New to Linux gaming: Some questions

Hey folks,

I came here because I saw the video of Linus Tech Tips. I am a Linux user since 3 years now. I always used Mint with cinnamon as distro.

System Specs:
Processor: Intel Core i7 4770
GPU: Nvidia GTX 1050Ti
Monitors: 4 (2x DVI, 1x HDMI, 1x DP (using an DP -> HDMI adapter))

A short information about the monitors: All of those monitors are connected to the 1050Ti and it works fine on Windows and with the default nouveau driver.

System Info:
Nvidia Driver Version: 390.77 (manually downloaded from the NVIDIA Website)
“uname -a”:
Linux lnx-pc 4.15.0-29-generic #31-Ubuntu SMP Tue Jul 17 15:39:52 UTC 2018 x86_64 x86_64 x86_64 GNU/Linux
“lsb_release -a”:

No LSB modules are available.
Distributor ID:	LinuxMint
Description:	Linux Mint 19 Tara
Release:	19
Codename:	tara

These are all the information that came into my mind. If you need more info, please ask :slight_smile:

Now to my actual questions:

I’ve recently upgraded my distro to Mint 19. It’s now using lightdm as display manager and when having nouveau installed, the system boots fine (and very fast) but has some major issues (the display manager often gets stuck and is laggy in terms of animations, etc. I can even notice it when scrolling down pages that have much content.). Then I installed the proprietary driver from Nvidia (listed above) and now I am having the problem, that my system won’t boot when all 4 monitors are connected. If I unplug one it’s booting fine and after it has booted and lightdm has started, I can even plug the monitor back in and it’s working as intended.

Is there any fix for that? (I’m not really hyped to crawl under my desk every morning to unplug my monitor) :confused:

Another question is: Is it possible to play games like CS:GO on that VM? I’ve heard, that VAC has some detection for VMs. My thought is that for the Nvidia driver to install I have to set some variables, that the driver doesn’t detect, that it’s running in on a VM. Would VAC then still be able to detect the VM?

Then I saw that thing with GPU passthrough: I don’t have two powerful GPUs in my system. But I have my 1050Ti and my Onboard graphics. My idea is to use the onboard graphics for Linux and the 1050Ti for the Windows VM. Is this possible?

Do I need a Monitor connected to the 1050Ti to use LookingGlass?

And finally: Is it possible to use one Keyboard/Mouse for both systems (without using a switch)?

Thank you in advance :slight_smile:


you’re using an ubuntu spin, so you probably shouldn’t be using the binaries from the nvidia site. there should be a “3rd party” or “nonfree” repo that has a supported meta-package with all the appropriate conf edits to boot properly

yes, via:

at present only vmware and vbox VMs are detected by any anti-cheats. KVM is fine.

nope, that’s the whole point

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I just told a friend about what I’ve planned and he gained interest in it but has no on-board graphics. Is it still possible for him to use his GPU for the VM?

yes, but he will need a cheap display card like a GT 710 for the host in the meantime


Ok. Then another question from me: I decided to install Ubuntu directly. Just for me to understand:

Is something like Ubuntu Budgie the same 3rd party thing as Linux Mint or is that just like a theme?

it’s a different desktop environment, but everything else should be the same

note that you will have to mess with apparmor settings to get vfio working properly in anything debian based

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What distro would you suggest to use for the setup?

fedora seems to be the most popular “user friendly” one for it at the moment

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Basically this, all he needs is a second card, even a more powerful one will work fine. He just needs to be sure that he has enough PCI-E slots for both cards, and that his CPU supports VT-d.

There are many different 'buntus. while some of them may be community projects, and thus not officially supported by canonical, they use the same repos and provide the same software set with the only difference being the software that comes preinstalled. This is different than Mint, where the Linux Mint team actually rolls their own software repositories, which is where most of the problems with Mint come from.

It’s hard to go wrong with Fedora, but that also goes for most Linux distros. If you intend to use the distro for regular desktop use as well, I would recommend basing your decisions on more than just VFIO setup.

Fedora or Ubuntu are good places to start, but don’t be afraid to distro hop to find what works best for you. I’ve used Ubuntu, Fedora, Manjaro and OpenSUSE; and GPU passthrough worked great on all four of them.

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to expand on this: put home on a separate partition. this lets you install different distros in-place without losing any data


For now I chose Ubuntu since I currently don’t have that much time to completely change the system.

I was following this thread for setting up the passthrough stuff: Ubuntu 17.04 -- VFIO PCIe Passthrough & Kernel Update (4.14-rc1)

When setting up the vfio stuff, wendell writes configurations that seem to be for AMD GPUs. Configurations that he wrote (like /etc/initramfs-tools/modules) contain amdgpu. What do I need to write in that position when using the GTX 1050Ti for passthrough?

(Now using Kernel version 4.15.0-29-generic)