Is any replacement for Device Manager for Linux

Discussion in 'all things UNIX' started by roger_m, Mar 19, 2016.

  1. roger_m

    roger_m Registered Member

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    I have very little experience with Linux, but am trying out a few distros at the moment. Anyway, what I want to know is, how can you tell if there are any missing device drivers. In Windows, you can open Device Manager and see if there are any missing drivers, or devices with errors. But, it would seem there is no way to do this in Linux.

    I know there are programs that will list all the devices your computer has. But I don't want a hardware overview. I want to be able to see if there any missing device drivers.
     
  2. oliverjia

    oliverjia Registered Member

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  3. The Red Moon

    The Red Moon Registered Member

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    Hello roger,
    I have been using linux for about a year now and as far as im aware the linux kernel itself is responsible for keeping drivers updated.
    In "software and updates" for whichever distro you use there is a driver section but it has always reported that there are no proprietry drivers in use.

    not certain this will help you but somebody else with more linux knowledge may chime in and guide you.
     
  4. roger_m

    roger_m Registered Member

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    @oliverjia Thanks for the link, but there is that has the same functionality as Device Manager. I don't want just a device overview, I want to see the drivers used.

    @The Red Moon That is the case, and I'm not too worried about driver updates. But, I do want to be able to see if there are any devices that Linux was unable to find and install drivers for.
     
  5. zapjb

    zapjb Registered Member

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    Good specific question roger m. I want to know also. Device Manager in windows is really helpful at a glance.
     
  6. inka

    inka Registered Member

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    "device drivers" is MSWindows parlance. In linux, they're typically referred to as "kernel modules".
    Many modules (for common, widespread devices) are compiled into the kernel.
    Any additional "external" modules may be loaded during boot (init), or during a session you may choose to manually
    load a given module, on-demand, via the modprobe command.
    No. The kernel has no concept of "updating".

    A gui program called "hardinfo" is available for many distros.
    It's the closest thing to DeviceManager I can think of (treeview, view device details).
    The really nitty-gritty, extensive, details of each driver are output by the "lsmod" terminal command.
    Some distros, in their "ControlCenter" gui, provide a wrapper displaying lsmod output to a gui pane.
     
  7. roger_m

    roger_m Registered Member

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    @inka Thanks for the information. I have previously tried HardInfo, but it is not really what I am looking for, as I don't think it will be able to show which devices (if any) are missing drivers. I don't really even need to know anything at all about devices which have drivers installed, I only need to see the ones with missing drivers.
     
  8. amarildojr

    amarildojr Registered Member

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    Do you suspect a piece of hardware isn't working? Because that would be the main symptom of missing drivers. But remember, Linux runs (literally) on anything, it's veeeeeeeeery unlikely that your device has no driver.
     
  9. inka

    inka Registered Member

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    You'll find detailed info logged to /var/log/ syslog and kern.log
    readable in any text editor. While viewing the file, search for "missing" or "fail" or "error" if you don't want to scroll through the entire log.
     
  10. roger_m

    roger_m Registered Member

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    @amarildojr Aside from the laptop's brightness functions keys not working, everything else seems to be working just fine. If that is the case, then it would seem that Linux has better included driver support than Microsoft has for Windows. However, I really would like to check and see for myself if all the drivers are there.

    @inka Thanks, I'll try that.
     
  11. amarildojr

    amarildojr Registered Member

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    Just adding: if you use systemd you could do something like:
    Code:
    journalctl | grep failed
    or
    Code:
    journalctl | grep missing
    or
    Code:
    journalctl | grep error
     
  12. vasa1

    vasa1 Registered Member

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    I wonder if comparing the outputs of lsusb and lspci -k (at least on *buntu) would provide the necessary information (though in a somewhat tedious manner).
     
  13. MisterB

    MisterB Registered Member

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    That is a common problem problem with Intel Graphics chipsets and is easily fixed. It requires adding one configuration file for the backlight.

    Almost all the driver issues I've had with Linux have been with Nvidia GPUs. ATI has been no problem at all and Intel just has the brightness control issue.
     
  14. The Red Moon

    The Red Moon Registered Member

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    sudo lsmod via the terminal will give driver output.
    There is also jockey-gtk which may help.
    gnome-device-manager is also another one.
     
  15. joncr

    joncr Registered Member

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    I'm not aware of anything in Linux that provides the capability the OP has asked about: List everything requiring a driver, show the drivers used, indicate when a needed driver is missing, and enable searching for it and installation.

    Now, since Linux does things differently than Windows, if a component is supported by Linux, it's very close to a certainty that a user's distribution of choice will install that driver and that the kernel will load the appropriate module. The exceptions are a very few closed components for which no open source drivers have been, or can be, made available.

    Linux users do not have to -- and should not -- troll the net looking for drivers.

    It's still a good idea for a handy tool, though.
     
  16. roger_m

    roger_m Registered Member

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    Thanks everyone for the suggestions. It seems the only program whcih will easily give me the information I want is Gnome Device Manager. But, when I installed it a few days ago, I could not get it to launch.

    I just need to accept that Linux will take care of everything itself, unlike Windows. While I have no plans to ever ditch Windows, as I love Windows 10, I have been playing with Linux Mint and I like it a lot.
     
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