working without WEP
This document describes experiences with
running Linux on
a number of
(gaia, oyster, papagana [2004/04])
- see also freed
This page was started the day the first machine arrived,
and is developing.
As they are working sufficiently, they are given to their users,
so I no longer have access to the machines
(unless they happen to be on the internet, which is rare).
This report is listed at
TuxMobil - Linux on laptops, notebooks, PDAs and mobile phones
The R100 comes with a 900MHz Pentium M
with a 64KB/1MB cache, 256MB onboard, 12" XGA-TFT 1024x768, 30GBi.
The machine comes with no external drive,
i.e. no floppy or CD.
It appears that it expects a USB floppy and a PCMCIA CD.
It does a PXE boot and boots off a generic USB floppy, but the CD is less
simple, as only some USB drives seem to work.
I used PQMagic (using a Sony DRX-500UL USB DVD writer [did not see a Lacie DVD writer, even if it WAS designed by F.A.PORCHE!], which weighted about 10 times the R100!) and shrank the FAT32 FS from 30GB to 3GB (asking it to keep 16K clusters).
On rebooting, it said that there was 500MB free, so I suspect PQMagic might have changed the cluster size.
- CPU: 900MHz Pentium M
with 1MB of Level 2 cache (which 2.4.20 /proc/cpuinfo does not see).
- Memory: It comes with 256MB onboard, with a spare slot which can take 128-1024MB.
It has a Toshiba MK3004GAH 30GBi disk,
but no floppy or CD,
although it can take a USB floppy.
2.6.5 give 16MB/s.
Setting DMA mode fails under 2.4.20-8, so only manages 4.75MB/s (using -c3).
Trident XP4 m32 LP (XFree86 says Cyber 2100)
4x AGP Bus,
with 32MB DDR VRAM,
with a 12" TFT active matrix 1024 x 768 display.
Max external is 2048x1536@24.
- Pointing devices:
It has a TouchPad, and two buttons.
- Card Slots:
It has one typeII Cardbus slots.
- Builtin Comms:
It has a built in Centrino
Mini-PCI IPW2100 WiFi b card (needs tweaks under Linux)
V.90 56k Winmodem (works under Linux @50Kb).
It measures 286x229x14.9/19.8 mm and weighs 1.09Kg.
They claim up to 2 hours for the standard battery, and up to 6.4 with the second.
On `default' (performance?) settings, it appears to use 1% per min,
flattens out at 3% for 4 mins, then 2min at 2%, before auto-suspending at 1%
(`RESUME FROM SUSPEND FAILED').
Total time is giving something like 1.6 hours.
A while later, the `High Capacity 2nd Battery Pack PA3155U-1BRL'
This clamps on underneath at the back, using the docking station connector.
apm reckons that it makes the capacity 5hr 10m, and it appears to actually last
It seems to discharge both batteries at the same rate, rather than discharging the 2nd battery first, so swapping batteries does not gain as much as it might.
However, it appears to charge them separately - it rises steadily for a bit, then slows down as when reaching 100%, and then goes linear again.
A user reports
I've borrowed a USB CDROM drive that the BIOS is able to boot off
just fine. However, if I try and use the Toshiba recovery CD, it
boots the kernel fine (into Windows98) and then fails to see the
CD as it only contains drivers for a very specific 16bit PCMCIA
(i.e. not 32 bit PC Card) CDROM drive. I've tried a horrid hack
using the USB drive to boot and then the VAIO PCMCIA card to try
and get at the Win98 filesystem, but the drivers still don't work
with the VAIO drive. Reading the Toshiba support site, it turns
out that even if you have a Toshabia drive you may need to
purchase a special "16 bit cable" to get it to work with the
The CD sounds like a complete and utter crock - It's obviously
just a ghost image with a crappy Win98 wrapper to auto install
Anyway, I have made some progress. It turns out that RH9 boot CD
works fine in text mode (there's no XF86 driver). Booting it up
to a shell, I can then bring the LAN up, which seems to work
I bought a Toshiba PCMCIA DVD unit (external Slimline DVD-ROM), I have checked
that PCIC="yenta_socket", but I can't make it run in Linux.
I used a PXE boot, giving it `lang= devfs=nomount text' as the X server has poor colours.
