Linux Kernel Set To Expose Hidden NVIDIA HDA Controllers, Helping Laptop Users

Written by Michael Larabel in Nouveau on 13 June 2019 at 07:02 AM EDT. 25 Comments
If you are a user of the open-source NVIDIA "Nouveau" Linux graphics driver on laptops and have found no audio support, that is likely to be fixed by an upcoming kernel patch that should make its way to the Linux 5.3 kernel.

Modern NVIDIA GPUs have an onboard HDA controller but primarily in the case of recent notebooks, they tend to be hidden -- depending upon a bit in the GPU configuration space it's possible to "hide" the controller. When it's hidden, the controller won't get initialized and you'll lose out on functionality like HDMI audio.

Two years ago in NVIDIA's own forums one of their developers confirmed the behavior and the bit that must be set for exposing the controller should it be hidden.

There was a patch last year to set the bit as part of the Linux PCI quirk code but technical issues held up the patch at that time. But now with those dependencies addressed, it's looking safe like the patch could finally be mainlined. As this is in the kernel's common PCI quirks code as opposed to Nouveau DRM proper, this could also help those using the proprietary NVIDIA driver as well with laptops where the controller is hidden.

The patch currently can be found on the Nouveau mailing list for review.
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Michael Larabel is the principal author of and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 20,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter, LinkedIn, or contacted via

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