Acesabes Workbench

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-Nice tidy workbench here!

Will start a manual Nvidia graphics driver install how to soon i think...

Acesabe 05:51, 9 Feb 2006 (EST)

And a year and a half later....!


Installing Nivida Graphics Drivers - Manually

Although the MEPIS X-Windows Assistant offers an easy way to install Nvidia drivers, sometimes it is necessary to have to install them manually, for example - when you are running a different kernel version to the standard MEPIS one, or you want the latest and greatest from nvidia or you are having problems getting the Debian one to run.

The Debian Way

This how-to is based on info from this excellent page by Andrew E. Schulman - good work! To use this method you will need:

  • An nvidia graphics card - supported by the version of the driver you wish to use
  • The kernel source of the kernel you have installed and want to be using with the nvidia drivers
  • nvidia-kernel-common
  • nvidia-glx
  • module-assistant
apt-get install module-assistant nvidia-kernel-common
m-a prepare
m-a auto-install nvidia
apt-get install nvidia-glx

And it's done - you will need to edit your /etc/X11/xorg.conf to use the new drivers (see instructions below).

Note- the module-assistant method is subject to package dependencies - it may be necessary to find a workaround in order to install the correct versions of the kernel-headers - depending on which kernel you are using. If you have upgraded your system to a newer release of Debian (i.e. to unstable or testing) - you will have problems as the module-assistant uses the gcc compiler, and this has to be the same version that was used to compile the kernel you are currently using.

The Nvidia Way

If you need the very latest Nvidia driver available, fetch them from the Nvidia drivers portal:

and save them in a directory of your choice (~/ or ~/Desktop/ usually)

You will also need to Install_kernel_headers for the kernel you are currently using:

apt-get install linux-headers-$(uname -r)

will install the correct kernel headers for you using the string *uname -r*

stop X and KDE (as root from command line):

telinit 3

which takes you out of X and to a command line login prompt. Log in as root then change to the directory where you saved the Nvidia binary installer file:

cd /home/youruserhomefolder/

Now start the installer

sh NVI

Hit the <Tab> key to auto-complete the long filename (if it doesn't work - check you are in the correct location - i.e. the file is in this working directory:


will list all files and folders in the current directory.

Hit return and follow the instructions as the installer prompts you. (The installer uses the Ncurses interface - use <Tab> to navigate selections.)

Choose to not search the ftp server for a pre compiled driver (it won't find one) and then choose to compile the driver. All being well (sometimes the installer can't find the kernel-headers and fails) your driver will then be compiled and installed.

All that is left is to edit the /etc/X11/xorg.conf file to use the new driver. The Nvidia installer will do this for you (using nvidia-xconfig) backing up your existing version of xorg.conf. You may prefer to edit the file manually yourself to change the two instances of "nv" (or perhaps "vesa") to read "nvidia". It is no longer necessary to hash (#) out the Load "dri" and Load "GLCore" lines - xorg will ignore what it can't use, but make sure 'Load "GLX"' is in the Module section.

cp /etc/X11/xorg.conf /etc/X11/xorg.conf.backup

to backup the existing xorg.conf

nano /etc/X11/xorg.conf

will open the file in nano for editing from the command line. Use <Ctrl>+o to save (hit return to confirm file name+location) <Ctrl>+x to quit. Save the file and re-boot:


to fire up your shiny new Nvidia powered xserver!


Synaptics Touchpad Xconfig - from MSC

To enable 'virtual scrolling' and (on my model) - the 4-direction joypad button - useful for web browsing - may be annoying when using other apps - pages toggling etc...

-you will need the package xfree86-driver-synaptics installed (should work for alps touchpads also

From xfree86

Section "InputDevice"

Identifier "Touchpad"
Driver "synaptics"
Option "Device" "/dev/psaux"
Option "Protocol" "auto-dev"
Option "LeftEdge" "1700"
Option "RightEdge" "5300"
Option "TopEdge" "1700"
Option "BottomEdge" "4200"
Option "FingerLow" "25"
Option "FingerHigh" "30"
Option "MaxTapTime" "180"
Option "MaxTapMove" "220"
Option "VertScrollDelta" "100"
Option "MinSpeed" "0.06"
Option "MaxSpeed" "0.12"
Option "AccelFactor" "0.0010"
Option "SHMConfig" "on"
Option "Repeater" "/dev/input/mice"


