Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Just the facts, ma'am

These are the distros I have tried and have been unable to get to run on the Fujitsu Lifebook P1630. They all universally display the same behaviour: Regular boot up until X starts, at which the screen cycles through three shades of grey followed by red, green, and blue. All Linux:
* OpenSuSE 11.1
* ubuntu 8.10
* PCLinuxOS 2009
* Mepis 8 (does work but only at 800x600)
Reinstalling the Windows OS does work, so the machine is not defective.

But it does make one start wondering... Conspiracy et al. Is there a chip in the P1630 that prevents you from running anything except Microsoft?

Just because I'm paranoid doesn't mean they aren't out to get me...

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Why does it have to be so hard?

It's been a while since my last post. Very busy: work, taxes, summer planning, and ...

Trying to get SuSE 11.1 to work on a Fujitsu P1630 Lifebook.

Or any other distro, for that matter.

OpenSuSE 11.1 works just fine on the two years-old Fujitsu P1610 Lifebook. But the P1610 is getting a bit long in the tooth, so I thought I'd get the latest and greatest.

The machine is not defective, at least not as designed. It runs the M$ native installation just fine.

But I don't want M$. I want KDE-based Linux.

The P1630 comes with
an Intel Mobile GM45 Express Chipset and a 1280x768 display. However, I have not been able to get the video to work except in Failsafe mode, and even then rather tenuously.
The basic issue is that the X system configurator, ''sax2'' hangs, at a point at which the screen repeatedly cycles through:
* Black
* 33% Grey
* 67% Grey
* White
* Red
* Green
* Blue
* I Try Mepis OS, it boots, but only offers 800x600 resolution
* I try PClinuxOS, it does the same as SuSE: flashing screen cycling from black through grey and white to RGB
* I download the latest SuSE 11.1 with KDE 4.1 ISO. No joy.

And of course, in the meantime a host of other issues with CD recorders and other matters.

I really love my P1610. I get a couple of hours of battery life and have two batteries, so plenty for a TransAtlantic. It fits on an airline tray and has 80GB of disk. So it seemed a no brainer to upgrade to the P1630.

But no, they had to go and fix something that wasn't broken...