Installation notes ca.2007

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6/07 I'm upgrading from A31p to T42p and am going to document Linux installs. I previously had an A30 which was very nix friendly, but the A31p was another story altogether. I also have an X22 with Fedora6 and a T23 with PCLinuxOS 93a.

When I purchased the A31 over 2 years ago getting a fully functional Thinkpad using an ATI vid card in Linux was over my head. Not that I've become an expert by any means, but I feel confident I can get the T42P working for personal and work use. When I assumed the position...hehe...I have at work 1 1/2 years ago I chose to provide my own PC rather than use what was offered (D*ll! pos!) So the A31 migrated from personal desktop replacement (DTR) to my work DTR. Since then that's where it's been, not mobile and running a custom WinXP. Now after settling into the job (Net Admin f/ISP) and deciding to stay for a while, I find I need Internet and network access from 3 different locations as well as to have a light, small, long-lived PC for field work. I used to use the T23 for field work, but it's no lightweight. Now I'm using the X22 and am very, very happy with it. I plan to upgrade it next to an X31 or X40. For the 3 different locations (Office, Apt, Home) I had 3 different PCs and OSs! Now I'm planning to carry the T42p, it being w/o battery almost 3 lbs lighter than the A31p, between Homes and Office and the X22 will remain in my field pack for onsite work.

Circumstances, I sold the A31 and haven't received the T42 yet, cause me to use the T23 temporarily as my desktop. Also, when I get the T42 I'll have to slam XP onto it and get back to work, because the T23 can't handle some of the app's I use. Also I still need to figure out Kivio and Google Earth Pro in Linux to replace Visio and TopoUSA in Winderz. Until I do that and migrate all of my proprietary files, I can't go Linux at work.

Since I'll be using the T42 for personal as well as work use, I'll be dual-booting by day 2. My current favorite personal desktop distro is PCLinuxOS 93a and I'll be trying that first to see how it likes the T42.

I'll be back @ 7/07 to submit the initial installation notes.

06-24-2007 - Installed PCLinuxOS 2007 after using the LiveCD for an evening. The install has a few quirks that need attention for full laptop functionality.

First thing is to get cpufreq working, because mine was running full-speed all the time. Temps were @ 60c until I added an Antec cooling pad, which reduced temps to @ 52c. After config of cpufreq, about 15 min ago, my cpu temp is @ 48c. Hopefully a good cleaning and some Artic Silver will drop the temps some more.

10-02-1007 edit: The cpufreq info below needs an edit, because I disabled the script and have gotten better functionality with KCC and the Laptop module config. After trying a number of different BIOS, ACPI, Power/Battery settings I managed a fully functional ACPI with Suspend to RAM and CPU Throttling working very well

The cpufreq script is located at /etc/sysconfig/cpufreq on my machine. I added the min_freq and max_freq values, the rest are default entries.

#uncomment to set cpufreq governor after module load
#possible choices are ondemand powersave userspace performance
#minimum frequency
#maximum frequency
#Uncomment to use acpi-cpufrq as fallback

I found quite a bit of discussion regarding cpufreq previously and will have to search for it again. I may edit the above accordingly. And, I'll edit this whole mess and make it a standard wiki page when I get back from vacation.

9/11/07 - A tardy with the T23 and PCLinuxOS 93, I stumbled on a working config after initially having serious problems with the install. And unfortunately like the T23 install, I didn't keep track of what worked and what didn't. In both cases I thought I would have to re-install and possibly even with another Linux distro. And in both cases I ended up with a very functional, albeit relatively slow, virtually bug-free and enjoyable OS.

Of the numerous Linux distros I've used over the last few years PCLinuOS continues to surprise and satisfy me. I'm actually using it full-time for work and personal use, have a mash up of our DB and Google Earth working and only boot Winderz to edit existing network diagrams with Visio and run a couple of other proprietary apps.

For now I'll list my current HW config and summarize the OS


T42P 2379-DYU 1.8GHz Centrino Fire-GL 128MB, etc. Seagate 80GB, 7200RPM 2x1GB Samsung PC2700 RAM and 2xPort Replicator II