I'm trying to connect my laptop (Acer Aspire 5315 having Ubuntu 13.04) to Samsung LCD HDTV. I connected the VGA cable; one end on my laptop VGA socket & the other on the TV VGA socket. But when I boot my laptop, nothing appears on the TV as well as laptop. On laptop directly the login screen appears.

My intention is to get the display on the TV. For this I had googled & came across really same question that I mentioned above. But those threads couldn't resolve my issue.

I've a few doubts.

1) While googling, I came across a solution that says to install NVIDIA graphics driver. Now whether this will work for me as the below command shows that my graphic card is not NVIDIA?

ravbholua@ravbholua-Aspire-5315:~$ lspci | grep VGA
00:02.0 VGA compatible controller: Intel Corporation Mobile GM965/GL960 Integrated Graphics Controller (primary) (rev 03)

In other words, will NVIDIA graphic driver work for all systems irrespective of the graphic card the system has?

2) In google, I found many had given the solution to install the NVIDIA driver via 'Additional drivers' tab as shown below. But in my system there isn't any driver listed!!

enter image description here

So, I will try to install via CLI. I will follow the Dedoimedo site also for this. (I'm assuming the the NVIDIA driver will work for me)


I tried changing the settings on the display application under System Settings but I couldn't get the display on the LCD TV. I checked the sources available on the TV but the 'PC' option was disabled.


This edit is w.r.t. the answer posted by @mo_roodi.

I installed the Intel Linux Graphics Drivers from the link he had in his answer. I hope I did it rightly. I installed the Linux Graphic Installer. Then I opened the application & a window popped up named "Intel Driver Manager". Then it upgraded the system. Below I answer to his questions:

1) Yes everything is fine on the laptop screen.

2) I haven't connected ever my laptop to any external display. This is the 1st time I'm connecting to SAMSUNG LCD TV.

3) I haven't connected the TV via PC connection with any external device.

4) I can't say regarding the dual-head capability of the graphics card.

5) I can't say yet whether the VGA cable is O.K. or not. But I did something to test it. Using a multimeter, I checked the continuity. It's a 15 pin VGA connector. I put one probe on one of the pins & the other on the external surrounding metal (trapezoidal in shape) of the same plug (connecter). And it showed continuity!! Does it seem to be a problem? This means the pin & the outer metal boundary is short. Also I found that a pin on one plug was in "continuity" with the outer boundary of the other plug at other end of the cable. Is it really like this!! In RCA cable, it means defective cable. Still, I will try to check this cable at some other place.

I ran

$ xrandr -q 
Screen 0: minimum 320 x 200, current 1024 x 768, maximum 8192 x 8192
LVDS1 connected 1024x768+0+0 (normal left inverted right x axis y axis) 331mm x 207mm
   1280x800       60.0 +
   1024x768       60.0* 
   800x600        60.3     56.2  
   640x480        59.9  
VGA1 connected 1024x768+0+0 (normal left inverted right x axis y axis) 0mm x 0mm
   1024x768       60.0* 
   800x600        60.3     56.2  
   848x480        60.0  
   640x480        59.9  
TV1 unknown connection (normal left inverted right x axis y axis)
   848x480        59.9 +
   640x480        59.9 +
   1024x768       59.9  
   800x600        59.9

One point I would like to share. After connecting my laptop with TV via cable, my TV has the PC input option still disabled. Is it that the option should have become enabled after connecting the cable & booting the laptop?

I had checked a youtube video. In that the guy showed how he connected his TV with laptop. There after connecting via cable & booting, he clicked on 'source' button on TV & selected 'PC input'. He was able to select that because it was enabled for him. Still he wasn't getting the display on TV. Then he change the resolution under 'display' menu in his laptop & then it worked.


Just attaching below the photo of my TV showing that only 1st 2 options (TV & AV) are enabled. 'PC' input is disabled. enter image description here

  • also once connected, it's analogic signal so you may need to make some adjustement on your TV, but first try to output on another screen and if still not working with another cable.
    – Kiwy
    Feb 13, 2014 at 16:23

3 Answers 3


(I can't add a comment.)

Your computer does not have any Nvidia hardware, so no Nvidia drivers of any sort, proprietary, graphical, command line or otherwise, will do anything of use for you (and in fact may break it horribly if the driver confuses the kernel).

