Installing AMD Catalyst on Ubuntu for Enhanced Graphics Performance

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Installing AMD Catalyst on Ubuntu for Enhanced Graphics Performance

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Open-source Driver vs Proprietary Driver
  3. Bugs and Fixes
  4. Determining Graphics Cards
  5. Download and Extract the Driver
  6. Updating and Upgrading Linux
  7. Installing Required Packages
  8. Building Kernel Modules
  9. Running ATI Config
  10. Reboot and Catalyst Control Center

Installing AMD Catalyst on Linux

Welcome everyone to the updated version of my original AMD Catalyst install guide. In this article, I will walk you through the process of installing the latest AMD Catalyst driver on your Linux system. Although the process has changed a bit since the last time I covered it, I will provide you with the necessary information and tips to make the installation smooth and hassle-free. So let's dive right in!

1. Introduction

Before we begin, let's understand the difference between the open-source driver and the proprietary driver. By default, most Linux distributions, including Ubuntu, ship with an open-source driver that supports 3D rendering and other basic functionalities. However, if you require advanced features like OpenCL, you'll need to install the proprietary AMD Catalyst driver.

2. Open-source Driver vs Proprietary Driver

The open-source driver works well for most users and is supported by the community. It does have some limitations, such as not supporting OpenCL. On the other HAND, the proprietary driver offers better performance and advanced features but may require additional configuration. It's important to note that installing the proprietary driver is not mandatory, and you can stick with the open-source driver if it meets your needs.

Pros of Open-source Driver:

  • Supported by the community
  • Works out of the box on most Linux distributions
  • Does not require additional installation or configuration

Cons of Open-source Driver:

  • Doesn't support advanced features like OpenCL
  • Performance may not be as optimized as the proprietary driver

Pros of Proprietary Driver:

  • Better performance and optimizations
  • Supports advanced features like OpenCL
  • Offers a Catalyst Control Center for easy configuration

Cons of Proprietary Driver:

  • Requires additional installation and configuration steps
  • Some bugs and compatibility issues may arise

3. Bugs and Fixes

Before diving into the installation process, it's important to be aware of a few bugs and their respective fixes. I will Outline them briefly below:

  • HDMI Audio Bug: If you're using HDMI audio with the open-source driver, you may encounter a bug. To fix this, open a terminal and enter the command sudo gedit /etc/default/grub. Add the line and save the file. Then, run sudo update-grub and restart your computer to fix the audio issue.

  • Dual Adapters Bug: If you have dual graphics adapters, you may see a "screen not supported" error when running ati-config. To resolve this, install the 14.6 drivers first, then install the 14.9 drivers. This will allow the configuration to work with your dual adapters.

  • 6000 Series Compatibility: The release notes mention support for the 6000 series, but some users may encounter errors stating that their graphics are not supported. In such cases, check if the repository for additional drivers is up-to-date and compatible with your distribution. You can use the repository and click "Apply Changes" to install the drivers.

  • Loki XML Bug: During the installation process, you may encounter an error stating that "Loki XML" cannot be found. To work around this issue, follow the workaround provided in the description of the video Tutorial.

4. Determining Graphics Cards

Before proceeding with the installation, it's essential to determine the graphics cards you have on your system. Open a terminal and enter the command lspci | grep VGA. This command will display a list of your graphics cards. Take note of the model numbers, as they will be required during the installation process.

It's worth mentioning that the installation process may vary slightly depending on your Linux distribution. However, I will provide general instructions that can be adapted to your specific distribution.

5. Download and Extract the Driver

Now that you have determined your graphics card model, it's time to download and extract the AMD Catalyst driver. Visit the official AMD website and navigate to the download section. Look for the appropriate driver for your graphics card model and download the Package.

Once downloaded, navigate to the Downloads folder in your terminal, where the driver package is stored. Extract the package using the appropriate command. For example, if the package is a zip file, use the command unzip <> to extract its contents.

