As an intermediate Linux user, I decided to try Arch Linux (having only experience with Ubuntu before, 3 years ago), and everything was going well until the part where I tried to get a graphical environment set-up.
I have an NVidia GTX660 card, and decided to go with Nouveau drivers. I also installed the Plasma 5 DE (using the plasma group from the pacman repositories).
The thing is, it's practically unusable; my system is bound to freeze up completely after 5 minutes tops and I have to use the REISUB keys or press the reset button on my PC. I can move my mouse cursor but that's it.
I followed all the Arch Wiki pages carefully and have a fairly standard installation, I didn't do much special (except maybe go with btrfs over ext4) or mess with configuration files.
I've looked at the log files using
journalctl -xe -b-1 -p0..4 to see what happened before doing the REISUB trick. It consistently contains nouveau entries in red at the end, such as
PGRAPH engine fault. There are quite a lot of warnings from various KDE apps and the QT libraries too.
My question is, what can I do to make my system more stable? Looking around on the internet, it doesn't seem common that Nouveau is doing that badly for anyone.
My primary options seem to be:
- To install the proprietary drivers, which I would like to avoid since I don't need any fancy 3D support, and I read is against the Linux spirit (my intention is to get proficient in this platform)
- Use a less graphically intensive DE, I have tried most of them and xfce4 or lxde/lxqt feel a lot more stable for example. However, in my opinion the design looks pretty old-fashioned in those and I really want a modern looking DE. I don't like the UX in Gnome.