Solve video tearing on Intel + Ubuntu (Unity and GNOME Shell)

Video tearing has been the bane of Linux’s existence on desktops and laptops, but the situation is vastly better than what it was a year ago. This post is related to fixing issues with the Intel HD3000 and HD4000 (Sandy Bridge and Ivy Bridge) series of graphics cards in Ubuntu. This is a clean fix that doesn’t involve any PPAs or experimental drivers, and has been tested on my HP Pavilion G4 running Ubuntu 12.04 on an Ivy Bridge i5.

Fixing video tearing on Unity –

  1. Install CompizConfig Settings Manager using sudo apt-get install compizconfig-settings-manager
  2. Open up the Settings Manager and navigate to the Workarounds section under the Utility heading.
  3. In the sidebar on the left, make sure workarounds are enabled. Next, check the settings for “Don’t wait for video sync” and “Force full screen redraws (buffer swap) on repaint”.
  4. Reboot

Fixing video tearing on GNOME Shell –

Set the value of the CLUTTER_PAINT environment variable in /etc/environment using –

echo CLUTTER_PAINT=disable-clipped-redraws:disable-culling >> /etc/environment

and reboot to enjoy tear-free video playback.

Credit for the info here goes to this thread.

16 thoughts on “Solve video tearing on Intel + Ubuntu (Unity and GNOME Shell)

      • Actually, I think my comment was made too soon. The problem appeared again after reboot. In fact, the problem comes and goes on its own free will with no apparent explanation. I set everything following this post but sometimes I turn on the computer and the videos run smoothly but when I reboot the videos start tearing again. Do you have any idea about what I might be doing wrong? Thanks

      • I’m afraid not, really dunno what could be causing tearing at random. Video tearing has always been constant for me (before the fix) and perfectly fine afterwards. Any specific formats/players on which it occurs?

  1. Thank you very much, finally fixed the screen tearing. I’ve been searching for a solution for an extremely long time, and thanks to this I have found the solution I needed. Thank you again.

  2. Pingback: Solve video tearing on Intel + Ubuntu (XFCE 4) | sn0v

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