MSI PE60 6QE with GTX960M

This is a guide to running Linux with the MSI PE60 6QE with GTX960M laptop.
This guide is intended to provide you details on how well this laptop works with Linux and which modules you need to configure. For details on how to actually install and configure the required modules have a look at our guides section for distribution specific instructions.

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Specifications

NameMSI PE60 6QE
ProcessorIntel Core i7 6700HQ
Screen15.6 inch
RAM8GB DDR4
HDD1TB 7200RPM
Optical DriveDVD Super Multi
GraphicsIntel Corporation Skylake Integrated Graphics + NVIDIA Corporation GM107M [GeForce GTX 960M]
NetworkIntel Corporation Wireless 3165

Linux Compatibility

DeviceCompatibilityComments
ProcessorYes-
ScreenYes-
HDDYes-
Optical DriveYes-
Graphics ChipSee below-
VGA OutNot tested-
HDMI Port Yes-
Mini display portNot tested-
Speaker SoundYes-
HDMI SoundYes-
Built-in MicrophoneYes-
Headphone JackYes-
Microphone JackNot Tested-
EthernetYes-
WirelessYes
BluetoothNot tested-
WWANn.a.-
Modemn.a.-
USBYes2xUSB 2.0,1xUSB 3.0
ESATAn.a.-
Firewiren.a.-
Card ReaderNot tested-
ExpressCard Slotn.a.-
Fingerprint Readern.a.-
WebcamYes-
Smart Card Readern.a.-
Docking Stationn.a.-
Touch PadSee below-
Track Pointn.a.-
Fingerprint Readern.a.-
Suspend/ResumeSee below-

Notes

To run ubuntu live disk (Kubuntu 16.04) needed to set acpi=off in the command. This can be done by pressing a key to get into the startup menu of the live disk and then pressing F6 from the live disk startup menu. Setup was done in legacy mode (no UEFI, alongside windows installed in legacy mode).

In Ubuntu, after installation, in order to get the touchpad working and suspend/resume and proper display drivers:
Install NVidia drivers 361. In Kubuntu/Ubuntu this can be done like:

sudo apt-get install nvidia-361

(Update February 2017: works with nvidia-375 which is also recommended on the NVidia page)

Edit the boot menu so that you remove acpi=off. See http://www.ostechnix.com/configure-grub-2-boot-loader-settings-ubuntu-16-04/ for how to do this. Change the GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX line.

Now after restart you should have touchpad and suspend/resume capabilities (I did).

WARNING: The reason it is working after the above fixes is that we have switched to using the nvidia graphics card. When using prime to switch back to the integrated display, we need to use acpi=off to get our GUI. In this situation the touchpad also does not work. So we are stuck permanently in nvidia mode and using extra battery. This applies to Kubuntu 16.04 which just came out so perhaps we will see a fix soon.

UPDATE: A BIOS update from mid April 2016 allows us to boot using the integrated graphics mode with touchpad working. But the system hangs when trying to run glxinfo or lshw or lspci. https://www.msi.com/Laptop/support/PE60-6QE.html#down-bios

UPDATE 2: Putting the command pci=nomsi into the linux command line allows us to use integrated graphics as well as the above commands (glxinfo or lshw or lspci). This is not entirely satisfactory of course but it works for now, and there no longer seem to be any show-stoppers. Note:: Does not seem to be working after all.

UPDATE 3: NVidia Cuda 8 seems to be working fine when installed from
https://developer.nvidia.com/cuda-release-candidate-download and running in Nvidia mode.

Summary

Most things seem to be working with some fixes listed above. The laptop is currently being explored.


Discussion

Ludovic Martin, 2017/03/07 22:06

Hi,

Here is what worked for me with Linux Mint 18.1 :
1. Set legacy boot mode in the BIOS
2. Boot from USB key in safe mode
3. Install Mint
4. Reboot with “nomodeset” option
5. Update distrib
4. Reboot with “nomodeset” option
5. Install latest provided kernel (4.8.0)
6. Reboot with “nomodeset” option
7. Via the device manager : install latest provided NVIDIA driver and the Intel Microcode
8. Reboot (no option needed)

Everything has been fine after the last reboot.

OLANGUENA AWONO Yann Stéphan, 2016/10/28 16:55

First, I'd like to thank you for your research and effort in contributing to this database.

It's truly beautiful and commendable endeavour.

The information on this page have truly helped me, and I'd like to eventually add my own little stone to this work of knowledge.

As it has been discovered by the writer of the MSI PE60-6QE entry on this website, for some reason, the integrated dGPU (NVIDIA 960m) overshadows the Intel 530 iGPU, which functions much more gracefully with the Linux kernel.

This can cause problems during installation, particularly when one needs for example to temporarily suspend the laptop state in order to “unfroze” the embedded SSD, so that they can wipe it with the 'hdparm' utility through the “Secure Erase” functions that SSDs usually support nowadays.

This is done to clean definitely any traces of Windows, that comes pre-installed with these laptop, prior to installing a Linux system.

I have struggled with the procedure because some bug with the kernel's 'nouveau' driver prevents the laptop to go to sleep, which is needed to unlock the Secure Erase function of the SSD.

Even when using the iGPU thanks to the “pci=nomsi” kernel parameter provided here, the loaded nouveau module will still interfere and put the laptop into “unwakable” state if one tries to suspend it.

In order to be able to suspend on this laptop even from a live system, one needs, in addition to the “pci=nomsi” parameter, blacklist nouveau by adding “modprobe.blacklist=nouveau”.

This way, we can definitely get NVIDIA hardware out of the equation and the laptop will be able to suspend and gracefully come back from sleep even on a Live system.

I hope this can be useful to someone.

Best regards,

O.Yann

S

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msi_pe60_prestige_pe60_6qe_gtx960m.txt · Last modified: 2017/03/01 12:30 by damienjadeduff
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