Natty Beta: Xorg using excessive CPU? Try this.

For some reason, I was having massive spikes of my CPU which rendered my computer almost completely unusable.

Well, I filed Bug #751477 on Launchpad, and got a response that I didn’t like; basically saying that it wasn’t Xorg’s problem.  I fumed and grumbled for a few minutes, then decided to actually investigate the problem.

I went to their wiki, which wasn’t much help, but then I decided to look into my nVidia card.  Well, it turns out that using the binary drivers can cause the exact same problem.  So, I installed the nouveau drivers (after accidentally uninstalling the nVidia ones, and some other issues), enabled them, and rebooted.

Well, that actually took care of the problem.


  1. Install Nouveau drivers (through Synaptic or Software Center)
  2. Open the “Additional Drivers” dialogue
  3. Enable the “Experimental 3D support for NVIDIA cards” option (see picture below)
  4. Reboot.


Additional Drivers dialogue.

It’s now working; hopefully the binary drivers will be working when Natty releases.