|Processor:||800MHz Transmeta Crusoe[tm] TM5800|
|Memory:||128MB micro DIMM SDRAM (256MB maximum)|
|LCD:||10.6" wide-format SXGA TFT (1280x768x16M)|
|Graphics Card:||ATI[R] Rage[tm] Mobility-M (4MB)|
|Floppy Drive:||External USB|
|Media Drive:||Removable 8x DVD + 8x/8x/24x CD-RW Combo Drive|
|Audio:||Sigma Tel AC 9757 with 16-bit stereo|
|Modem:||56K Soft Winmodem|
|Ethernet:||Integrate 10/100 base-T|
|Mouse:||Quickpoint pointing device (3-Buttons!)|
|Keyboard:||83-key full-size keyboard (17mm pitch x 2mm stroke)|
|Ports:||2 USB, S-Video, VGA, RJ-11, RJ-45, IEEE 1395 (Firewire), 3 audio.|
The machine will freeze hard on installation unless PCI probing of the ide bus is turned off. To prevent this from happening you can pass the option "ide0=ata66 ide1=ata66" to the kernel. In SuSE this amounts to appending "ide0=ata66 ide1=ata66" to the list of other kernel options in the boot loader. It's a similar story for Red Hat (e.g. use "linux ide0=ata66 ide1=ata66" -or- "expert ide0=ata66 ide1=ata66"). Unfortunately, this may mean no DMA for the ide drives but installing a patched kernel later should fix this problem.
It appears that all the bugs that were encountered in Red Hat 7.2 and SuSE 7.3 have been resolved in Red Hat 9. Hence, there isnoneed to pass any special options to the kernel, nor is there any reason to disable DMA. The installation proceeds with no problems.
The laptop has no problem emulating any of the standard video modes (i.e. 800x600 or 1024x768), which means it's perfectly safe to let the installer configure the Xserver. However these modes will look stretched since the native resolution is 1280x768. To get the proper resolution in SuSE 7.3, just run SaX2 after the install (it just works automagically). In RedHat 7.2 and 9, first run Xconfigurator and select 1024x768 at 16bit. After Xconfigurator is finished, edit the /etc/X11/XFree86-4 file and add the following modeline to the Monitors section:
Modeline "1280x768" 89.46 1280 1296 1552 1864 768 768 776 802
Check the frequency range and make sure it looks like this:
HorizSync 15-80 VertRefresh 30-72
If you would like to get everything working in Red Hat 7.2 or SuSE 7.3, without passing special kernel options, you will need to change the kernel. The stock kernel used by Red Hat 7.2 and SuSE 7.3 has set "CONFIG_BLK_DEV_ALI15X3=y" in the kernel configuration. Due to a bug in the driver (or motherboard), this will cause the machine to hang on boot when it probes the IDE controller. To fix the problem, I suggest doing _one_ of the following:
Bad: Pass the ide0=ata66 ide1=ata66 option through the bootloader.
Note: This disables DMA?
Better: Compile a custom kernel with CONFIG_BLK_DEV_ALI15X3 unset
Note1: Be sure to change the processor type to Crusoe too.
Note2: Here is a working config file to use as a starting point.
Best: Upgrade to a newer OS (e.g. Red Hat 9) or newer kernel.
To get a nice looking text console try using the following kernel bootprompt parameter: vga=0x0314.
Note: This requires having framebuffer console support compiled into your kernel.
If you are having problems with incessant disk access, you can try the following two modifications:
— Uninstall magicdev, which is used by GNOME for checking to see if you have inserted a mountable removable device. Unfortunately this means checking for the existance of a CD/DVD every few seconds.
— Don't use ext3, or change the kjournald commit interval from 5 seconds to something like 30 seconds. I've already done this in the patched kernel linked to this site. If you want to compile your own kernel you can apply the patch found here.
It takes a little effort, but it's worth it.
Thanks to Michael Leuchtenburg.