Linux box (Corei7 920, 12 Gb RAM, 1TB hdd, Nvidia GTX 460) running Ubuntu 12.04.

I'm enough of a noob that I've hit a wall of discouragement trying to install CUDA to take advantage of Cycles! This is the most helpful resource I've found so far, but it is super intimidating and I'm afraid I'll just be wasting hours and hours of time, and eventually fail.

Can someone confirm they've accomplished what I'm trying to do?

Can someone link me to some good tuts/lessons on Linux that will help me accomplish this task?

  • 2
    $\begingroup$ This is a somewhat borderline question as it doesn't really relate to Blender directly but can be helpful in the future nonetheless. It would be best to try going through the steps in the link you posted and ask followup questions here.. where you hit a dead end etc. Please be as specific as possible when describing any issues you encounter. I also doubt it can be condensed or simplified any more than that. $\endgroup$
    – iKlsR
    Sep 15, 2013 at 23:28
  • $\begingroup$ I personally never did that... I just installed the recommended Nvidia driver suggested in the Ubuntu's driver manager, and Cycles works fine (GTX560). $\endgroup$
    – Polosson
    Sep 16, 2013 at 22:31
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ The question is not asking about blender. (cuda installation), perhaps ask on Ubuntu's question page? $\endgroup$
    – ideasman42
    Sep 17, 2013 at 21:06

1 Answer 1


If you want to use CUDA for rendering with a downloaded Blender release, you do not need to install the CUDA toolkit. What you do need is (proprietary) NVidia drivers for your graphics card, any reasonably recent version will do.

Ubuntu and other linux distributions provide a way to do that, and you may already have them installed. If you don't you should for best Blender performance even when you don't use Cycles GPU rendering. If CUDA does not show up in User Preferences > System > Compute Device, you may need to install a newer NVidia graphics driver.

If you want to make your own Blender builds with CUDA support, you need to install the CUDA toolkit. To do that, download the CUDA toolkit 5.0 from:


And install with a command like this:

sudo sh cuda_5.0.35_linux_64_ubuntu11.10-1.run

It may ask you about installing drivers, but it's usually best to skip that part and only install the toolkit in the default location. The drivers will interfere with drivers that you installed through the package manager. You do not need to set any environment variables or make links like that tutorial, it's really this one command.


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