What is the deal with rpmfusion nvidia updates?

Stephen Morris samorris at netspace.net.au
Tue Nov 11 20:27:15 UTC 2014

On 11/11/2014 10:55 PM, Neal Becker wrote:
> Stephen Morris wrote:
>> On 11/11/2014 01:53 AM, Neal Becker wrote:
>>> Joe Zeff wrote:
>>>> On 11/09/2014 01:40 AM, Mike Chambers wrote:
>>>>> Try to install the new kernel first, then after, see if the new kmod
>>>>> will update.
>>>> Speaking from experience, when you update the kernel, the new kmod (if
>>>> available) is normally drawn in as a dependency.
>>> Except when, as I just showed, it isn't.
>> Just my 2 cents worth, as I understand things the kernel does not have
>> kmod-nvidia as a dependency, its the other way around, kmod-nvidia has a
>> dependency on the kernel version it has been compiled for. For example,
>> when I did a full system update yesterday the kernel was upgraded to the
>> latest version available in the mirrors dnf is using and kmod-nvidia was
>> upgraded to 3.16.6 at the same time, and then this morning rpm fusion
>> notified of an upgrade to kmod-nvidia to 3.16.7. I have just done a
>> normal 'dnf upgrade' which upgraded, in my case, kmod-nvidia and
>> kmod-virtualbox both to 3.16.7.
>> Just further to this I have also been in the situation where a kernel
>> has been updated and kmod-nvidia has not and at boot time the nvidia
>> driver would not start because the installed one was not compatible with
>> the new kernel. My system was still usable because I could reboot into
>> the older kernel that was compatible with the installed kmod-nvidia
>> driver, but in addition, xorg also falls back to the nouveau driver if
>> the nvidia driver doesn't work, and, if the nouveau driver is not
>> available it falls back to the vga driver before it gives up.
>> Having said this, compatibility between kmod-nvidia and the kernel is
>> not that big a deal for me as I also have akmod-nvidia installed so the
>> driver will be compiled and installed at boot time if necessary anyway.
>> regards,
>> Steve
> I don't think I've ever seen this fallback to nouveau behavior.  I believe the
> nouveau kernel parts are excluded at boot, so I don't know how that could work.
I'm basing xorg's functionality on messages I've seen in xorg.0.log 
where there are statements that it is checking for the nvidia driver, 
nouveau driver and vga driver in that order. I'm assuming from this that 
the kmod-nvidia package supplies the xorg driver as, unlike other 
distros, in Fedora I haven't seen any upgrades to what are obvious xorg 
driver packages when kmod-nvidia is upgraded.
As I understand it, the nouveau driver is built into the initramfs file, 
and unless this file is rebuilt at boot time when using akmod-nvidia 
instead of kmod-nvidia which is not obviously done, then akmod-nvidia 
users have nouveau in initramfs at boot time.


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