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Linux Overclocking Software

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 7 years ago | from the running-hot-or-not dept.

Software 30

An anonymous reader writes to tell us Phoronix has posted an article that covers the basics of GPU and CPU overclocking utilities available for Linux. From the article: "In 2005 we had featured several articles on the state of NVIDIA graphics card overclocking under Linux. In early 2005 the only option for Linux users was NVClock. The open-source NVClock was started by Roderick Colenbrander in 2001 and since then has been evolving. However, coming out in June of 2005 from the NVIDIA camp was CoolBits support for their alternative operating system drivers."

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30 comments

!500 years ago I killed the pope hat (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17110526)

Dogrape and apple tea. Live inside a working bee. Stop and set the machinegun free. Askolopodifus maximus gorilla war.

Re:!500 years ago I killed the pope hat (2, Funny)

A beautiful mind (821714) | more than 7 years ago | (#17110540)

Hm maybe I overclocked my gpu too much because my screen only displays gibberish now...

Re:!500 years ago I killed the pope hat (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17110550)

This story went ages (in Slashdot time) without a comment. And yet the FP is still crap.

Why don't we ever see clever FPs on Slashdot anymore? Sad. :(

no, underclocking!!! (1)

mu22le (766735) | more than 7 years ago | (#17115204)

I wish I could underclock the nvidia 6400 mounted on my laptop to make it suck less power, the same way I underclock and undervolt the cpu, do you know if there's a way?

Priority ? (2, Insightful)

Rastignac (1014569) | more than 7 years ago | (#17110598)

Before overclocking the videocards, some priorities should be fixed: good Linux drivers, with good support, with advanced functions. Now, the drivers situation is far from perfect. Overclocking should come later.

Re:Priority ? (1)

Xabraxas (654195) | more than 7 years ago | (#17115500)

Are you joking? Nvidia makes very good Linux drivers. They are on par with the Windows drivers and have been for years.

Re:Priority ? (1)

Netino (1021745) | more than 7 years ago | (#17115702)

"Perfection" *always* must come later. If perfection would be possible.
We always must have *functional* drivers, and immediately *correct* problems.
Linux mainly have to stay (always was) at the technology borders.

Nvidia Linux Drivers (3, Informative)

information_storage (1025634) | more than 7 years ago | (#17110646)

Might I suggest that we work on creating good Nvidia Linux drivers before we work on overclocking our poorly driven hardware. I'm counting on nouveau http://nouveau.freedesktop.org/wiki/ [freedesktop.org] to save us unix/nvidia users in this respect.

Re:Nvidia Linux Drivers (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17110778)

Might I suggest you try creating the drivers yourself before telling other people what they can and can't do? There's a world of difference between writing a modern graphics card display driver and writing a little utility to poke a couple of bytes into a card.

Re:Nvidia Linux Drivers (1)

dextromulous (627459) | more than 7 years ago | (#17114580)

There's a world of difference between writing a modern graphics card display driver and writing a little utility to poke a couple of bytes into a card.
And another world of difference between poking a couple of bytes into an older graphics card (that had all of its video modes available to be read) and poking a couple of bytes into a newer graphics card that hides its capabilities.

Re:Nvidia Linux Drivers (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 7 years ago | (#17115530)

There's a world of difference between writing a modern graphics card display driver and writing a little utility to poke a couple of bytes into a card.
And another world of difference between poking a couple of bytes into an older graphics card (that had all of its video modes available to be read) and poking a couple of bytes into a newer graphics card that hides its capabilities.

Oh yeah?

From the summary:

However, coming out in June of 2005 from the NVIDIA camp was CoolBits support for their alternative operating system drivers."

Followup: From PC Mechanic [pcmech.com] , by way of google [justfuckinggoogleit.com] :

More and more, gamers, performance addicts, and adventurous computer enthusiasts are getting deeper and deeper into tweaking and overclocking their computers. To facilitate this process, and unlock a plethora of additional features related to the performance of your nVidia GeForce Video Card(s), Coolbits answers the call.