I tried a Knoppix boot, but it failed to find the FS.
On papagana I use an iomega USB Floppy to start a RH 9 net install,
then did a `std Lab' NFS install just hitting `RETURN' all the time.
Note that the screen appears to show only a section of console window
says to use `video=vga16:off' but this doesn't work for me).
This made running `fdisk /dev/hda' tricky, but my fingers can configure a disk without help from my brain :-)
Set up hda3 as 917-1041 (1GB), hda4 as extended partition, hda5 as 1GB swap,
and hda6 as an LVM partition to hold separate partitions for /tmp, /usr/share
and a `cache' partition we use.
It all `just worked'.
`lspci' knows about most of the devices.
Fedora Core 2
but he hasn't tried to use the onboard WiFi.
FC2 `-configure' generates a usable trident configuration which works
OK with ACPI suspend.
Unfortunately RH9 is not nearly so simple.
- the video driver works out-of-the box (with xorg-x11-6.7.0-2)
(although not during install-must do a text install, but then
autoconfig gets a good trident driver)
- suspend/resume with ACPI seems to work
A locally built copy of the trident driver
for RH 9, from the CVS from the XFree86 4.3 live CVS tree as of mid September
2003 works with this config,
but has no acceleration.
CVS trident driver
The user notes:
External VGA output seems to work too, though I'd recommend enabling it
before starting X as I've seen some weirdness doing it after.
Whenever screen power status changes (ex. plugging or unplugging, or
the screen blanks, etc.), the screen comes back at a low-resolution.
Flipping to a different virtual terminal and back fixes the problem.
If the kernel is booted with the flag `vga=791' (1024x768@16) or
then the fbdev driver works at the corresponding depth,
using a pretty standard locally generated
16bpp (791) is faster than 24bpp (792), but if 24 bpp or PAN are needed,
accept the slightly slower response.
fbdev (no suspend)
However, on resumption, the screen is blank with a flashing cursor at the TLHC.
Using the vesa driver and forcing `DefaultDepth 8' works fine.
If you want more depth Rodrigo Castro
points out that 24 bit vesa works, but X always starts up with an `odd' colour
To fix this, select VC1 (Ctrl-Alt-F1) and then return to VC7 (Ctrl-Alt-F7).
The e100 works out of the box under RH9 and FC2.
24 bit vesa (reselect VC)
The WiFi is Centrino
based, and isn't yet usable `out of the box' - lspci lists it as
`Unknown device 1043 (rev 04)' under RH9 and
`02:0a.0 Network controller: Intel Corp. PRO/Wireless LAN 2100 3B Mini PCI Adapter (rev 04)' under FC2.
See the ipw2100 page,
or download prebuilt RPMs
(WEP modules : kernel-module-hostap-2.6.5-1.358-0.1.3-4.rhfc2.at.i686.rpm and hostap-driver-0.1.3-4.rhfc2.at.i386.rpm),
(firmware : ipw2100-firmware-1.1-2.at.noarch.rpm),
(kernel drivers : kernel-module-ipw2100-2.6.5-1.358-0.45-4.rhfc2.at.i686.rpm ipw2100-0.45-4.rhfc2.at.i386.rpm).
atrpms-package-config-66-1.rhfc2.at.noarch.rpm (needed `
Network - WiFi needs tweaks
and modprobe the ipw2100 kernel module,
and without an ifcfg-eth1, it was immediately associated with our AP,
having found the broadcast ESSID which uses no WEP.
ipw2100: Intel(R) PRO/Wireless 2100 Network Driver, 0.45
See the ipw2100 INSTALL
for more details.
PCMCIA seems to `just work' using the default yenta_socket.
It uses i810_audio
(and ac97_codec and soundcore) under RH9,
) under FC2.
Don't know which version of USB 2 it is, but it works.
`apm -s' puts it to sleep, and power button wakes it up.
ipw2100: Copyright(c) 2003-2004 Intel Corporation
ipw2100: Compiled with LEGACY FW load.
divert: allocating divert_blk for eth1
Detected ipw2100 PCI device at 0000:02:0a.0, dev: eth1, mem: 0xDFDFE000-0xDFDFEFFF -> 53950000, irq: 11
eth1: Using legacy firmware load.
ipw2100: Associated with 'wgb-public' at 11Mbps, channel 1
There seems to be no way to `resume' mode in the BIOS,
so the on/off switch cannot be set to suspend.
