Some ways to fix tearing on Linux Mint XFCE + Intel HD Graphics

So I have a VAIO laptop with an i3-370M (1st gen) and Intel HD Graphics. This is the 1st generation of Intel HD Graphics.

Ever since I installed Linux Mint 17.2 XFCE, I’ve been loving it. It’s as fast as me, keeping up with everything well.

But that’s not the focus of this post.

The first thing I did after installing Mint is removing VLC and installing mpv. But it seems that everywhere, there is the problem of “screen tearing” (see the Wikipedia article for what it is, basically invisible horizontal lines where the top part and the bottom part of it is weird and not continuous between each other, as if the object being displayed, be it an object in a video or a webpage, is “torn”). And it’s annoying.

So after a few hours of hunting down Arch Wiki forums and wiki articles and Linux mint forums, I think I’ve found a proper fix at last. But in case that does not work, there are some other suggestions.

1. Primary Way:

This is for Linux Kernel 3.19.0-pf3 (Yes, I run the pf-kernel).

a) Go to “Window manager Tweaks”. (Open the “Start” menu and start typing it).

b) Go to the Compositor Tab.

c) Make sure “Synchronize drawing to Vertical Blank” is enabled, as below:


d) And reboot.

If this doesn’t work:

Alternate Ways:

  1. Disable the “Enable Display Compositing” altogether. This is what worked for me on the default 3.16 kernel that comes with Mint. If that doesn’t work:
  2. Use the older uxa instead of sna as the Hardware Acceleration method for your Graphics driver. How to do that is described in this guide. Please note that this can be thought of as a last resort.

Hope the tearing goes away with these!