From xorg

Section "InputDevice"
Identifier	"Synaptics Touchpad"
Driver		"synaptics"
Option		"SendCoreEvents"	"true"
Option		"Device"		"/dev/psaux"
Option		"Protocol"		"auto-dev"
Option		"HorizScrollDelta"	"0"

-Both need to be referenced in the: Section "ServerLayout"

Upgrading Mepis 3.4-3 'Breaks' Nvidia driver Install

-be sure your problem is not simply xorg.conf related - check through Monitor_and_Display_Setup pages first

MEPIS 3.4-3 comes with the option to install the official nvidia drivers - which should work fine at time of install - problem is that if you upgrade your MEPIS install it will install a newer version of xorg: => 6.9.x but unfortunately (at time of writing 3/06) this conflicts with nvidia-glx <=1.0-7174-4 - the default nvidia version that is installed with MEPIS 3.4-3. There are several solutions to this situation:
  • Pin Your Nvidia Driver Config
Pinning Nvidia Drivers - (link) - Set your system to lock the versions of nvidia drivers you are using to prevent upgrade - remember to change version numbers to match the versions you want to pin
  • Don't Upgrade! (xorg/nvidia)
"If it ain't broke - don't try fix it!!" - If your nvidias are working - there is no need to upgrade them...unless of course you need newer versions to comply with the latest xorg version - which you need to get the funky xgl 3D eye candy stuff working - which of course we do!
  • Compile A Custom nvidia-kernel
It's not too difficult to make your own nvidia-kernel to use with whatever kernel you are running (whether its a stock one from MEPIS/Debian or one you have 'rolled yourself'.
The different methods of doing this are excellently documented here:Debian-nVidia HOWTO - The Debian Way - the preferred method being the 'module-assistant' method -as it is easy and uses the Debian package system to install - meaning it is easy to un-install afterwards using apt/synaptic/dpkg
Note - the module-assistant method has been proving un-successful lately (3/06) - this may be to do with the version of gcc used to compile the mepis kernel being older than the version installed on your system (un-confirmed at time of writing)
  • Use A Pre-Packaged .deb of nvidia-kernel Not In The Debian/MEPIS Repo's (coming soon)
Perhaps there is a .deb someone made earlier you can use....
  • Downgrade
It could be worth downgrading xorg/nvidia versions to avoid conflicts - in practice this will become harder as time goes by - the Debian repo's are constantly introducing newer versions - older packages getting more difficult to source. You can try using the 'Force Version' option in Synaptic - to see what versions are available via the repo's. If you wish to install packages manually you can find nvidia-glx 1.0.7174 in the MEPIS install cd - browse its folders, also try browsing:
-download the desired packages and click to install (with Kpackage) or from a command line as root from the download folder (cd /home/user/Desktop if you use Firefox):
dpkg -i package1 package2 etc

--Acesabe 13:45, 28 Mar 2006 (EST)


MEPIS Wiki Draft Main Page

To get you started, we've provided some links to many major areas of the wiki. If you cannot find what you are looking for, please use the search function of the wiki. If you have any questions or comments, please post them in the MEPIS Community forum

DSL wiki style

MEPIS Wiki Draft Main Page

To get you started, we've provided some links to many major areas of the wiki. If you cannot find what you are looking for, please use the search function of the wiki. If you have any questions or comments, please post them in the MEPISLovers forum.


Getting Started

Booting MEPIS live CD - needs writing!

Common Issues

Getting Help

The Forums

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People of MEPIS

Xgl/Compiz How-to

XGL + Compiz

5th Sept - DO NOT TRY THIS TODAY - IT WON'T WORK - I WILL UPDATE THIS SHORTLY - fixed when this message is gone

So far XGL/Compiz requires 'accelerated' graphics capabilities to work (Nvidia, Ati or Intel graphics cards)

XGL and Compiz is more than just impressive eye-candy - its actually very usable and improving all the time. Gset-compiz is a config tool that makes setting up Compiz much easier (than using gconf-editor). You will need to be running MEPIS 6 and have reasonable graphics hard/software running. I have an Nvidia GeForce4 64mb card - XGL/Compiz runs fine with this setup - and will probably work OK with 32mb also. More info can be found at the [] forums - [ Ubuntuforums] also has some useful info.