In other words, there's a world of difference between what you believe, and what is true. nVidia explicitly makes available the tweaking/overclocking functionality since last year even on linux, and since before that on Windows.

Re:Nvidia Linux Drivers (1)

dextromulous (627459) | more than 7 years ago | (#17135092)

I was not referring to overclocking video cards, but I see that I was too vague. One example of what I was referring to is the hiding of video mode capabilities. I would like to find a reference on the Internet, but I have only heard of this from Zack Rusin [blogspot.com] when he spoke at my local LUG. The gist of it is: the X.org people have to brute force newer (NVidia & ATI, IIRC) cards to see what video modes they support (as opposed to the old method where they were able to get a list directly from the card.)

Re:Nvidia Linux Drivers (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 7 years ago | (#17135352)

So what you're saying is that, when you are using the free nv or ati drivers, they can't get a list of resolutions ala vesa any more? That is pretty sad. Sorry I went off on you then, looks like what we had was a miscommunication.

Re:Nvidia Linux Drivers (1)

dextromulous (627459) | more than 7 years ago | (#17136192)

So what you're saying is that, when you are using the free nv or ati drivers, they can't get a list of resolutions ala vesa any more? That is pretty sad. Sorry I went off on you then, looks like what we had was a miscommunication.
That is my understanding, yes. However, I can't find any references, I don't know the proper terminology to search for them, and Zack's voice was quite hard to decipher at times. He did seem to know what he was talking about though.

NVidia mobile GPUs and Linux (3, Informative)

Pausanias (681077) | more than 7 years ago | (#17110654)

This has been a big complaint of mine for a long time. We all know that under Windows, NVidia has had this PowerMizer [nvidia.com] thing that allows you to lower GPU power consumption. And we all know about Coolbits, which allows you to over/underclock your GPU in both Windows and desktop linux.

Now here's the thing. Both Coolbits and PowerMizer are disabled for mobile GPUs under Linux. So when you're not needing full 3D performance, that NVidia card is sitting there sucking up your laptop battery power. Might as well load up Beryl [beryl-project.org] and go nuts.

Oh, and nvclock does not work on all GPUs. My mobile QuadroFX GPU, for example, seems particularly immune to it. When I run it nvclock seems to think it is underclocking my GPU, but I see no effects whatsoever---no reduction in the GPU temperature, for example, which is constantly sitting at 85C. Any other suggestions?

I keep on hearing about how bad the binary linux ATI drivers for linux are, but hey, at least they've got their PowerPlay (GPU downthrottler) thing working in Linux. Maybe for my next laptop I'll consider an ATI card.

Re:NVidia mobile GPUs and Linux (2, Informative)

D3m0n0fTh3Fall (1022795) | more than 7 years ago | (#17110708)

Maybe it is underclocking it, but the GPU sees the reduction in temperature and lowers the fan speed accordingly ? I would suggest finding an extremely GPU-bound benchmark and running it before and after your underclock attempt to try and make sure.

Re:NVidia mobile GPUs and Linux (1)

Andy Dodd (701) | more than 7 years ago | (#17112096)

Fan speeds usually have speed steps and not a continuous range. Usually it's "off, slow, or fast". Thus I'm sure he'd know if his fan speeds were changing.

It's a known fact that NVClock no longer supports "legacy" overclocking interfaces (i.e. directly twiddling the card rather than going through CoolBits) very well, and as a result, it's basically impossible to change clock speeds of 6000 and 7000 series mobile GPUs, as NVClock doesn't suport 6ks and 7ks very well without using CoolBits, and NVidia's drivers for Linux forcefully disable CoolBits on mobile GPUs at the moment.