`echo 3 > /proc/acpi/sleep' correctly suspends it.
Other numbers have no effect.
Under FC2 it works `out of the box' and gives 16MB/s.
Under RH9 `hdparm -d1 /dev/hda' fails, so DMA cannot be enabled (even if the kernel is given `ide0=dma').
As such, use `hdparm -c3 /dev/hda' to raise the raw speed from 3MB/s
to neare to 5MB/s - e.g. un comment out the `# EIDE_32BIT=3 '
one character edit
to make PCI_DEVICE_ID_ICH3 0x24C6
just works, manging 50666 to our 3Com TC box.
WinModem - needs patched slmdm-2.7.10 driver (50Kb)
The majority of our users of these machines are doing OS research,
and are deeply into
As such, their approach1is to run the provided M$ OS,
to do the `easy' bits,
and Linux running under
for the `harder' bits.
shareware Virtual Window Manager,
from PowerToys to enable `X-mouse'
so that focus follows mouse,
all three worlds share a single home directory,
User approach to centrino - use VMWare / cygwin
\Documents and Settings\$user
\Documents and Settings\$user
(`mount -bind /mnt/hgfs/$user /home/$user')
worlds share the same filespace.
A .bat in startup starts X using
`xwin -multiwindow -emulate3buttons',
`xrdb -load .Xresources'
to set up X resources
to ensure that all X processes have an ssh agent.
`rxvt -ls -sl 5000 -e bash'
might be considered better than using M$ terminal windows.
are all treated the same.
VMWare NpAT is used, with the guest OS always getting the same local DHCP IP
address (e.g. 192.168.57.1), which should be added to the guest's
/etc/hosts so that DISPLAY can be set to point at it.
This way Linux has access to devices and full control of the machine.
WiFi, Native X, DMA IDE, SpeedStep.
- ... approach1
I use the native MS XP OS, but try and make it looks as much like
Linux as possible.
I installed Microsoft TweakUI from the Microsoft PowerToys and
enabled 'X-Mouse' to get focus follows mouse (rather than click
to focus). Rather than using the virtual window manager included
with PowerToys, I use 'vern' which seems better once properly
configured (there are loads of options).
I've also installed cygwin/XFree86, and found it much improved
over the version I tried a year ago. I used 'setup' to install
I use the 'mount' command in the cygwin profile to mount
c:/Documents and Settings/iap10/unix_home on /home/iap10
This keeps all 'user' files under the same subtree.
I start the xserver using 'xwin -multiwindow -emulate3buttons'.
This allows Windows and X windows to nicely coexist on the same
screen. I have a .bat file in my windows 'startup' directory that
starts the xserver, 'xrdb -load .Xresources', starts 'ssh-agent',
and pops up a terminal window.
Rather than using windows terminal windows, I find that 'rxvt'
works rather better. I use 'rxvt -ls -sl 5000 -e bash'
to get a login shell running bash with some decent scrollback.
I found that copying across all my normal .profile, .bashrc and
.ssh directories worked just fine. It's also possible to run
sshd, but I haven't used this much.
The other thing I've experimented with is VMWare Workstation for
windows 4.0. I've installed a RH9 VM (guest) under this, into a
4GB file rather than a real partition. I then installed the
vmware tools into the guest, which is well worth doing.
I have VMWare configured to export c:/Documents and Settings/iap10
to the guest. It's available in the guest as /mnt/hgfs/iap10
which I then 'mount -bind' to /home/iap10
I end up with a unified directory tree, which is very nice.
I currently have guest networking configured to use NAT, but may
switch to using a seperate IP. From the guest, the host always
appears as 192.168.57.1 Adding an entry for this in the guest's
/etc/hosts is really useful, as it enables you to set the DISPLAY
variable such that all windows you create in the guest appear on
the hosts' display. I never have to use the vmware console window
at all (I start it auto-minimised, and ssh in from the host).
This setup seems to work pretty well for me as I wean myself off
Linux and onto Windows...