How-to: Install XGL and Compiz

There are two ways presently, of installing XGL & Compiz:

  • 1 - To start both XGL and Compiz at KDE login
  • 2 - To have the choice at login which session you require (Xorg or XGl)

The first method starts XGL and Compiz with KDM - there is no choice. This isn't recommended until XGL/Compiz is past beta stages and can be relied on.

The second method has the advantage of session type choice - so if you want a 'normal' non XGL/Compiz session - you can. It also uses the cgwd window manager - which is themeable and customizable, video playback seems better using this also. It is based on this how-to:

How to switch between XGL and Xorg for KDM/GDM

How to - for Nvidia/Ati users with the Gnome or cgwd window decorator

First off - add one or all of the following repos (they all contain the same packages - but may be temperamental) to your /etc/apt/sources.list:

deb dapper main

deb dapper main

deb dapper main

-see for latest info

If you want Gset-compiz (recommended) also add Treviño's repo:

deb dapper 3v1n0

-as it appears that Gset-compiz is not currently in the Ubuntu/Compiz repos.

apt-get update

The gpg keys always seem to be flaky - i have given up on them - this will produce an apt-get update error - but should not affect the install - see above link for more info re the gpg keys.

Install the necessary packages:

apt-get install xserver-xgl compiz gconf-editor gset-compiz

-if you want to use the Gnome window decorator (instead of the newer but less stable CGWD) then:

apt-get install compiz-gnome

-If you want the newer CGWD window decorator (updated often - but still under heavy development):

Temporarily disable all Ubuntu and MEPIS repos in your /etc/apt/sources.list file (the pinning in MEPIS prevents package upgrade from non Ubuntu/MEPIS repo's initially) - then:

apt-get update

apt-get install cgwd cgwd-themes

apt-get upgrade- you may need to do a apt-get dist-upgrade to get the very latest packages as some are in the Ubuntu repos while some of the very latest packages are only in the Compiz repos - and may depend on each other. Do not do a dist-upgrade with all repos enabled - it may break your OS!

The latest 'bleeding edge' versions of Compiz comes with plugins that may cause poor performance/hangs - but can be disabled

-remember to revert your /etc/apt/sources.list to previous and update again.

Make sure you have your Nvidia accelerated drivers installed and working (white/green Nvidia splash screen at X startup) and in your /etc/X11/xorg.conf - make sure you have in your section "Device":

Section "Device"

Identifier leave this line alone!

Driver "nvidia"

BusID "PCI:1:0:0"

Option "RenderAccel" "true"


Make sure your default color depth is "24". This is very important (apparently!)

These are the scripts i have working on my XGl/Compiz for Nvidia: (all 'executable - either as root: chmod 755 /path/to/file or right click file in Konqueror - Super User mode - Properties > Permissions - check the 'Is executable' box )

usr/bin/ - to initiate an XGl server


xmodmap /usr/share/xmodmap/

Xgl -fullscreen :1 -ac -accel glx:pbuffer -accel xv:pbuffer & sleep 2 && DISPLAY=:1

exec startkde

-note the part is for my UK keyboard layout - but this file doesn't exist so I'm not sure its relevant!

usr/bin/startcompiz - starts up Compiz (using the cgwd window decorator)



if ps -A | grep -e "Xgl" > /dev/null; then

killall cgwd

cgwd &

compiz --replace gconf &


usr/share/xsessions/xgl.desktop - adds session type 'XGl/Compiz' to KDE login page


[Desktop Entry]






/home/your user name here/.kde.Autostart/startcompiz - auto-starts Compiz once KDE is running (does nothing if no XGl is running already - i.e. when not selecting XGl/Compiz session Code:



Re-start X (or reboot) - with any luck you will now have the session option of XGl/Compiz at login and can now start your XGl + Compiz session - enjoy!

[Screenshot here]

Brooko's Wine Update (from .odf file)

Needs the updated bits moving to the wine page

Installing Wine from Synaptic

Installing Wine can be as simple as selecting it in Synaptic. It is in the default repositories, though the version is often a lot older.

If you want a more up to date version of Wine, it is often better to check the package sharing section of MepisLovers (for a community made deb), or install the newest Wine debs from WineHQ.

Installing Wine from Community deb file

1.First uninstall any old versions of Wine you may have installed (via Synaptic). 2.Next download the Wine deb file from the link provided in the package sharing section of Mepis Lovers 3.Once you've downloaded, click on the deb file - it will open in kpackage. 4.Choose install. Provide root password when prompted. After installation, close kpackage. 5.To check the install, open a konsole and type winecfg. If installed successfully, a window will start with the Wine configuration utility.

