Ubuntu GPU check

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Hi,
I've just installed Ubuntu 22.04 LTS on my new build. First time using this in about a decade and slowly getting the hang of doing things and seems to be better than last time, but have one major concern with my GPU.

I'm running a 7900XTX and AMD Catalyst Control Centre is presumably not compatible as the AMD site just directs to downloading a driver. I've managed to get this to install via the Terminal, but under the 'about' section for my system it still lists a weird "GFX1036 (gfx1036, LLVM 15.0.7, DRM 3.49, 6.2.0-26-generic) / GFX110...." as Graphics. I would guess that refers to the CPU graphics, as I am running both monitors from the card just fine. Before I go any further, is there a way to check my card is indeed being detected correctly? I've read a terminal command but it doesn't specify the GPU name and comes back as 33MHz, which I guess is idling?

Any advice? I'd like to ensure it's all working before I get too deep into learning the O/S as it seems like it'll be a labour of love.
 
Soldato
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I seem to recall AMD GPUs are actually supported out the box with an open source driver, so it should be almost nothing to do, unless you want to update to a proprietary driver for some reason. Do you have a reason to do that? What is the machine being used for?

I haven't done this recently though so someone else may have more recent knowledge.
 
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hmmm...
i have a few opinions here around ubuntu (and with amd gpu too).

* first things first: i am on 23.04, and it's meaningfully more modern for open graphics stack. for example mesa version. etc. and this should be important for you if you are running a navi3 card. being still so new in terms of the drivers. however also for other packages like kde plasma version too ---> need to be on 23.04 instead for that one.

* unfortunately, amd in their supreme wisdom has not decided to support non-lts versions for its closed source gpu drivers. (but which are difficult and/or problematic to install anyhow). but is required for being able to install the amd 'hip' compute drivers support (which is still pretty bad even if you do install it right).

so you have a kindda split choice there with the current ubuntu versions.

as for whether its a cpu? --> you didn't state your cpu
as for checking whether drivers are installed and working properly --> i had to check this myself a couple of months ago. but have forgotten now. and will need to look that up.

but there is maybe a few more things to be concerned about. for example:

* lets say you are on the lts. and it's mesa is 'behind' ---> you might be tempted to install 3rd party mesa drivers from some mesa ppa ---> this can pretty easily break your system. and pretty badly i might add. (for when i did break my system, it took some hoops to recover the resultant broken apt packages broken state, including special tool known as 'ppa purge' etc, no it's not fun and you stand a good chance of completely breaking your system if you cannot recover, then you cannot update anymore).

* steam flatpak is great, it's the way to go for steam.

* what else? well on my system, i tried to install the proprietary drivers... which broke my system (seperately from the mesa breakage, not related but same deal broken packages). anyhow, after recovering, then i did some further updates. and the open source radon driver then was being auto-disabled somehow. and i never figured out why, but something was blacklisting the radion amd gpu module in /etc/modprobe.d/ folder. which i absolutely did not do myself. but resulted in a black broken login screen. the remedy was simple. but still, it's another potential issue to be aware of, if your login screen suddenly dissapears.

hopefully at least some of these issues won't be applicable to you. but more broadly speaking:

* to get the latest version of amd's open source drivers you probably want to keep updated to the newest kernels. for that i recommend installing xanmod kernels. and those will keep you updated pretty well. they are great, and rock solid.
 
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Thanks. It seems like a lot of things to learn compared to Windows and I'm just slowly making my way through it. I don't mind if it's worth it in the long run but I remember giving up before. Tbh the default steam install seemed to be all over the place and I couldn't change the game install location or figure out what the equivalent was for %appdata% where I should place my saves from windows. :/ Also lost all my collections and can't seem to find where to copy the alleged file over that contains them. I'm sure it's just learning where things are but it is a bit of starting from scratch.
I think I got the flatpak version installed now, but I can't find it anywhere.
I also clicked the button in steam to only show linux compatible games and my library went from 700+ to under 200. That may be a sticking point if that's accurate.

CPU is 7800X3D, but as I say, nothing plugged into it so it does seem the GPU is detected. I guess when I start running some games I'll know for sure.

I went with the LTS version thinking it might be a bit of a hassle to upgrade every 6-9 months otherwise. Stability seemed like a good plan.
 
