Appendix B. Minimum Software Requirements

Software Element Supported versions Check With...
Linux kernel 2.4.7 and newer cat /proc/version
XFree86* 4.0.1 and newer XFree86 -version
X.Org* 1.0, 1.1, 1.2, 1.3, 1.4, 1.5, 1.6, 1.7, 1.8, 1.9, 1.10, 1.11, 1.12 Xorg -version
Kernel modutils 2.1.121 and newer insmod -v

* It is only required that you have one of XFree86 or X.Org, not both. Sometimes very recent versions are not supported immediately following release, but we aim to support all new versions as soon as possible.

If you need to build the NVIDIA kernel module:

Software Element Min Requirement Check With...
binutils 2.9.5 size --version
GNU make 3.77 make --version
gcc 2.91.66 gcc --version
glibc 2.0 ls /lib/* > 6

If you build from source RPMs:

Required Software Element Check With...
spec-helper rpm rpm -qi spec-helper

All official stable kernel releases from 2.4.0 and up are supported; "prerelease" versions such as "2.4.3-pre2" are not supported, nor are development series kernels such as 2.3.x or 2.5.x. The Linux kernel can be downloaded from or one of its mirrors.

binutils and gcc can be retrieved from or one of its mirrors.

If you are using XFree86, but do not have a file /var/log/XFree86.0.log, then you probably have a 3.x version of XFree86 and must upgrade.

If you are setting up XFree86 4.x for the first time, it is often easier to begin with one of the open source drivers that ships with XFree86 (either "nv", "vga" or "vesa"). Once XFree86 is operating properly with the open source driver, you may then switch to the NVIDIA driver.

Note that newer NVIDIA GPUs may not work with older versions of the "nv" driver shipped with XFree86. For example, the "nv" driver that shipped with XFree86 version 4.0.1 did not recognize the GeForce2 family and the Quadro2 MXR GPUs. This was fixed in XFree86 version 4.0.2. XFree86 can be retrieved from

These software packages may also be available through your Linux distributor.