Install NVIDIA drivers on Ubuntu 18.10

Ubuntu ships with some excellent driver support however, there may be some situations where you would want to install the propriety drivers instead. Personally, I prefer to use the propriety NVIDIA graphics drivers for my Ubuntu desktop as it just feels more snappy especially for gaming.

In this instance you will install NVIDIA drivers for the GeForce GT 730 graphics card, however, the same procedure can be used for other NVIDIA cards.

Identify and automatically install the graphics card

Before you proceed with any type of driver installation you will need to detect the model of the NVIDIA graphics cared installed on your system and this can be achieved by using the following command:

ubuntu-drivers devices

The following output should be displayed:

Let’s have a look at the output more closely, in particular the vendor, model and drivers:

  • Vendor: confirms that the installed graphics card is indeed an NVIDIA card.
  • Model: provides the information required to download the driver from the NVIDIA website. The information of use is retained in the square brackets, in this case [GeForce GT 730]
  • Driver: provides information on available drivers through the currently installed Linux distribution. In this instance the nvidia-driver-390 – distro non-free is the recommended driver.

If you are happy to go with the recommended driver then you could use the Ubuntu drivers command to install the recommended driver. There are two flavors of this command that can be used, the first one will automatically install the recommended driver from the ubuntu-drivers devices list:

ubuntu-drivers autoinstall

If you want to install a specific driver you can use the apt command. In this instance:

sudo apt install nvidia-340

The driver install should now begin. Once the installation is completed you can reboot your system and once restarted, your system should be using the newly installed drivers.