The idiots who claim non-Free software is somehow better because it’s non-Free should have been here last night. The Little Woman had her GNU/Linux PC crash. Traceback showed a bug in the “nouveau” driver. She was also using an older kernel that came with her distro. I thought I would upgrade her to a newer kernel hoping to leave that bug behind…
- Linux 3.15 was difficult to build on her machine. She has very little RAM so it was “make -j 1” or nothing… (in retrospect, I could have copied the configs over and built on Beast, 4X faster, but I was “almost there”…)
- After an hour or so I had a working kernel configured for her particular machine but the “nouveau” driver wouldn’t use the full resolution of the monitor… not even close.
- I decided to use Nvidia’s non-Free driver. It works fine on two other PCs running this kernel…
- Nope. It wouldn’t build without reconfiguring and rebuilding the kernel several times to get it right, but after many hours I got it working.
- That’s a lot of hours but it was compounded by Nvidia not supporting her hardware with their latest driver, you know the one that’s a click or two from downloading? I had to hunt for it, looking at several “legacy” drivers all of which Nvidia said would work.
So, the result was I pulled an “all-nighter” just because Nvidia didn’t contribute full-heartedly to the Linux kernel at least in the old days… Their EULA essentially denies users the right to reverse-engineer their stuff so it’s on them. Now, 3.15 updates every week or so… I am sorely tempted to upgrade her machine to another motherboard with anything but Nvidia on it. 8-( If the next upgrade is not real smooth Nvidia is toast around here.