Axel wrote :
""""Then I realized that I had gold as the default linker. Before carrying out the next kernel update I put the bsd ld back as default (simple symlink rewiring), ran the update - now the nvidia modules were linked using bsd ld -, bravely rebooted into the new kernel and was greeted by a friendly gdm!
Can anyone confirm?""""
YES! You cracked it! I can confirm that the problem seems to be related to the "gold" linker. Since the Maverick upgrade I had kernel oops every single time XOrg tried to start. The nvidia moduleee loadeds fine, it seems to be only when the X server loads does the OOPS occiur.
Following from what you said, I changed the ld soft link to /usr/bin/ld.bfd , reinstalled the nVidia driver, and hey presto it works!
Now, the question has to be... what is the "gold" linker doing to the nVidia source that "ld.bfd" is not?