Is a Login Loop in a VM Considered a Bug?

Asked by Ian Mallett

On a fresh install of Ubuntu 15.04 in VirtualBox 4.3.28, installing `nvidia-346` will produce a login loop. The host machine has a GTX 580M.

The motivation for installing nvidia-346 in a VM at all is since the package also installs development headers/libraries that are useful for testing builds (if not running them).

On the one hand, the virtual machine doesn't really have a real GPU attached, but on the other hand, VirtualBox should be abstracting the host GPU in some reasonable way. I personally feel like the Right Thing is for the driver to detect that the "GPU" exposed by VirtualBox to the OS does not match an NVIDIA GPU, and then fall back to nouveau.

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Ubuntu nvidia-graphics-drivers-346 Edit question
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actionparsnip (andrew-woodhead666) said :
#1

Are you planning to run any games in Virtualbox?
Did you install the guest additions?

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Ian Mallett (0-ian-a) said :
#2

Games, no--although it would be nice to be able to run GL programs built using the NVIDIA libraries (I am a developer).

Guest additions: yes.

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actionparsnip (andrew-woodhead666) said :
#3

You will get enough 3D with the guest additions. The hardware is not the GPU in the host. If you run:

sudo lshw -C display

You will see a Virtualbox based video chip, not an Nvidia. You don't need the Nvidia driver

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Ian Mallett (0-ian-a) said :
#4

As I said, I am aware that VirtualBox abstracts the GPU. As for the necessity of installing: "The motivation for installing nvidia-346 in a VM at all is since the package also installs development headers/libraries that are useful for testing builds (if not running them)."

Again, my question is this: *Shouldn't the nvidia-346 package gracefully fail in the absence of a NVIDIA GPU, instead of making the system unusable? As I suggested, maybe fall back to nouveau?*

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actionparsnip (andrew-woodhead666) said :
#5

Not an unreasonable assumption

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Manfred Hampl (m-hampl) said :
#6

Installing an additional package for hardware that is not active should not cause problems - at least if the additional programs are not run.

So what puzzles me is:
Why are there any NVidia programs running at logon, that they would then cause falling back to the login screen (at least that is how I interpret your text "login loop").
Is there an xorg.conf file on your system that tells the system to use the NVidia driver instead of the vbox video driver?
Does adding nomodeset or other parameters to the boot command help?
Can you try blacklisting the NVidia driver?
Does ctrl-alt-F1 open a virtual console?

Note - also the nouveau driver is not the right one inside virtualbox, it should use the vboxvideo driver.

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Ian Mallett (0-ian-a) said :
#7

The specific behavior is:
1: boot
2: get login screen
3: type password
4: cleared screen, pause, black screen, pause
5: goto 2

After installing the drivers, `locate xorg.conf`produces only a directory `/usr/share/X11/xorg.conf.d/`. In particular, there is nothing in `/etc/X11/*`.

Using `nomodeset` (i.e., changing `quiet splash $vt_handoff` to `quiet splash nomodeset`) appears to have no effect. I don't know what else might help.

CTRL+ALT+F1 does indeed open a TTY; this is how I repaired the system.

vboxvideo vs. nouveau, noted; thanks.

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Manfred Hampl (m-hampl) said :
#8

Is there anything in the system logs that might indicate what is going wrong?

Can you help with this problem?

Provide an answer of your own, or ask Ian Mallett for more information if necessary.

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