Linux 2.6.9 and NVIDIA

October 24th, 2004 by Crusader

Speaking of kernels and video cards: version 2.6.9 of the Linux kernel has been released; the gargantuan changelog can be found here.

A caveat noteworthy for gamers: a memory management patch to the kernel introduced in 2.6.9 breaks the NVIDIA kernel driver for their graphics cards. NVIDIA hasn’t released a patch yet, but ngc891 has released one of his own on his weblog. Gentoo’s nvidia-kernel packages already have this patch applied.

ngc891’s unofficial NVIDIA 1.0-6111-jp1 Driver Patch: [ ]

Linux 2.6.9 Download: [ ]

Edit – Monday Oct 25 00:30:50 2004 – floam pointed out that Con Kolivas has released a patch to fix the kswapd issues users have been seeing with 2.6.9:

+vm-pages_scanned-active_list.patchA nasty bug that caused kswapd to get stuck consuming heaps of cpu whichwas in mainline 2.6.9 was tracked down by some of my users (thanks!) andfixed by Nick Piggin (thanks!).

ck2 2.6.9 kswapd Patch Download: [ ]

7 Responses to “Linux 2.6.9 and NVIDIA”

  1. Dweebs Says:

    Thats weird. I primarily use gentoo-dev-sources but I also have the vanilla sources installed and running and I haven’t had any problems with nvidia drivers. Anyone here have the problems the are talking about?

    [q]ls /usr/src
    linux linux-2.6.9 linux-2.6.9-gentoo


  2. Anonymous Says:

    hmmm, is there another 2.6.9 that i don’t know about ?, unless the patch is part of an option i did not enable in the kernel ?.

  3. MNKyDeth Says:

    I always download my kernels from and this problem is very real. I have tried the patched nvidia drivers and they work.
    I also know that using the ck1 patch for the kernel will allow you to install the regular unpatched nvidia drivers.

  4. Dweebs Says:

    Looks like the original post was edited to say that Gentoo’s nvidia-kernel packages already have this patch applied. So, that explains why this has not been an issue for me at least.

  5. ashridah Says:

    The scheduler in 2.6.9 sucks balls anyway, because of a mistake linus made when applying a patch or something. There are fixes around, naturally.

    UT, UT2xxx, and to a lesser extent doom3, all run like crap on linux 2.6.9 here, with kswapd taking up huge chunks of cpu but not actually moving any swap around.

    it’s particularly noticable in UT, where the game has a fantastic framerate, but only actually renders anything for about half a second, every second. :)

  6. feendster Says:

    I was having a devil of a time w/ Nvidia’s drivers and 2.6.9. I said hell w/ it and went back to

  7. Anonymous Says:

    … I’m running it (nvidia-kernel-1.0.6111-r2) and I’m having the kswapd issue.

    I’ll retry after I’m done building gentoo-dev-sources-2.6.9-r1..

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