In general, NVidia (and for a while NVClock's author) tried to disable overclocking on mobile GPUs (to avoid damage since laptops usually have tighter thermal tolerances than desktops), completely forgetting that mobile users might actually want to UNDERCLOCK their GPUs. On my old laptop, I had to specifically patch NVClock to consider the GeForce 4 Go 440 to be a desktop GPU so I could underclock it. In this case, it wasn't on NVidia's side, it was NVClock!

I heard back in March/April or so that NVidia was planning on enabling CoolBits for mobile GPUs on Linux some time during the 9x.xx series of drivers, which I don't believe are out for Linux yet. (Nope, looks like 87.76 is the latest...)

Re:NVidia mobile GPUs and Linux (1)

solafide (845228) | more than 7 years ago | (#17112304)

The 9xxx betas are out: I'm running 9742 on my Gentoo system right now. I don't know about the state of CoolBits though. Get the x86 Linux [nzone.com] or the amd64 Linux [nzone.com] 9742 drivers direct from nvidia, or get Gentoo [gentoo.org] and have the choice of being always up-to-date :).

Re:NVidia mobile GPUs and Linux (1)

Andy Dodd (701) | more than 7 years ago | (#17113630)

Turns out my post was a case of PEBCAK - I set the keyword for media-video/nvidia-drivers to ~x86, not x11-drivers/nvidia-drivers (the NV drivers were moved out of media-video and I didn't realize)

Going to try it on my laptop tonight.

Re:NVidia mobile GPUs and Linux (1)

Pausanias (681077) | more than 7 years ago | (#17116350)

Those drivers are out. And yes, somewhere in an obscure forum post on nvnewst.net ( a post that I can no longer find, by the way), they said they were considering enabling mobile powermizer/coolbits in the 9xxx drivers. They have not done so. I am running the 9625 drivers and there is no Coolbits and no powermizer on my laptop. And they don't have it in 9631 either.

I heard back in March/April or so that NVidia was planning on enabling CoolBits for mobile GPUs on Linux some time during the 9x.xx series of drivers, which I don't believe are out for Linux yet. (Nope, looks like 87.76 is the latest...)

Re:NVidia mobile GPUs and Linux (1)

Pausanias (681077) | more than 7 years ago | (#17116414)

No. The fan speeds do not change, and there is no change (relative to the default enon-nvclocked state) even when I manually set the fans continuously to their maximum setting using i8kfan.

No point in making the effort (-1, Troll)

Codename46 (889058) | more than 7 years ago | (#17110726)

How many popular games do you see ported to Linux, and how many people actually try to emulate new games in Linux? Not much. My suggestion: Stick with the consumer flow, and keep catering to Windows users.

Re:No point in making the effort (1)

GrizlyAdams (999280) | more than 7 years ago | (#17110798)

For you its more like no point in posting. Just because you don't use a 3D card in linux doesn't mean others don't.
I've run a few recent games in linux, mainly Half-Life 2 and GuildWars. Beryl & AIGLX/Xgl on a modern 3D card are nice for extra eyecandy. I use my GeForce 6800 & 6600 every time I boot into linux. You shouldn't berate the work of others simply because you have no use for it.

Re:No point in making the effort (1)

BobPaul (710574) | more than 7 years ago | (#17111054)

The only reason I was able to make the switch and stay was because I switched from ATI to nVidia where I had better luck with the, albeit closed, drivers.

I need my 3D hardware working in Linux or I couldn't stay here. Most of my friends that use linux are also linux gamers. We're mostly college engineering students currently working IT to pay the bills, but that's at about a dozen that I know directly right there, and that doesn't even include (I don't think) anyone in the ACM on campus over at the CS department where I know they have their own LUG.

Graphics hardware vendors and Linux/FOSS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17121584)

There is an wiki containing a list of computer hardware vendors with positive and negative criticism about how they stand ethically, environmentally, juridically, against competition, open standards, open source, device drivers, Linux, FOSS, etc.

ATI and Nvidia among others there are listed.

http://vendors.bluwiki.org/ [bluwiki.org]
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