Ubuntu Dapper Installation Guide

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Method 1: Installing Dapper's Included Driver (8.23.7)

The fglrx driver supports Radeon 8500+ and the X-series cards up to X850.

Installing the driver

sudo apt-get install linux-restricted-modules-$(uname -r) #Okay if it is already installed
sudo apt-get install xorg-driver-fglrx
sudo aticonfig --initial


Confirm that it works

$ fglrxinfo
display: :0.0  screen: 0
OpenGL vendor string: ATI Technologies Inc.
OpenGL renderer string: RADEON 9700 Generic
OpenGL version string: 2.0.5695 (8.23.7)


  • The output of dmesg | grep fglrx and /var/log/Xorg.0.log are most useful when looking for errors.
  • It might be necessary to create a symlink to get accelerated OpenGL:
sudo ln -s /usr/lib/dri /usr/lib/xorg/modules/dri
  • To ensure you automatically get the current linux-restricted-modules package with kernel updates, you should install the linux-restricted-modules-??? package matching your kernel-type (without version numer), e.g. linux-restricted-modules-386, linux-restricted-modules-686 or linux-restricted-modules-k7.

Method 2: Generating/Installing Ubuntu packages for the newer 8.23.7 drivers in Ubuntu Dapper

Important Change: Installation of this driver no longer requires removing the linux-restricted-modules package in order to work. There is a new blacklist feature in Ubuntu Dapper that you can use to go around this.

When running the dpkg-reconfigure command you should answer the questions that you know and take the defaults for the rest. You might want to say no to the monitor detection--it has caused X-Windows to crash for some people.

Remove existing fglrx driver

Blacklist fglrx module from linux-restricted-modules:

sudo gedit /etc/default/linux-restricted-modules-common

Edit DISABLED_MODULES to include fglrx

Remove Dapper's included fglrx drivers if they are installed:

sudo apt-get remove xorg-driver-fglrx
sudo apt-get remove fglrx-control
sudo dpkg-reconfigure xserver-xorg #select the "ati" module


Installing the new driver

Download the ATI driver installer: Click here

Change to the download directory. Make sure that you have the universe and multiverse repositories enabled in /etc/apt/sources.list before doing these steps.

Install necessary tools:

sudo apt-get install module-assistant build-essential 
sudo apt-get install fakeroot dh-make debconf libstdc++5 gcc-3.3-base

Create .deb packages:

chmod +x ati-driver-installer-8.23.7-i386.run
LANG=C LC_ALL=C ./ati-driver-installer-8.23.7-i386.run --buildpkg Ubuntu/dapper

Install .deb packages:

sudo dpkg -i xorg-driver-fglrx_8.23.7-1_i386.deb
sudo dpkg -i fglrx-control_8.23.7-1_i386.deb
sudo dpkg -i fglrx-kernel-source_8.23.7-1_i386.deb

Remove any old fglrx deb's from /usr/src/:

sudo rm /usr/src/fglrx-kernel*.deb

Compile the kernel driver:

sudo module-assistant prepare
sudo module-assistant update
sudo module-assistant a-i fglrx

Note: If sudo module-assistant a-i fglrx doesn't work then run the following:

sudo dpkg -i fglrx-kernel-source_8.23.7-1_i386.deb
sudo module-assistant build,install fglrx

This is because the current fglrx kernel source package in Dapper is marked "newer" than the one created by the ATI Installer.

Update the xorg.conf file:

sudo aticonfig --initial


Confirm that it worked

$ fglrxinfo
display: :0.0  screen: 0
OpenGL vendor string: ATI Technologies Inc.
OpenGL renderer string: RADEON 9700 Generic
OpenGL version string: 2.0.5695 (8.23.7)



Look for error messages in /var/log/Xorg.0.log and kern.log.

HP dv5029us Notebook PC

If you have an HP Notebook Computer such as the HP dv5029dvus it is needed to modify the BIOS configuration. It seems for some reason using sideport memory (the card's onboard memory only) leads to an apparent system crash although the logs show successful initialization of DRI. It is needed to run the BIOS setup screen, go to memory options, and select UMA+Sideport memory and assign a value to it (I assigned an extra 128M from the system RAM). Boot the computer and the fglrx driver will work. FGLRX version is 8.23.7 on an i386 Ubuntu Dapper install.