NVIDIA GPU / Graphics Card troubleshooting

Problem: GPU card is not accessible in Linux desktop/laptop/server


The graphics card of a computer might stop working for multiple reasons.

- Driver version mismatch

- Hardware wiring

- Other issues


This could result in

  • Login issue with GUI

  • Distorted display etc.

If the issue is related to NVIDIA driver, we can resolve it in following way:


Check Problem


Step-1: Login to the system

If GUI login is not working, use tty login to access via command prompt

CTRL + ALT + F1 to CTRL + ALT + F7


Step-2 Type command nvidia-smi and check the result


If drive is not communicating with card, we get an error

"NVIDIA-SMI has failed because it couldn’t communicate with the NVIDIA driver"



Possible Solution


  • Check if Graphics card is detected

"hwinfo" is a nice utility to detect graphics card in your system.

If this utility is not installed:

sudo apt install hwinfo

Command to see GPU in Linux

An alternate method is to use "lshw" command


Command to see available display option including Graphics card
Linux command for check display option


  • Search for NVIDIA driver in apt

apt-cache search nvidia-driver


Note: If you have GUI access, the same information is available at

System Settings => Software & Updates => Additional Drivers

Check NVIDIA drivers in your Linux system
Search available NVIDIA driver


  • Install latest package (nvidia-465) in this example

sudo apt-get install –reinstall nvidia-465


  • Reboot

Check if nvidia-smi command is working fine now


Note: If above steps are not helpful and full removal with new installation is required (Be CAREFUL):

https://askubuntu.com/questions/206283/how-can-i-uninstall-a-nvidia-driver-completely



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