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Debugging Chromium and Nvidia Errors in Ubuntu

Ubuntu 12

In this article, we will walk through the process of debugging Chromium and Nvidia errors in Ubuntu. Specifically, we will focus on the “libva error: vaGetDriverNameByIndex() failed with unknown libva error” issue that users may encounter while using Chromium on Ubuntu 20.10.

Quick Answer

Debugging Chromium and Nvidia errors in Ubuntu involves checking for recent upgrades or snap refreshes, launching Chromium from the terminal to view error messages, checking the VA-API version and driver, verifying GPU configuration, and considering potential solutions such as disabling GPU acceleration, checking the Snapcraft forum, and reverting the Chromium snap. If none of these steps work, further investigation through system logs may be necessary.

Understanding the Issue

Before we dive into the debugging process, let’s understand the issue at hand. The error message indicates a problem with the libva library and GPU initialization. This typically occurs when Chromium is unable to interact properly with the Nvidia driver on your system.

Checking for Recent Upgrades or Snap Refreshes

Firstly, it’s essential to check if any recent upgrades or snap refreshes might have caused the issue. If you recently updated your system or the Chromium snap, it could be the root cause of the problem.

Launching Chromium from Terminal

To get more information about the error, launch Chromium from the terminal using the chromium command. The terminal will display any error messages associated with the launch, providing more insights into the problem.

Checking VA-API Version and Driver

Next, run the vainfo command in the terminal. This command checks the VA-API (Video Acceleration API) version and the driver being used. If there’s an issue with the driver, the output will show that the driver failed to open.

Verifying GPU Configuration

Use the nvidia-debugdump -l command to verify your GPU configuration. This command lists all NVIDIA devices detected by the system. If the output shows an unexpected GPU or if your primary GPU isn’t listed, it could be the source of the issue.

Potential Solutions

If the issue persists after the above steps, consider the following solutions:

Disabling GPU Acceleration

One potential solution is to disable GPU acceleration by launching Chromium with the --disable-gpu flag. This flag prevents Chromium from using your GPU, which can resolve issues related to GPU drivers. Modify the shortcut that launches Chromium to include this flag.

Checking the Snapcraft Forum

The Snapcraft forum is a great resource for issues related to snaps. Other users may have encountered similar problems and found solutions.

Reverting the Chromium Snap

If the issue was introduced in a recent update, you could revert the Chromium snap to a previous version using the snap revert chromium command. This command reverts the snap to the previously installed version.

Further Investigation

If none of the above solutions work, you can further investigate the issue by searching for relevant error messages or logs. Use the journalctl command to access system logs and look for any additional error codes or messages that might provide more insights into the problem.

Conclusion

Debugging Chromium and Nvidia errors in Ubuntu can be a complex process, but with a systematic approach, you can identify the cause and find a solution. Remember to check for recent updates, launch Chromium from the terminal to see error messages, check your VA-API version and driver, verify your GPU configuration, and consider potential solutions such as disabling GPU acceleration, checking the Snapcraft forum, and reverting the Chromium snap. If all else fails, delve deeper into system logs for more clues. With patience and perseverance, you can resolve the issue and get Chromium running smoothly on your Ubuntu system.

How can I launch Chromium from the terminal in Ubuntu?

To launch Chromium from the terminal in Ubuntu, you can use the chromium command.

How can I check for recent upgrades or snap refreshes in Ubuntu?

To check for recent upgrades or snap refreshes in Ubuntu, you can use the apt list --upgradable command to see if there are any packages that can be upgraded. To check for snap refreshes, you can use the snap list --refresh command.

How do I modify the shortcut that launches Chromium to include the `–disable-gpu` flag?

To modify the shortcut that launches Chromium in Ubuntu, right-click on the Chromium shortcut and select "Properties." In the "Command" field, append --disable-gpu at the end of the command. Make sure to leave a space between the existing command and the --disable-gpu flag.

How can I access system logs in Ubuntu?

To access system logs in Ubuntu, you can use the journalctl command. For example, journalctl -xe displays the most recent system logs with any error messages or warnings.

How can I revert the Chromium snap to a previous version in Ubuntu?

To revert the Chromium snap to a previous version in Ubuntu, you can use the snap revert chromium command. This command will revert the snap to the previously installed version.

Where can I find additional help and support for snap-related issues?

If you need additional help and support for snap-related issues, you can visit the Snapcraft forum. The forum is a great resource where you can find answers to common questions and get assistance from other users and developers.

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