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Nouveau is an open source graphic driver for nVidia cards.


Have a look at the FeatureMatrix and the list of codenames.


Install the following packages :

pacman -S nouveau-drm xf86-video-nouveau


You can use the following xorg.conf, which allows you to easily switch back to other drivers :

Section "Device"
       Identifier "nvidia"
       Driver "nouveau"
       #Driver "nv"
       #Driver "nvidia"

Note from the Featurematrix for NV50 chipset and Xv support :

Now it works fine, but you need Xserver from git. In other case you need to run a composite manager
(Compiz won't work, something like xcompmgr or KWin with XRender).

So you can set up xcompmgr.


1) Add the following line to /etc/modprobe.d/modprobe.conf:

options nouveau modeset=1

2) Remove all "vga=" and "video=" options from your kernel commandline in /boot/grub/menu.lst

You can have a look at Intel instructions for an early start Intel_Graphics#KMS_.28Kernel_Mode_Setting.29

Alternative installation

If the archlinux packages don't work, you could try more current packages from AUR : nouveau-drm-snapshot and xf86-video-nouveau-git

If this still does not work, you can try the way recommended by upstream, which is to install a kernel already including the nouveau drm modules : kernel26-nouveau-git


3D support is still very experimental and unsupported, but if you want to give it a try anyway, you can install nouveau-dri-git.