Linux - Sigh

So I finally took the dive into Linux installing Mint 17.2 everything seemed to be working really well but I noticed quite a bit of screen tearing. After looking into it it seems that my only Linux issue (a big one for me) is that I am using a MSI GT70 laptop with and Intel & NVIDIA card.

If i set everything to use Intel I can only use my Laptop screen + a the VGA connection to a monitor as the HDMI & Mini DisplayPort are hooked up to the NVIDIA card.

Is there anyway around this? Or am I better off building a PC just from scratch for Linux.


more information please

Are you using the open-source driver for the Nvidia card or the proprietary one?

Tried both drivers. The Nouveau and the proprietary one.

Just a little more about my setup.

The laptop is driving 2 extra screens via HDMI and Mini DisplayPort.

I thought that maybe I'd be able to pass through the NVIDIA card, but it seems that it would make the other screens not work.
use this ppa for the nvidia drivers and see if that fixes it

I don't think there's anything you can do to load both modules. Once nvidia is loaded, it keeps nouveau from being loaded afterwards. And I think it messes things up to do the other way around. You could try it though, I think that you'd have to change some /etc configs to unblacklist nouveau.

Are you post stalking me?

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Didn't think I'd get caught. Lol.

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There is some support for these configurations through Optimus but even if you have that working properly I don't think it will solve your output problem assuming some of the outputs will only function from the nvidia card - but if you are at a desk and plugged in why not just run of nvidia and only switch to Intel when you are mobile?

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The big issue for me when just using the NVIDIA driver was the screen tearing. Even when just moving desktop windows.

Seems to be an X issue, that the cannot seem to fix.

Do you get the screen tearing if you only use the outputs that only run from the Nvidia card? That link suggested it was caused by the Nvidia GPU feeding the Intel card to then display on the screen.

I know X is rather old and limited in many ways. You could try running another distro especially something that has Wayland support (Fedora 22?) but I expect you will run into other issues. My only other suggestion (and don't shoot me here) is to run your laptop with Windows as the base OS and then Linux through Virtual Box or Vmware Player 12.

At least that way you could keep a stripped down Windows install for any games/3d software you use and then perform your other work in the VM. VMware Player 12 has better support for OpenGL than Virtual Box but is missing some useful features Virtual Box has unless you pay to upgrade to the full VMware Workstation.

Unfortunately, there's nothing you can do about it really.
Screen tearing is caused by Xorg's design being an outdated clusterf*ck, no longer suitable for modern hardware and image compositing methods.

Intel provides an option to add in your Xorg.conf for i915 (TearFree = true), but it's just a workaround.

Solution: Give Wayland a try. It requires a bit of reading but it is totally worth it.


Yeah its only the screens connected to the NVIDIA card.

Might give the VM idea a go thanks for the suggestion!

On the weekend I ended up building a desktop just for Linux (FX6300+GTX960) so hopefully I can start at least playing around :)

Thanks for the suggestion mate, I'll check it out!