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I think it's fair to say that on linux, the number of different software components to understand and learn to install is a fair bit higher (more chess pieces). To check and make sure each one(s) are installed and updated or working correctly. This is mostly due to the ad-hoc and long times evolved mess nature of how the mesa graphics libraries and stack has slowly grown and been retro fitted over time. Along with the different GPU vendors each providing their own different sorts of solutions. However the internet is your friend and a lot of answers can be found, after realizing which piece(s) are needed. To know what to search for.

And once you are done with setting up, then basically it's working pretty well. In terms of steam then flatpak --> configure with flatseal --> add your steam drive folder(s). And install whichever proton version(s) you need. Is pretty straightforward. The reason you need steam as-a flatpak is because they have then brought their own libraries and mesa stack into flatpak runtime. So it's difficult to mis-configure the steam environment when installing via flatpak. Versus installing native, eh, where it depends on whichever mesa version you happen to have installed (which might not be the most up to date, and especially on the LTS is behind, as i have previously explained why you need to be on the 23.04).

> I think I got the flatpak version installed now, but I can't find it anywhere.

when you install a flatpak, it's supposed to install a .desktop file which then XDG and your launcher should "see" as another copy of steam to be able to launch / run. However if you also have the native version installed too (of same app). Then sometimes it's difficult to distinguish which version of that duplicate entry you are actually selecting and launching (whether the native app, or the flatpak sandboxed version).

If you still cannot see it, then can go on cmdline and `flatpak run com.valve <TAB>`... and shell will try to autocomplete for you, and say use the reverse FQDN (full name) of the app to launch. And launch it that ways. (it's com.valvesoftware.Steam BTW)


To help check on things, here are some utilities you can install, to better interrogate you GPU (and loaded drivers... but perhaps not all of these utils support the latest and greatest amd hardware fully yet...)

Code:
# nvtop is for all gpus, including amd, intel too
sudo add-apt-repository -y ppa:flexiondotorg/nvtop
sudo apt install nvtop radeontop

# install rust crates - amd utilities
# see: https://wiki.archlinux.org/title/AMDGPU#See_also
cargo install amdgpu_top amdfand amdvold amdmond amdguid amdgui-helper

# install tuxclocker
sudo apt install -y libqt5x11extras5-dev qtbase5-dev libqt5x11extras5 libdrm-amdgpu1 libdrm-common libdrm-dev

mkdir -p ~/.builds/gaming
cd ~/.builds/gaming
git clone https://github.com/Lurkki14/tuxclocker
cd tuxclocker
git checkout pstatetest
qmake rojekti.pro
make
sudo make install
ln -sf /opt/tuxclocker/bin/tuxclocker ~/.bin


# install ddcutil - control monitor settings - icc color profiles, edid, i2c, everything
sudo apt install -y ddcutil

# dump everything about all connected monitors
sudo ddcutil interrogate  2>&1 | tee -a ddcutil.interrogate

however there are also other useful tools for example `mangohud`, `cpu-x`(=linux clone version of cpu-z), `hardinfo` (=linux clone version of 'device manager'), and several other ones (which i simply forget what they are right now).
 
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*BTW: I would go as far to say that you should completely un-install the native version of Steam. Just remove it from your system. And rely on the steam flatpak alone, (but along with `flatseal` to manage permissions / folders). And enable beta mode within steam (newer stuff).
 
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Thanks, I'd uninstalled the snap version but I think I needed a restart to see the flatpak one. Looks like it has a gamepad error for me to fix, but I'll get to that.

The GPU is an odd one. It's now showing Raphael Mendocino, which I'm certain is the 7800X3D - but unless that can physically run through the dGPU where my cables are plugged in, I can't see that I'm using it. I found someone about 'swapping' the GPU in the terminal, but I'm reluctant to break anything.
It also failed the AMD verification tool, but if all that does is look at the system info then of course it would be wrong.
 
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I seem to recall having to install a 'steamdevices' package on Pop OS to get a controller working. May or may not be your issue.....
Could be. I wrote down the error for later. Trouble is I've got a long list already of adjustments and things that don't work (which may or may not have workarounds) already. Several things I've tried to install don't seem to exist anymore. Sometimes it says they're in another package, but doesn't say what.
I'm not an expert with grubs and kernels so the compatibility issues may be something that just isn't going to work for me in the long run.
 