Installing the newest Wine debs from WineHQ

You can get latest Wine version from the WineHQ sources rather than from the default repos (this will ensure you have the latest version):

Open a root konsole Add the signing key, for security: wget -q -O- | sudo apt-key add -

Add the repository: If you are running MEPIS 7.x, copy and paste in this command: wget -O /etc/apt/sources.list.d/winehq.list

If you are running MEPIS 6.x, copy and paste in this command:

wget -O /etc/apt/sources.list.d/winehq.list

Close konsole and then open Synaptic

Refresh sources, by clicking on the Reload button.

Search for wine. There may be a list of files called 'wine' or containing the word 'wine'. Scroll down until you find the wine file (hint – it's only called wine). Highlight it. Now choose (from top menu) Package > Force Version. A window will open with a drop down box. Choose the latest version (hint – it should show 'winehq' somewhere in the version information. Click apply to install. After installation, close Synaptic, and from a konsole, type: winecfg If installed successfully, a window will start with the Wine configuration utility.

Configuring and Using Wine

After you have installed Wine you will need to configure it by entering the command winecfg

winecfg sets up a folder in your home directory called ".wine/" which contains some configuration files and a virtual "C drive". This GUI program will also allow you to make some additional tweaks, such as mapping additional drive letters, configuring video and audio options, or selecting the version of windows to emulate (all of which can be done on a per-program basis).

Once you have done this, you can start a Windows program like this: 1.Put program install CD in your drive 2.Right click CD icon in your desktop and select "mount" 3.Once CD mounted, click the icon and you should get a konqueror window with /media/cdrom already in the main pane - displaying the contents of the CD. Have a look and locate the normal install file for windows (often "install.exe" or "setup.exe") 4.F4 in Konqueror will start a konsole (terminal) window in the /media/cdrom directory 5.Type wine progname.exe where progname is the install file name. Make sure you have uppercase / lowercase correct, and include the extension ".exe" or ".bat" etc. 6.With luck, the installer should start just as if windows was operating.

Tips and Tweaks


winetricks is a script written by Dan Kegel which can help you install a variety of free and non-free software to help Wine function better. Download the script by right-clicking on the link and selecting "save link as...". Then run it in a console with the command: sh winetricks

This will give you a list of things you can install with winetricks.

Install Microsoft fonts

Get the Microsoft core fonts, otherwise Wine windows might be unreadable. It's in the repositories, just install the package msttcorefonts. Since you are there install fontforge package too.

You can also install corefonts through winetricks: sh winetricks corefonts

Install Windows installer

Now, you want to install Windows installer. Installer 2 will do fine if you install it under the Windows 98 emulation. Note that you may only install this if you have a valid license of Windows. Get it from here:

windows installer

If you run that in Wine and nothing happens, run winecfg and make sure you've set it to emulate Windows 98 by default. The installer won't run if you're in 2000 or XP mode.

You can also install it using winetricks with the command: sh winetricks msi2


Another approach to installing IE is to download ies4linux. This simple script automatically installs IE on your machine under Wine (you need to have Wine installed first). To get it, enter the following commands into a (non-root) konsole: wget tar zxvf ies4linux-latest.tar.gz cd ies4linux-* ./ies4linux

Other Remember that Wine configurations are per-user, which means that if you set up Wine and install Windows software as one user, the programs will not be available to other users. They will need to set up Wine and install the programs individually.

With all due respect to the Wine developers, do not expect miracles from Wine. A lot of Windows programs work really well under Wine, however it pays to check the Winehq compatibility database ( before trying to install a program. This site often has pointers on how to install certain programs, dlls or patches required, and if it runs well / erratically / or not at all under the Wine environment.

Don't be surprised if you experience erratic behavior, failure to start, or failure to install. And don't expect immediate compatibility with the latest Windows games / programs. Wine often works best with older (more established) and more popular Windows applications.

If you have Windows installed on a second partition, and mount that partition and try to run programs installed there with Wine, it generally does not work. You usually need to reinstall the programs in Wine so that the proper registry entries and DLL files can be present in the Wine install.

Links Wine FAQs Wine HQ CodeWeavers CrossOver Franks Corner (

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