6. Updating and Upgrading Linux

Before proceeding with the installation, ensure that your Linux system is up to date. Open a terminal and enter the following commands:

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get dist-upgrade

These commands will update your system and install any available updates. It's essential to have the latest updates to ensure compatibility and stability during the installation process.

7. Installing Required Packages

To successfully install the AMD Catalyst driver, you need to install a set of required packages. The specific packages may differ depending on your Linux distribution. Refer to the release notes provided by AMD for the recommended packages.

Open a terminal and enter the appropriate command to install the required packages. For example:

sudo apt-get install package1 package2 package3

Make sure to install all the necessary packages to avoid any dependency issues.

8. Building Kernel Modules

Next, we need to build the kernel modules for the AMD Catalyst driver. This process ensures that the driver is compatible with your Linux kernel.

To build the kernel modules, navigate to the extracted driver folder in the terminal and run the following command:

sudo ./ --buildpkg Ubuntu/trusty

Replace "Ubuntu/trusty" with the appropriate distribution and version for your system. Follow the prompts and wait for the process to complete.

9. Running ATI Config

After the kernel modules have been built, it's time to run the ATI config to configure your Xorg settings. Enter the following command in the terminal:

sudo aticonfig --initial

If you have multiple graphics devices, use the command:

sudo aticonfig --adapter=all --initial

This command will configure your Xorg settings. Note that if you have dual adapters, this step may fail. In such cases, refer back to the bug fix Mentioned earlier and install the 14.6 drivers before proceeding with the 14.9 drivers.

10. Reboot and Catalyst Control Center

Now that everything is set up, it's time to reboot your system. After rebooting, open a terminal and run the following command to launch the Catalyst Control Center:

sudo amdcccle

This command will open the Catalyst Control Center, where you can configure various settings related to your AMD graphics card.

Congratulations! You have successfully installed the AMD Catalyst driver on your Linux system. Enjoy enhanced performance and advanced features provided by the proprietary driver.


In this article, we covered the process of installing the AMD Catalyst driver on Linux systems. We discussed the differences between the open-source and proprietary drivers, common bugs, and their fixes. We also provided step-by-step instructions on determining your graphics cards, downloading and extracting the driver, updating your system, installing required packages, building kernel modules, running the ATI config, and launching the Catalyst Control Center.

Remember to proceed with caution and follow the instructions carefully to ensure a smooth installation. If you encounter any issues or have further questions, feel free to ask in the comments. Happy gaming and enjoy the full capabilities of your AMD graphics card on Linux!


  • Understand the differences between the open-source and proprietary AMD Catalyst drivers.
  • Learn about common bugs and their fixes during the installation process.
  • Determine your graphics card model using the terminal.
  • Download and extract the AMD Catalyst driver package.
  • Update and upgrade your Linux system to ensure compatibility.
  • Install the required packages for a successful installation.
  • Build the necessary kernel modules for the driver.
  • Configure Xorg settings using the ATI config command.
  • Reboot your system and launch the Catalyst Control Center for advanced configuration options.


Q: Can I use the open-source driver instead of the proprietary driver? A: Yes, the open-source driver is suitable for most users and provides basic functionalities. However, if you require advanced features or better performance, it is recommended to install the proprietary AMD Catalyst driver.

Q: How can I fix the HDMI audio bug with the open-source driver? A: To fix the HDMI audio bug, open a terminal and follow the provided command in the article. Adding to the grub file and updating it should resolve the audio issue.

Q: I have dual graphics adapters, and the ATI config fails. What should I do? A: If you encounter issues with the ATI config while using dual graphics adapters, try installing the 14.6 drivers first. Follow the instructions in the bug fixes section before proceeding with the 14.9 drivers.

Q: Are the additional drivers in the repository up-to-date for my specific distribution? A: The additional drivers repository may not always be up-to-date. It's recommended to check if the repository supports your distribution and if it has the latest drivers. If not, follow the alternative installation method mentioned in the article.

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