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Then I believe you need to be more specific there, for each individual case(s). Many answers are on places like StackExchange* (though not always).
 
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Then I believe you need to be more specific there, for each individual case(s). Many answers are on places like StackExchange* (though not always).
I've found a few. Some good, some seem to be out of date. For example there was one about Gnome so I could customise the desktop bars etc, but it came back as being in another package.

It's by no means a bad O/S. I think a lot is just that things aren't supported, so you're relying on a community to build things to make it work or looking at Wine and Proton as workarounds (if possible) among a long list of other things. Then there's the added complexity of trying to implement it all and understand what you're being directed to.
 
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a lot is just that things aren't supported, so you're relying on a community to build things

Well in terms of 3rd party pkgs then [a bit] improved way is to install deb-get. To assist with that. It's by no means ideal or perfect. But can help sometimes, since it does things like: auto-adds the 3rd party PPAs for you when installing a pkg. Or fetches and updates other software direct from github releases as a standalone .deb download (if not in any such apt repos). That you would otherwise have to be downloading manually. And updating manually.

Another nice tool is topgrade. Because that helps you update more than just the apt pkgs. But other pkgs too. Of course I am not saying you have to use these. Or and other specific ones (apx and distrobox comes to mind...)

In terms of 'relying upon a community to build things'... it's not necessarily any different or better situation on other distros. For example arch or fedora. This is just generally how the broader linux ecosystem works. There will always be some portion of pkgs (at least for gaming) that are 3rd party. And officially included with the core distro. Be that thru the AUR or whichever other mechanism(s).

Then there's the added complexity of trying to implement it all and understand what you're being directed to.
Yes. Which is why I write down notes for everything I do. So that there is a record to refer back to. A bit like a laboratory journal - it's just a text file with the lines of commands in it, and comments to explain what is what. In fact I already posted some such example earlier here in this thread.

In terms of learning / understanding part - that also does require some time and effort to become familiar. So as a general go-to resource (to gain better familiarity) then I strongly recommend reading the relevant section(s) on the arch wiki. Perhaps I should have mentioned earlier but they have some great pages on GPU drivers specifics too. There really isn't any better resource out there for that purpose. It's really handy, and just as useful on any other distro(s) that isn't arch. Highly recommended.
 
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Well in terms of 3rd party pkgs then [a bit] improved way is to install deb-get. To assist with that. It's by no means ideal or perfect. But can help sometimes, since it does things like: auto-adds the 3rd party PPAs for you when installing a pkg. Or fetches and updates other software direct from github releases as a standalone .deb download (if not in any such apt repos). That you would otherwise have to be downloading manually. And updating manually.

Another nice tool is topgrade. Because that helps you update more than just the apt pkgs. But other pkgs too. Of course I am not saying you have to use these. Or and other specific ones (apx and distrobox comes to mind...)

In terms of 'relying upon a community to build things'... it's not necessarily any different or better situation on other distros. For example arch or fedora. This is just generally how the broader linux ecosystem works. There will always be some portion of pkgs (at least for gaming) that are 3rd party. And officially included with the core distro. Be that thru the AUR or whichever other mechanism(s).


Yes. Which is why I write down notes for everything I do. So that there is a record to refer back to. A bit like a laboratory journal - it's just a text file with the lines of commands in it, and comments to explain what is what. In fact I already posted some such example earlier here in this thread.

In terms of learning / understanding part - that also does require some time and effort to become familiar. So as a general go-to resource (to gain better familiarity) then I strongly recommend reading the relevant section(s) on the arch wiki. Perhaps I should have mentioned earlier but they have some great pages on GPU drivers specifics too. There really isn't any better resource out there for that purpose. It's really handy, and just as useful on any other distro(s) that isn't arch. Highly recommended.
Interestingly deb-get is one of the packages that comes back as unable to locate. I'm probably missing a step though. Obviously a lot comes down to market share, so windows being more accessible and GUI friendly is fair enough. I do hope I can get it set up in the way I like, and for now I have to go with it as Win7 crashes on install so isn't an option unless I find a workaround.

I appreciate your comments. I will probably end up posting more in here as I get to grips with it all.

I'll take a look at the arch wiki. I may just be experiencing a visual bug and all is perfectly well. I checked my bios and it's set to prioritise iGPU.
 
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