia-settings utility with a di�erent syntax will fail. 2

Adjust menu to run NVIDIA settings


Once Bumblebee and proprietary NVIDIA drivers are installed, the menu entry to

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launch nvidia-settings utility is automatically created. It is called NVIDIA X


Server Settings in the menu.

This menu entry is wrong for NVIDIA Optimus.

The menu is not con�gured correctly right after the installation. It executes the
simple nvidia-settings command.

If you select NVIDIA X Server Settings menu entry with the default content
(command), you will be adviced to run nvidia-xcon�g utility, to �x the problem.
Never do that. The problem does not exist. See the Warning section below for
more info.

If you want to run NVIDIA X Server Settings from menu, you have to edit the
menu entry by hand, and replace the default incorrect command with the 
correct one.

From:

1. /usr/bin/nvidia-settings 

To:

1. optirun -b none nvidia-settings -c :8

Warning
There's nvidia-xcon�g utility, installed with Bumblebee among NVIDIA tools.
Never run it on Optimus computers. It was designed for and works correctly on
single-GPU NVIDIA cards only. It doesn't detect hybrid NVIDIA Optimus cards. It's
a perfect Bumblebee killer. If executed, it immediately breaks Bumblebee
con�guration.

Known Issues 2
GeForce GTX 960M

When rebooting your computer might not start again. To solve that issue add

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acpi_osi="!Windows 2015" as a kernel parameter. See issue #764(comentário) on


github.

To make that change permanent in grub add in /etc/default/grub

1. GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX_DEFAULT="acpi_osi=\"!Windows 2015\""

and create grub con�g after with the command

1. sudo grub-mkconfig -o /boot/grub/grub.cfg



Cards used

The article was written and is being continuosly tested on three Nvidia Optimus

video cards:

GeForce GT 555M
GeForce GT 650M
GeForce GT 750M

It was not tested on recent Optimus cards, like GeForce GTX 10-Series
Notebooks. There are reports about successful Bumblebee installation on
modern GeForce Optimus, though they still may present some problems which
are not covered here.

The article was written and tested on PC laptops only. It was never tested on
Mac hardware. It may or may not work on Mac computers.

The guide was successfully applied also on the following cards.

NVS 4200M
GeForce GT 640M 2
GeForce 820M
GeForce GTX 850M
GeForce GTX 860M
GeForce 920M

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GeForce 940M
GeForce 940MX
GeForce GTX 960M
GeForce GTX 970M

Uninstall Bumblebee
Bumblebee and proprietary Nvidia driver may be removed from Arch and
Antergos.

1. Stop running bumblebee service: 

1. sudo systemctl stop bumblebeed 


2. Disable bumblebee service from being started on subsequent boot ups:

1. sudo systemctl disable bumblebeed


3. Delete all users from bumblebee group. If only the current user was added to
it, he may be removed with:

1. sudo gpasswd --delete $USER bumblebee

4. When all users have been removed from bumblebee group, the group may be
deleted:

1. sudo groupdel bumblebee

5. Remove all packages that were installed for Bumblebee and Nvidia, and their
dependencies:
2
1. sudo pacman -Rcnsu bumblebee nvidia lib32-nvidia-utils
lib32-virtualgl nvidia-settings bbswitch --noconfirm

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6. (Optional) Re-install xf86-video-intel driver without unneeded Bumblebee


dependencies:

1. sudo pacman -Syu xf86-video-intel --noconfirm

7. (Optional) Regenerate initramfs:

1. sudo mkinitcpio --preset linux

8. Shutdown the system: 


1. sudo shutdown -h now

9. Done 

Regards

March 2016

Contributors:

Fadi
Justin R Harsh Dustin
time Mirgleich
Lathwal Falgout
Christophe222
2
(Visitado 69,746 vezes, 148 visitas hoje)

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