Instead look at the setup screen about attached monitors; the TV should hopefully show up there. (It might be located from the menu in some manner like "Preferences"/"Display", or maybe try searching for "monitor" or "display" from the Unity dash.)

  • Yes, when TV is attached to laptop via VGA cable, the display menu shows 2 : one for laptop and other as 'unknown'. Earlier I tried to change something there (like resolution etc) but didn't work. Now again I'm trying. Can you please suggest me what can I do here?
    – Ravi
    Feb 9, 2014 at 8:29
  • I've added an edit in my Q. You can please have a look.
    – Ravi
    Feb 9, 2014 at 11:35

You might want to try installing the Intel Linux Graphics Drivers from here. Intel make keeping the linux drivers up-to-date easier.

Once you've got the drivers installed there are few things to try.

  1. I'm assuming everything is working on the laptop screen fine. This means that the graphics card itself is probably OK.
  2. Does the laptop work happily with another external display connected?
  3. Does the TV work happily with other devices connected via the PC connection?
  4. It might be that the graphics card in the laptop doesn't have dual-head capabilities. This means that it can only drive a single display at once (I have to admit this is unlikely but it's a possibility).
  5. As mentioned in another post are you sure the cable is OK?

Have you tried xrandr? Plug the laptop into the TV and try:

xrandr -q 

That should at least tell you what the laptop thinks is connected. Once you've got that xrandr gives you various commands to setup secondary displays. Details of the other xrandr commands to try are detailed here.

  • please see my edit in the Q & guide.
    – Ravi
    Feb 13, 2014 at 9:14
  • 1
    @Ravi: Looking at the xrandr output it looks like it has actually detected the display and it's worked out what resolutions it can support using EDID. Can you try running xrandr --output VGA1 --mode 0 --right-of LVDS1 and let me give me the output from that please. If all works the TV should be setup as a second screen to the right of the laptop display. As for why the TV isn't enabling the PC source option this could do with the fact that the laptop isn't sending data signals along the VGA cable yet. Try setting the source after you run the xrandr command given in this comment.
    – Mo D
    Feb 13, 2014 at 9:40
  • Just as an aside Phoronix has a good getting started guide for xrandr which might give you might find helpful: phoronix.com/scan.php?page=article&item=927&num=1
    – Mo D
    Feb 13, 2014 at 9:45
  • I ran $ xrandr --output VGA1 --mode 0 --right-of LVDS1 . The output is xrandr: cannot find mode 0 Please suggest what next I should do?
    – Ravi
    Feb 13, 2014 at 12:23
  • 1
    Try: xrandr --output VGA1 --auto
    – Mo D
    Feb 13, 2014 at 13:26

The connection has nothing to do with the driver, it is a hardware problem.

If your TV has VGA in, it should be enough to connect it to the PC, and set the notebook up to use both screens (there should be a key marked to do that, depending on hardware/distribution this should work; or go to the dialog in your desktop environment to configure screens).

Some things to watch out for: Make sure the cables are OK (one cable at work didn't work, one of the pins was bent...), and firmly seated. Probably the TV has to select computer input somehow. Check the TV's manual (Yes, I know the manual is the geeks very last resort. But these are desperate times...).

BTW, I've got a ViewSonic screen with a VGA cable with two equal connectors and no markings. But it works only in one direction (?!). (It works, so why bother. Just the trivia of the day.)

  • You have made a good point. My TV is not able to enable the computer input. After connecting both laptop & TV with the VGA cable (its a cheap & local cable), when I select source button on my TV remote to get the options of the available input sources, it can't find computer. The PC input option in source menu of TV is disabled. I checked a youtube video. There I saw what the guy was showing was that after connecting the VGA cable, he pressed source button & selected PC input. So, his option of PC inpt was active but not mine. Does it seem the issue is with VGA cable?
    – Ravi
    Feb 12, 2014 at 12:26
  • It's probably some featured enabled in the LCD TV setting that is making it unable to select the PC input as a source. Try disabling some of the settings (esp. if you have changed something from the TV defaults), and try again with the PC Input. The TV guide should list these cases in the troubleshooting section.
    – aularon
    Feb 12, 2014 at 15:18

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