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I'm running 64-bit Ubuntu and completely new to linux. I'm using a game development library that requires OpenGL 2.0 and am having issues running it. A mod on that library's forum asked if my machine support OpenGL 2.0, and I have no idea how to figure this out. Any ideas?

Thanks!

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First find out what graphics card you have then search google. –  Kyle Feb 11 '11 at 17:06
    
Brand new to linux (as in, this morning). What system menus will show me what kind of card I have? –  Pam Feb 11 '11 at 17:13
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3 Answers

I am afraid you'll have to open the command line of your first day of Linux (don't worry, happened to me too). Applications -> Accessories -> Terminal. Type lspci and hit Enter. This lists everything connected over PCI or PCI express, including the video card. Read through the list until you have seen something about ATI or nVidia or one of Intel's models.

Then go to Wikipedia's comparison tables for video cards to find out the OpenGL version your card supports.

Intel Graphic cards

nVidia graphic cards - here you have to click to the page for the correct generation, e. g. GeForce 7 series if you have a GeForce 7600 GS

ATI grapchic cards

Remember that these only say which version the hardware supports. To be able to run OpenGL libraries, you also need a driver which supports them. There are multiple video drivers for each chip generation for Linux. Ubuntu comes with open source versions, which are not bad, but generally a step behind the proprietary drivers released by the graphic card manufacturers (which are often referred to as binary drivers or proprietary drivers). If your check turns up that your hardware supports OpenGL 2.0 (which most do), you can try the proprietary drivers. They are called nvidia-current for nvidia and fglrx for ATI. For Intel, there are only open source drivers.

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Use dmidecode to find out the name of your graphics card. then find information about the version of opengl in google.

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The first tool you use should probably be lspci, but if you are interested in more details is you can use lshw.

Example from my laptop:

prompt>lspci | grep VGA
00:02.0 VGA compatible controller: Intel Corporation Core Processor Integrated Graphics Controller (rev 02)
01:00.0 VGA compatible controller: nVidia Corporation Device 0df0 (rev a1)
prompt>

and the corresponding extract from lshw:

    *-pci:0
         description: PCI bridge
         product: Core Processor PCI Express x16 Root Port
         vendor: Intel Corporation
         physical id: 1
         bus info: pci@0000:00:01.0
         version: 02
         width: 32 bits
         clock: 33MHz
         capabilities: pci pm msi pciexpress normal_decode bus_master cap_list
         configuration: driver=pcieport
         resources: irq:42 ioport:2000(size=4096) memory:fb000000-fbffffff ioport:f0000000(size=167772160)
       *-display
            description: VGA compatible controller
            product: nVidia Corporation
            vendor: nVidia Corporation
            physical id: 0
            bus info: pci@0000:01:00.0
            version: a1
            width: 64 bits
            clock: 33MHz
            capabilities: pm msi pciexpress vga_controller bus_master cap_list
            configuration: driver=nouveau latency=0
            resources: irq:16 memory:fb000000-fbffffff memory:f0000000-f7ffffff memory:f8000000-f9ffffff ioport:2000(size=128)
    *-display
         description: VGA compatible controller
         product: Core Processor Integrated Graphics Controller
         vendor: Intel Corporation
         physical id: 2
         bus info: pci@0000:00:02.0
         version: 02
         width: 64 bits
         clock: 33MHz
         capabilities: msi pm vga_controller bus_master cap_list rom
         configuration: driver=i915 latency=0
         resources: irq:47 memory:fd000000-fd3fffff memory:d0000000-dfffffff ioport:1800(size=8)
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